John Francis’ Children 1870 – 1980s
The children of John Francis Bomford and his wife Elinor (Bolton) were:
- George Lyndon, born 29th September 1867 (Chapter 35)
- Anna Arbella, born 1st November 1868 (33.2)
- John Stephen, born 26th December 1869 (33.3)
- Lyndon Henry, born 1st February 1871 (33.4)
- Elinor May, born 13th May 1872 (33.5)
- Samuel Richard, born 15th December 1873 (33.6)
- Gwendoline, born 31st May 1876 (33.7)
- Charles Francis, born 10th March 1878 (33.8)
- Trevor Broughton, born 1st June 1880 (33.9)
- William Harold, born 1st January 1885 (33.10).
One of the wedding presents John Francis received from his mother was a “Polyglot” Bible that she inscribed “John F. Bomford from his Mother, 29th November 1866.”
In the fashion of previous generations (18.9 and 25.1) John Francis and Elinor kept the record of their family in the Bible. The Bible is at Crodara and the later entries were written by different people and are incomplete. John Francis has written the following on the inside flap but to make the entries more complete additional information has been added in brackets.
Father, Geo Bomford, born 11th April 1811 (at No 27 Gardiner’s Place, Dublin). Died March 1886 (at Oakley Park, and buried at Laracor on 24th March, by his cousin the Rev George Henry Martin of Bective and Rector of Agher),
Mother, Arbella Winter, born 1810 (at Tullyard, Trim). Died 8th January 1900 (at Oakley Park and buried at Mount Jerome Cemetery, Harold’s Cross, Dublin), of Oakley Park, Kells, Co Meath.
(They were married at Agher Church by Rev Francis Pratt Winter on 23 July 1832.)
John Francis Bomford, born 22nd December 1837 (at Oakley Park). Died 13th September 1911 (at Oakley Park and buried in Kells Churchyard). Married 29th November 1866 (at Drumconrath , Co Meath).
Elinor Jane Bolton (elder daughter of Rev Lyndon Henry Bolton, Rector of Drumconrath), born 6th May 1840, died 14th July 1924 (at Oakley Park and buried in Kells Churchyard).
The entries concerning their ten children and the fourteen grandchildren listed were made on a long sheet of folded paper and stuck to the inside flap of the Bible. These have been embroidered into the text which follows.
With the exception of 1870 the first six of the ten children were born during the seven years between 1867 and 1873, and it was largely because 1870 was Elinor’s “year off” that it was selected for the move from Oakley Park to Drumlargan House. It was a tightly knit family and the eldest, George, was only 18 years older than the youngest, William. In addition to the immediate family, Elinor’s mother who died in May 1886 lived at Drumlargan for the last ten or so years of her life.
As young children their education must have been at home or perhaps at the Agher Glebe School. Their cousin, George Henry Martin, was Rector of Agher from 1871 to 1884 and he most probably had much to do with the early education of the first seven children. At the age of 11 or 12 all the boys, except for the youngest and the girls, went to Denstone College, a Public School near Uttoxeter in Staffordshire, which was originally known as St Chad’s College. This school had been opened only five years before George entered in 1878, so the whole place was new and such buildings as the Chapel were only under construction when George left. The school Archive Master was able to find this information about the boys.
All six boys left from the Sixth Form and were all in the same house, called Shrewsbury House.
1. George Lyndon was there from 1878 to 1885. He became a prefect, Captain of Rugby Football in 1885, and won the Athletics Challenge cup in 1885.
2. John Stephen was at the school from 1881 to 1888, and won the Athletics Challenge cup in his last year.
3. Lyndon Henry, 1883 - 1887, was a prefect in his last year.
4. Samuel Richard, 1885 - 1892, was a prefect from 1890 until he left, and gained Higher Certificate.
5. Charles Francis, 1891 - 1898, was a prefect for the years 1897 and 1898, gained Higher Certificate, and was a member of the First XI (cricket) during his last year.
6. Trevor Broughton, 1891 - 1897, was a prefect in 1896 and 1897, a member of the 1st XI (cricket) in 1896, and also in the same year a member of the 1st XV (rugby football). Since he did not play either cricket or rugby for the school in 1897, one can assume that he left after the Easter term.
As can be seen the athletic ones were George, John, Charles and Trevor, and, although none disgraced themselves in their education, the brainy ones were Samuel and Charles. Only John was not a prefect. George used to talk very happily about his school days and had many tales about Denstone, particularly about the cross-country running; Trevor also spoke happily of his days there and his family still has many of the cups he won.
It must have been a considerable effort for John Francis to find the money for the school fees. For seven years he had to find the fees for three boys at the school at the same time, and for most of the other fourteen years there were two there at the same time. There are no records of the actual fees, but Armagh Royal School fees in 1872 were £56 a year and Denstone fees in 1907 were £15 a term or £45 for the year which with extras would come to something over £50 a year.
It will be noted that the youngest boy, William, did not follow his brothers to Denstone and a money shortage may well have been the reason; his education covered the period that his grandmother Arbella died, the family troubles over her will and the move to Oakley Park by John Francis, all of which assist in pointing the finger towards a shortage of funds. However it has been said that William was a “sickly” child and that could have had much to do with the choice of school.
The three girls would have been educated at home by a governess as was the custom in those days. Drumlargan was not a large house so during the holidays the children would have been encouraged to spend their time outdoors as much as possible; no doubt this posed no problem since they were all naturally outdoor types, and in season hunting and shooting were their favourite pastimes. The documents of the last chapter mentioned Trevor shooting pheasants at Wilmount, and George vividly remembered the hunts of 1879 and 1880 when the Austrian Empress, Elizabeth, leased Summerhill House from the 4th Lord Langford for those two hunting seasons. All the children would have been able to ride and most, if not all, would have been very proficient at it; and, further, George developed an eye for a good hunter and bought horses throughout Ireland for the Army Remounts during World War I. The sports played at Denstone would have been continued in Meath; cross-country running, often in the form of paper-chases, was a fairly common pastime; most of the larger houses boasted of a cricket pitch and perhaps even a rugby pitch; there was a cricket pitch at Headfort since about 1850 and it is still the home of the Meath Cricket Club; most houses had a grass tennis court and there were a number of hockey pitches scattered around.
Mention has already been made (21.8.5) of Fran and Dick Clifford’s prowess at hockey, cricket and tennis. In the early 1900s mixed hockey was increasingly popular and was played at various country houses when it was customary for matches to be followed by dances. Hockey was largely a winter sport whereas tennis and cricket took over in the summer. Bob Fowler, grandson of Robert Fowler who bought Rahinstown (22.9), as a boy at Eton in 1910, was the hero of what became known as “Fowler’s Match”, the most famous of the Eton and Harrow matches when he took eight wickets for nine runs. These youngsters continued to play at home and maintained a very high standard; indeed the wealthier patrons of the game, like Lord Dunsany who lived close to Drumlargan, brought over the best English, Australian and South African teams to play here against their own teams.
There was no shortage of outdoor sports but it must also be said that the whole household would have carried out a great deal of the farm work. All turned out during the harvest and helped to the best of their ability, even well into his sixties George wielded the hayfork as well as the best of his labour. Another major chore, which has now largely disappeared, was the cutting and splitting of logs for the house fires. All this kept everyone occupied and it was probably very seldom that the family were inside all day.
On completion of their education only the eldest son was assured of an income from the land; all the other sons had to find employment elsewhere, and, unlike previous generations, there appears to have been no settlement on the younger children on the death of John Francis. A good education was of prime importance and this they got; the sons mostly found suitable jobs though none ended “well-off”. George Lyndon inherited but found that because of poor farm prices much land had to be sold; however he managed to raise his family on Oakley Park but it is doubtful if he could have done that without his salary from his work on the Land Commission. John Stephen enrolled with the Indian Police. Lyndon Henry reputedly became fond of the bottle, found no serious employment and died early at Oakley Park. Samuel Richard went off to South Africa and died out there. Charles Francis became an architect and settled near Kells. Trevor Broughton emigrated to Manitoba in Canada and farmed out there raising a large family. William Harold became a doctor, joined the Fiji Colonial Service, raised a family and died out there. The girls all married and some of them also travelled widely with their husbands
Although out of context much background information concerning the children comes from the memorial in St Columba’s Church in Kells, so it is included now. It must have been after 1924 that this white marble tablet in the shape of a scroll with a black marble surround was finally placed on the church wall beside the pews where the family sat. It commemorates the death of those members of John Francis’ family, who died between 1891 and 1924, but it was erected in two parts; the first part was erected in 1907 and then in 1924 it was increased in size and further inscriptions were added to the scroll. Photo
IN LOVING MEMORY OF
JOHN STEPHEN BOMFORD INSPECTOR BURMAH POLICE
WHO DIED AT MANDALAY 9th OCT 1891, AGED 21.
AND OF SAMUEL RICHARD BOMFORD CAPT CAPE MOUNTED RIFLES AND
ADJUT CITY VOLUNTEERS GRAHAMSTOWN
WHO DIED AT GRAHAMSTOWN 13th FEB 1907, AGED 33.
THE 2nd AND 4th SONS OF JOHN FRANCIS AND ELINOR BOMFORD
OAKLEY PARK KELLS
THIS TABLET IS ERECTED BY
THEIR AFFECTIONATE PARENTS, BROTHERS AND SISTERSS
ALSO IN MEMORY OF THEIR 3rd SON
LYNDON HENRY BOMFORD CE DIED AT OAKLEY PARK
3rd AUG 1907 AGED 36
ALSO OF JOHN FRANCIS BOMFORD WHO DIED 13th SEPT 1911,
IN HIS 74th YEARR
ALSO IN MEMORY OF THEIR 7th SON
WILLIAM HAROLD BOMFORD MD FIJIAN GOVT.
WHO DIED AT SUVA 31st MARCH 1920, AGED 34.
AND ELINOR JANE BOMFORD OF OAKLEY PARK WHO DIED
14th JULY 1924 AGED 84.
The rest of the chapter is devoted to the younger children of Elinor and John Francis. The history of the eldest son, George Lyndon, and his family will be found in Chapter 35.
Anna Arbella was the eldest daughter and second child. She was born on Sunday 1st November 1868 at Oakley Park (birth registration: EN email 20 Apr 2012) and it was not very long before her name was shortened to “Annella”. Her baptism was in Kells Church and her uncle Samuel Stephen Bomford, who may have been away in India, and two of her aunts, Jane Mary Fleming and Anne Bomford, were her sponsors.
When she was 30 she married the Rev Claude Robert Longfield on 12th July 1899 at Agher Church. Claude was the fifth son of the Rev Richard Longfield, Rector of Mogelly and Canon of Cloyne, Co Cork, who had died the previous year in April 1898, and Claude’s mother was Wilhelmina (Gollock) who died in 1915. Claude was born in 1871 and so was a couple of years younger than Annella. Since he was educated at Denstone all the older Bomford brothers knew him, and it was no doubt through them that he met Annella although the Bomford and Longfield families were remotely connected (see below). From Denstone Claude gained an Exhibition to Emmanuel College, Cambridge (BA 1893); he was ordained in 1894, became curate in Kilmore Diocese in 1897 and Rector of Frankfield, Co Cork, in 1898 and 1899. He was at Cambridge with Leonard Shelford whom he asked to be ‘best man’ at the wedding, so was responsible for bringing together Gwendoline, Annella’s younger sister, and Leonard Shelford and they were married the next year.
It looks as though Claude resigned the living at Frankfield at the time of, or soon after, his marriage, because in 1900 he became a Chaplain in India. Their only child was born in 1901 at Dum-Dum outside Calcutta. Two years later on 26th September 1903 Claude died of enteric fever at Sabatha in the Punjab. Annella and her baby returned home and stayed for a while with her parents who had meanwhile moved to Oakley Park. Before World War I Annella moved to Clifton leaving for a while a room full of furnishings in the basement at Oakley Park. Her house at Clifton was near the College where her son was educated and she used to put up three or four boys who attended the College as dayboys; amongst these were her nephews, Leonard Shelford and George Warren Bomford. She died on 17th August 1941, aged 73.
John Longfield originated in Denbigh and went to Dublin about 1660; he died in 1669. His eldest son Robert, 1652 - 1711, obtained extensive grants of land in Meath, Westmeath and Clare, and settled in Kilbride, Co Meath; his family died out in the late 1700s.
Meanwhile the other son, John Longfield 1655 - 1730, moved to Co Cork. His family flourished and his descendants lived at Castle Mary which was burnt down c1920 and that family made a new house in the stable quadrangle, Longueville which was recently sold and is now a guest-house, Waterloo which was sold around 1946, Kilcoleman near Bandon which was burnt down 1921, and Sea Court at Lislee which was sold about 1920 but is still a private house, all in Co Cork. Claude’s branch, which incidentally is noted for its use of humorous nicknames like ‘Ugly Dick’, ‘Hideous Harry’, and ‘King Dick’, lived at Longueville near Mallow which was acquired by marriage in the early 1700s; the house was built in 1720 and was added to and improved about 1805 and again in 1866 when a delightful conservatory of curved iron work was added. As can be seen three of the five branches of the family had a bad time during the ‘troubles’ and either sold out or were burnt out. The rather remote connection with the Bomford family occurred when in April 1815 Robert Longfield of the Castle Mary branch married Mary Martin. Mary Martin was a sister of Charles Rudinge Martin who in 1826 married Susan Margaret Bomford, a daughter of Robert Bomford of Rahinstown.
Richard, ‘Dick’, Charles Longfield was the only child; he was born at Dum-Dum near Calcutta on 17th April 1901, and was brought up by his mother since his father Claude died when he was only two. He was educated at Clifton College and then at the Royal Military Academy at Woolwich from where he entered the army and became a gunner. He just missed World War I but served between the wars and became a brigadier during the Second World War. He was mentioned in despatches and was granted the Order of Leopold of Belgium and the Belgian Croix de Guerre, all in 1945. He retired in 1952 to a lovely ‘olde worlde’ house in Amport near Andover called “The Cottage-on-the-Green”, and died in 1985.
On 2nd November 1930 he married Olive Isabel (Ann) Newman, the second daughter of Felix Laurence Newman of Cork. They had three children
1. Noreen Ann Longfield born 23rd September 1934, and on 2nd April 1955 married William Lorimer Selby Lane, eldest son of Captain Selby Lorimer Lane of the Cheshire Regiment. William was a major in the Royal Artillery but has retired. They have three children:
a. Charles William Selby Lane born 5th July 1956.
b. Paul Richard Lorimer Lane born 6th August 1957.
c. Jancis Ann Lane born 23rd February 1962.
2. William Richard Claude Longfield born 12th April 1939, educated at Clifton and the Royal Military Academy at Sandhurst, but he chose not to be a soldier and went to Harvard and became a director of various companies. On 17th January 1970 he married Rosemary Jane Pearce, a daughter of Neil Pearce the cricketer, one time Captain of Essex and a Test Selector. They have one son:
a. Richard Neil Longfield born 19th October 1973.
3. James Charles Longfield born 29th December 1946 and he served as a Captain in the Royal Artillery and as an Army Pilot. He was educated at Clifton and the Royal Military Academy at Sandhurst, and is married.
John Stephen was the second son and the third child, being born on Boxing Day, 26th December 1869, at Oakley Park. He was baptised at Kells and his two Godfathers were his uncles, Abraham Irwin Bolton and William Bolton, and his Godmother was his aunt, Elizabeth Bomford. After leaving Denstone in 1888 he joined the Indian Police and became an Inspector in Burma, which was then part of India. At the early age of 21 he caught some tropical disease, died in Mandalay on 9th October 1891 and was buried there. Naturally this was a sad blow to the family.
Lyndon Henry was the third son and was born on Wednesday, 1st February 1871 at Drumlargan. He was baptised at Agher Church on 13th April and the record shows his name incorrectly spelt as ‘Lindon’. His godfathers were John North-Bomford of Ferrans, his third cousin, and his uncle Robert Laurence Bomford of Oakley Park; his godmother was Victoria Adela Bomford of Oakley Park, his aunt.
Although he was a prefect at Denstone he did not succeed there so well as his brothers. He became a civil engineer but later he lived at Oakley Park with the family, so it is doubtful if he was fully employed. No doubt he was bored and this may account for the family tradition that he died of delirium tremens on 3rd August 1907 at Oakley Park at the early age of 36, and was buried at Kells.
May was the second daughter and fifth child being born on Monday, 13th May 1872 at Drumlargan; no doubt her birth date had much to do with her name ‘May’. On 16th May she was baptised at Agher Church; her godfather was her uncle, George Winter Bomford, and her two godmothers were her aunt Josephine Bolton and her cousin Evelyn Mary (Bird) Bolton, a daughter of Richard Knott Bolton.
May was the first of John Francis’ children to be married and she was only 20 when the wedding took place at Agher Church on 12th July 1892. Her husband, Hugh Golding Constable, was four years older, being born on 28th August 1868. When he left school he was apprenticed in the railway workshops at Crewe, but at this time he was in the Royal Indian Navy or as it was then called the Indian Marine, and like his father he was also a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society.
Although the family may have originated in Yorkshire they had moved to Suffolk by 1603 when the records show that John Constable married Kathleen Cooke at Dedham. John and Kathleen’s son and grandson were buried at Boxted. The grandson had four boys, John, Hugh, Daniel and Abram. The second son Hugh had three sons and maybe a daughter; his second son was Golding Constable who married Anne Watts, she died in 1815 and he in 1816. Golding was ‘a rich miller owning land and a number of mills including Flatford Mill’ made famous by his son’s painting. Golding and Anne, the great-grand-parents of Hugh, had three sons and a daughter Martha who married Mr Whalley; the sons were John the famous landscape painter, Abram the miller and farmer, and Golding.
Hugh’s grandfather John Constable was born on 11th June 1776 at East Bergholt in Suffolk, and educated locally at Dedham Grammar School. He was destined to enter his father’s counting house and indeed did so for a while but he was so interested in painting that eventually his father let him go and become a student at the Royal Academy School. In 1811 he became engaged to Maria Louisa Bicknell, the daughter of Charles Bicknell of the Admiralty, whose family lived near the Constables. However before he had made his name, painting brought no financial security and he was not allowed to marry her. The death of his father in 1816 brought him some security and he took Maria off to London, some say he eloped, and on 2nd October 1816 the marriage took place at St Martin’s-in-the-Fields. They lived in Charlotte Street where their children were brought up. Maria was delicate and had lung problems, she may have suffered from consumption, which was not helped by the birth of six children, including Hugh’s father, and she died in 1829, or maybe 1828. John lived on and died at midnight on 31st March 1837, some record the date as 1st April.
A few world renowned Constable paintings are “Flatford Mill” 18l7, “The Hay Wain” 1821, “Salisbury Cathedral” 1823, “The Cornfield” 1826 and “Waterloo Bridge” 1832. There were of course many more and his daughter Isabel donated over 300 drawing and oil studies to the Victoria and Albert Museum. His fame as an artist was largely because he broke with tradition and introduced a freer and more natural approach, but monetarily to break with tradition was dangerous and it was not until 1829 that the Royal Academy only grudgingly admitted him as a full member; indeed it was the French who first acclaimed him publicly in 1824. If it were not for various bequests from members of both their families John and Maria would have had difficulty in raising their six children:
1. John Charles Constable, born 1817, studied medicine at Cambridge and was a pupil of Michael Faraday. He died in 1841, aged 24.
2. Maria Louisa Constable was born 1819 and nicknamed ‘Minna’. Her mother died when she was about 10 but she soon took charge of the family and became a somewhat alarming old lady. She died in 1884, aged 65.
3. Charles Golding Constable, Hugh’s father, was born in 1821. He took to the sea, joined the Indian Marine and eventually became a Captain. Around 1836 he left on his first voyage to China and did not return until after his father’s death so missed his large funeral in London. During the 1850s he gained a place in the reference books for having conducted the first survey of the Persian Gulf. He had to struggle with navigation as a youth so he must have shown considerable determination to be entrusted with this survey. Shortly before his survey the Arab sheikhs bordering the southern end of the Gulf gained their income largely by piracy; this was ended by a treaty or truce arranged by the British, and the Sheikhdoms that signed the truce have been called ever since the Trucial States. Charles was made a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society. He died in 1879, aged 58.
4. Isabel Constable was born in 1823 and died unmarried in 1885 aged 62.
5. Alfred Constable was born in 1826 and died unmarried in 1853 aged 27. He was drowned whilst boating on the Thames.
6. Lionel Bicknell Constable was born in 1828 and died unmarried in 1884 aged 56.
So Hugh Constable, Charles Golding’s second son, had no uncles or aunts alive at the time of his marriage to May Bomford. His father was also dead; unfortunately I have no information about his mother. However he did have three brothers - Eustace, Cyril and Clifford, and a sister - Ella.
Their initial movements after the wedding of Hugh and May are not clear, nor do I know when Hugh left the Navy; but they must have left for New Zealand very soon after the ceremony because their first child was born there in April 1893. The next firm date we have is the birth of their second child in 1896 at Rathwade House in Co Carlow, which they had leased from Alistair Forbes-Gordon. At this date he was only 28 but it looks as though he had resigned from the Navy by then, even though it seems to be rather young to terminate a career.
On 17 April 1905 Hugh Constable and his family sailed from Sydney arriving at the Port of Vancouver on May 10 1905. Along with them was Charles F Bomford (33.8) (Catherine Holman email 31 Dec 2011).
For a few years before 1911 they lived at Lakefield overlooking Caragh Lake with fine views of the Macgillycuddy Reeks; my mother remembers staying with them there as a young girl, probably around 1909. In 1911 they were staying at Oakley Park having given up Lakefield. This information comes from a mortgage dated 5th October 1911, which Hugh gave to his brother-in-law George Lyndon Bomford, so Hugh could not have been short of cash. The mortgage states:
Mortgage of Oakley Park (1911, Vol 90, No 224)
1. George L. Bomford, JP, of Oakley Park, Farmer,
2. Hugh Golding Constable, late of Lakefield, Caragh, Co Kerry, but at present residing at Oakley Park.
G. L. Bomford mortgaged for £1,000 206 statute acres of Oakley Park, Kells, to Hugh Constable.
At some later date they leased Ardtully, near Kenmare, Co Kerry, from the Orpen family and again my mother used to visit them there. This was a fine Victorian House with a high roof, stepped gables and dormers, and a battlemented round tower and turret at one corner. The Orpens had lived there since the early 1700s and the house was rebuilt by Sir Richard Orpen (1788-1876). It was Sir Richard’s grandson who worked as a doctor in West Africa who leased the place to the Constables. The Constables had moved to England before the house was burnt down in 1921 during the ‘troubles’, now only the shell remains standing. Hugh and May finally settled at Hoe Mill House at Maldon in Essex.
Although Hugh never reached the heights of painting that his grandfather did, he was no mean artist and a number of his paintings and sketches hang at Crodara; his attraction to the soft colours of the Kerry Mountains was probably founded in the eyes of the artist. Hugh taught May how to paint and she became quite good and exhibited at the Royal Hibernian Academy in Dawson Street, Dublin. The only Bomford to exhibit.
They had two children, a boy and a girl, before Elinor May died on 26th January 1947, aged 74, and Hugh died two years later on 21st February 1949, aged 80.
1. Arahenua Ella Constable was born on 3rd April 1893 at Temuka in the District of Canterbury on the South Island of New Zealand, and was given the Maori name of Arahenua, which the family soon shortened to “Winoa”. Just to the east of Temuka is another town called Arowhenua, which may have something to do with Winoa’s name. She never married and, when her parents died, lived quietly at Dedham in Essex, not too far from East Bergholt from where her famous great-grandfather came. She too was quite an artist and painted a lovely watercolour of Oakley Park for my mother during the 1950s. She died on 3rd October 1966.
2. John Hugh Constable was born at Rathwade House, Co Carlow, on 27th February 1896. He was educated at Clifton College and was there with his two cousins, George Bomford and Dick Longfield. On leaving school he joined the army being commissioned on 10th February 1915 into the Royal Field Artillery and served in both World Wars, becoming a Lieutenant Colonel. During 1920 and 1921 he was in Germany as a member of the Allied Control Commission and at various times served in France, Belgium, Germany, Malta and India. He retired in 1947 and settled at The Old Rectory at Kettleburgh near Woodbridge in Suffolk. On 25th March 1927 he married Eileen, the second daughter of Sir George Saltmarsh. They had two sons before John died on 23rd November 1974, aged 78, and Eileen died in 1984:
a. John Charles Philip Constable born 28th September 1928, educated at Marlborough, and married Freda Keable in 1963. He served for a while as a Lieutenant in the Royal Artillery being commissioned in 1947. He carries on the family tradition of being an artist having attended both the Chelsea and the Ipswich Art Schools. They have a son:
i. John Bowden Constable born 20th October 1963 and he also has a son:
a. John Constable born c1999.
b. Richard Golding Constable was born on 8th June 1932 and educated at Marlborough. He served in the Korean War as a Lieutenant in the Royal. Artillery. On 1st June 1954 he married Elaine Good and they had four children:
i. Yonne Elizabeth Constable born 28th October 1955.
ii. Julia Margaret Constable born 16th May 1957.
iii. Caroline Anne Constable born 3rd March 1959.
iv. Stephen Richard Charles Constable born 6th June 1962.
In 1970 Richard married secondly Valerie Zelle and had two more children:
v. Alexandra Emily Constable born 28th November 1970.
vi. Richard Constable born 28th March 1972.
Amongst the documents is an indenture dated 5th September 1855 for a ‘Free’ ticket to the New Theatre Royal, called Covent Garden, to Isabel Constable, daughter of John Constable, R. A. and aunt to Hugh.
Drury Lane, Covent Garden, was burnt down in 1808, and the raising of prices after the opening of the new theatre in 1809 led to riots, which practically suspended the performance for three months. One way which John Kemble, the actor and the principal proprietor, of the many other proprietors listed in this document, raised money for the new theatre was to sell documents, like this indenture, and then give free admission for a number of years.
This indenture was issued to John Kemble himself on 1st January 1810 for £500. Kemble then had free admission to the Theatre for 85 Years. John Kemble died in 1825 and the indenture was willed to Maria Louise Constable the wife of John Constable RA; she died in 1829. The indenture was auctioned in 1855 though there is no clue to what happened to it in the intervening 25 years. Isabel Constable, the unmarried daughter of John and Maria and aunt to Hugh Constable, bought a share of the indenture for £66.11.4. The other two shares amounting to £160 was divided between Heaume Sandford and William Henry Woollett.
The theatre was one of John Constable’s pastimes, as it was of his wife Maria. They gradually became intimate with the back-stage world and knew John Kemble well, hence the legacy.
Samuel was the fourth son and sixth child being born on Monday 15th December 1873 at Drumlargan. He was baptised at Agher Church on 17th February 1874; two of his godparents were Nathaniel Francis Preston and his wife Augusta of Swainstown, Nat was his third cousin; the other godfather was John Jones who might be a neighbour and a descendant of Roger Jones of Dollinstown, later called Dolanstown, between Gallow and Kilcock.
Samuel did well at Denstone but was not particularly good at games. He left Denstone in 1892 and then went out to South Africa. It is likely that he was destined to go to India but his older brother John had died there at the end of 1891 and South Africa was thought to be healthier, at any rate South Africa was new territory for the family. It is not known what he did out there initially, but he was there when the Boer War started in 1899 and he joined a locally raised levy, the Grahamstown City Volunteers, as adjutant; so it is likely that he had settled at Grahamstown which was then a dignified cathedral city about 80 miles north-east of Port Elizabeth. He might possibly have joined the army before the war started because in a letter, which Elinor wrote to John Francis on 16th December 1899 (32.7, No 14), she refers to the reverses of the army and hopes “our boy will be safe”. However it was as a result of these reverses that the local levies were raised, so Elinor’s worry may only be that “our boy” was in the area and not actually fighting. At a later date Samuel became a Captain in the Cape Mounted Rifles. He may have stayed on in the army after the war ended in 1901, and it might be that it was after the war that he transferred to the Cape Mounted Rifles, a permanent Regiment.
He died at Grahamstown, aged 33, on 13th February 1907. Another piece of family tradition is that he shot himself after a disastrous love affair.
Gwendoline was the seventh child and third daughter, being born on Wednesday 31st May 1876 at Drumlargan and baptised at Agher Church on 5th July. Her godfather was her uncle, Lyndon Bolton the younger, and her two god-mothers were Georgina McKay(Fox) and Susan Martin; Susan Martin, 1861 - 1891, later Mrs Mease, was the daughter of Rev George Henry Martin of Bective and grand-daughter of Susan Margaret Bomford; Georgina McKay would have been Georgina Frances McKay eldest daughter of Rev McKay, vicar of Laracor and Galtrim, who married James George Fox, 1842 - 1919, the Chief of his name and titled “The Fox”, of Galtrim House north of Summerhill, on 30th May 1877.
On 3rd October 1900 Gwendoline married the Rev Leonard McNeill Shelford at Kells Church. Leonard had been educated at Cambridge where he got his MA; there he became friends with Claude Longfield and when Claude was married in 1899 to Annella Bomford he asked Leonard to be his ‘best man’, so Claude and Leonard travelled to Drumlargan. There Leonard met Gwendoline who no doubt was one of the bridesmaids, and just over a year later they married. After the wedding the Shelfords settled in Chelsea, London, where Leonard was a curate; they remained there until 1909 when he became Vicar of St Michael’s in Chiswick, London. Their first three children were born at No 10 Walpole Street in Chelsea, and their fourth child (and maybe fifth) was born at No 152 Sutton Court Road in Chiswick. Rev Leonard McNeill Shelford's origins are as follows (email from Fergus Boyle [downcraig] 22 Jan 2008): Sir Charles Holland Hastings, KCH, whose origins are a mystery[if you can help, please Contact Us], had three daughters by his first marriage to Agnes Paisley, daughter of Archibald Paisley of Paisley, Renfrewshire, Scotland. One was Jane, and another was Elizabeth who married Rev William Mackey. They had a daughter Flora Agnes Mackey, who married first William Octavius Shakespeare Gilly and was quickly widowed, and then Rev Leonard Edmund Shelford (see below). Their child, the Rev Leonard McNeil Shelford, married Gwendoline Bomford. Sir Charles Holland Hastings married secondly Mary Gardiner, daughter of General William Neville Gardiner and had quite a few more children though many died young. He was based mostly in Edinburgh, when his early active military career ended when he lost an arm at the siege of Copenhagen. He was knighted for services as Steward to the household of His Excellency in Ireland in 1835 and died in 1849.
Gwendoline died in April 1952 aged almost 76, and Leonard who was born in 1871 died in June 1956 aged 85. They had five children.
The Shelford pedigree starts with Leonard Shelford of Weston in Hertfordshire in 1580. Since then most generations have kept the family names of Leonard, William and Thomas. ‘Our’ Leonard’s grandfather, Rev William Heard Shelford, 1798-1854, was Rector of Preston in Suffolk; he had five sons of which the second was ‘our’ Leonard’s father, Leonard Edmund Shelford.
1. Sir William, 1834 -1905, was a civil engineer who became a Knight Commander of the Order of St Michael and St George (KCMG) and a Chevalier of the order of the Crown of Italy. He married and his descendants are alive.
2. Leonard Edmund Shelford, father-in-law of Gwendoline Bomford, was born in 1836 and died in 1914, aged 78. He became a clergyman and was Rector of Stoke Newington in London at the time of his son’s marriage; later he became vicar of St Martin-in-the-Fields and Prebendary of St Paul’s Cathedral. In 1867 he married Flora Agnes Mackay, daughter of the Rev William Mackay, and they had one child, Leonard McNeill Shelford, before she died in 1892 when Leonard the younger was 21. Leonard Edmund married secondly in 1895 Alice Mary, daughter of David Duffield, and they had no children. So Leonard McNeill Shelford was the only child.
3. Thomas Shelford, 1839-1900, CMG, became a merchant in Singapore where his eldest son continued the business. He married twice and had seven children; many of his grandchildren are alive.
4. Robert Frost Shelford, 1847-1910, died unmarried.
5. Edward John Shelford, 1853-1930, became a merchant in Madras, India. He married and had a boy and a girl. The boy, Frederick Leonard Deshon Shelford, born 1889, Colonel in the Wiltshire Regiment, married in 1930 Patricia Bomford Emerson, a daughter of Lieutenant-Colonel I. B. Emerson. Patricia has an interesting name, even though there is no further information, because to be given the Christian name of ‘Bomford’ indicates a previous Bomford - Emerson marriage, and there was such a marriage (27.4). Mary Jane North-Bomford married John Emerson in 1850 and they had eight children but only three have been definitely located. It is highly likely that now we have another son, Lieutenant-Colonel I. B. Emerson whose initial ‘B’ also probably stood for ‘Bomford’.
1. Flora Elinor McNeill Shelford was born at No 10 Walpole Street, Chelsea, London, on 24th July 1901. In 1922 she married Ralph T. Coombs and they had a boy and a girl. Flora died in 1940 aged 39 and Ralph in 1949.
a. Michael Coombs born 1928.
b. Sally Coombs born 1931.
2. Gwendoline May McNeill Shelford was born on 16th December 1902 also at Walpole Street. In 1933 she married William (Bill) H. Matthews. They had two girls. Bill Matthews was a son of Thomas Burlton Matthews of Rewa River in Fiji, and his older sister Bessie married May’s uncle William Harold Bomford (33.10); so Bessie was May’s sister-in-law as well as being her aunt, if that is possible. Bill was a ships' engineer and served most of his time on sugar boats of the Colonial Sugar Refining Company (CSR) sailing between the Pacific islands, New Zealand and the company base in Sydney. On a visit to England, probably at the British Empire Exhibition at Wembley in 1925, he met May Shelford and they eventually became engaged. Just before the war Bill developed an ulcerated leg, was in and out of hospital and died in a Sydney hospital. May lived on in Sydney and died there in 1971 aged 69.
a. Wendy Matthews born 1933 and living in Sydney.
b. Anne Matthews born in 1936.
3. Leonard Vere McNeill Shelford was born on 21st September 1905 at No 10 Walpole Street in Chelsea and educated at Clifton as a dayboy, staying with his aunt Annella Longfield. He became a banker and served for over thirty years in Egypt and Sudan. He married firstly in 1935 Barbara Lee Archbald, a daughter of Major R. H. Archbald of Burgh Heath in Surrey; they had no children. In 1945 this marriage was dissolved. In Khartoum in 1947 he married secondly Kerstin Olivia Lindberg, daughter of Torvald Lindberg of Uppsala in Sweden, a member of the National Bank of Egypt. Kerstin died c1953 and Leonard married twice more and retired to Brighton with his fourth wife, Alison. He died there in December 1992. He had two boys with his second wife:
a. Richard Leonard Shelford born in Khartoum in 1948 who married Janet Thomas of Johannesburg in 1980, and they have an adopted son Stephen born in 1988.
b. Peter Bengt McNeill Shelford born in Khartoum in 1951 who married Patricia Pullen of Zimbabwe in 1977 and they have a boy and two girls.
4. John Ridgeway McNeill Shelford was born on 23rd March 1909 at No 152 Sutton Court Road, Chiswick in London. In 1931 he married Beatrice a daughter of J. W. Deuchar of Dissington Hall in Northumberland. In 1935 John was killed in a motor accident. They had no children.
5. Gordon Hope McNeill Shelford was born in 1916, was ordained and became Rector of Haslemere in Surrey, but later he left the Church. In 1943 he married Ethel Patricia (Pat) Hargreaves Bolton, a daughter of Col G. H. Bolton, OBE, MC, DL, of Newchurch Rossendale in Lancashire. They had three girls and a boy:
a. Judith Patricia, born 1944
b. John Leonard, born 1947, married with two children;
c. Bridget Anne, born 1951,married
d. Victoria, born 1953, married.
In the late 1960s Gordon married secondly Ann, but they had no children and Gordon died in 1989 aged 73.
Charlie Bomford was the fifth son and eighth child being born on 10th March 1878 at Drumlargan, and baptised at Agher Church on April 12. His godfathers were his father, John Francis, and George Turner (no information), and his godmother was the wife of John North-Bomford of Ferrans, Charlotte Maria who died three years later. He left Denstone in 1898 having excelled in both work and games, and then he qualified as an architect and engineer, becoming an Associate Member of the Institute of Civil Engineers of Ireland (AMICEI). After he had qualified he lived at Oakley Park and became engineer to the Kells Rural Council, but he had given up that job by September 1911.
On 12th August 1914, a week after war was declared, he married Dorothy Maud Price, ‘Bobbie’, born 1888, the youngest child of thirteen of Rev John Price, Rector of Lanwergan (? Llanfigan) in Brecon. They settled at Robinstown in 1915, one mile on the Kells side of Kilskeer; then in 1922 they moved to Riversdale, four miles from Kells on the road to Charlesfort and Ballybeg; finally they settled at Priory Cottage, a large bungalow which Charlie built just outside the Headfort estate wall on the site of the now ruined Priory of the Knights Hospitallers of St John of Jerusalem founded by Walter, or more likely Hugh, de Lacy c1174, which was dissolved by the edict of King Henry VIII and converted into a fortified house or castle.
During the war Charlie joined the Leinster Regiment and became a Captain; he was badly gassed during the war but recovered fairly well. Between the wars I remember him as a crafty tennis player, but he also played cricket, was a great fisherman spending many hours on the Blackwater behind Priory Cottage, and an excellent shot. The tennis court at Priory was much used and the standard of their tennis parties was very high, particularly in the 1930s when their children took part. Bobbie however was a keen gardener with green fingers, a skill she passed on to her daughter May. On a more serious note Charlie, as an architect and engineer, was responsible for many of the houses in Kells and developed those of Maudlin Street and around the Fair Green. Charlie and Bobbie had four children:
1. Charles Powell Bomford ‘Bunty’, as he was called, was born on 5th May 1915 in Robinstown and baptised in Kells. He was educated as a dayboy at Wickham House Prep School and whilst there lived with ‘Aunty Gwen’ (Gwendoline Shelford, 33.7) whose youngest son Gordon was about the same age and may have gone there too; later he went to Eastbourne College. He was a fine sportsman, being outstanding at Cricket and tennis. He joined the Royal Air Force on the outbreak of World War II and became a flying officer. On 10th June 1940 (or 9 June: Appendix G) he was shot down in his bomber and killed over France, soon after the Allied retreat from Dunkirk. He was only 25. He was buried in France (Appendix G).
2. John Trevor Bomford born on 27th August 1916 and died aged 4½ on 7th March 1921. He was buried in the Kells Churchyard beside his uncle George Bomford.
3. Harriet Eleanor Bomford was called ‘May’ and was born on 7th May 1918 in Southsea. When World War II broke out she joined the ATS; she served first as a heavy truck driver, then she was commissioned, became a Commander and served with the Ack-Ack. After the war she returned to Kells and there married her cousin on 14th September 1948. He was Edward ‘Ted’ Willoughby Thompson, a Lieutenant-Colonel in the Royal Artillery and son of Colonel Albert George Thompson, CMG, DSO, of Moresk House, Truro in Cornwall, who had married one of “Bobbie’s” elder sisters. They lived at Shoby Lodge near Melton Mowbray, in Leicestershire. Ted died in 5th October 1974 and May died 2nd October 2001 at her home aged 83. They were both buried at Saxilby near Shoby. They had two children:
a. Antony Stephen Thompson was born 7th March 1957 and adopted. He was educated at Hailebury and c1979 married Janet, daughter of Howard Marshall. They have a son:
i. Edward Antony, born in May 1985.
b. Jennifer Susan Thompson was born on 13th December 1958 and is unmarried.
4. Richard Lyndon Bomford known as Dick, born on 3rd April 1922 at Riversdale and educated at Denstone between 1934 and 1941. He was not particularly academic but excelled at sport being Captain of Tennis for three years, and on the 1st XV (rugby) and the athletics team. On leaving school he immediately joined the army becoming a Lieutenant in the Rifle Brigade. While serving in Italy in the 10th (2nd Bn. The Tower Hamlets Rifles) Bn,he trod on an anti-personnel mine and was killed on 28th May 1944 and buried at Cassino. (Appendix G says he died on 29 May at Cassino and was buried at Anzio; the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website says he died 29 May 1944 and is buried in Cassino War Cemetry, grave reference VII.E.1)
The loss of their boys badly upset Charlie and Bobbie and they lost interest in Priory Cottage where the tennis court, the river and the shooting brought back too many sad memories; so they sold the place in 1950 and settled at Inglenook at Ballywilliamroe near Bagenalstown in Co Carlow. Charlie died there on 31st March 1961, aged 83. Bobbie sold Inglenook in 1964 for just over £2,000 and moved to England to live with her daughter May at Shoby Lodge. She died there on 22nd January 1973. They were buried together at Kells and the inscription on their gravestone reads:
“In loving memory of Captain Charles Francis Bomford, AMICEI, died 31st March 1961 aged 83, also Dorothy Maud his beloved wife, died 22nd January 1973. I thank God upon every remembrance of you. (Phil 1.3).”
Trevor was the sixth son and ninth child, and was born at Drumlargan on Tuesday 1st June 1880, and baptised at Agher Church on July 20th His godfather was his great-uncle Major Samuel Bomford who was then living at Cambridge (26.3), and his godmother was his aunt Josephine Ruth Bolton, the wife of Richard Knott Bolton who was then Rector of Fenny Bently in Derbyshire. It is not known how the name ‘Broughton’ became a Bomford name: it does not appear to be the name of any connection.
In 1891 aged 11 he went with his 13 year old brother Charlie to Denstone where yet another brother, Samuel Richard, was already a prefect. In 1896 Trevor was made a prefect, and that year he became a member of the school cricket XI and the school rugby XV. He left Denstone in 1897 and stayed at home for at least a couple of years. There are references to him in the letters of November and December 1899 (32.7): numbers 5 and 11 mention his visit to Oakley Park where he went shooting at Wilmount; number 14 states “Trevor says he is getting another first from George Mason” which sounds as though he was studying under George Mason, perhaps for the Indian Army entrance exam or for his commission out there. It was, perhaps, in 1900 that he went to India and was commissioned into the Surma Valley Light Horse Infantry Regiment. This was a militia unit formed for defence against native uprisings, and as such the officers were only paid during the times the unit went on exercises each year. It was therefore necessary that he had secondary employment.
The Surma River runs through Assam and Trevor’s militia unit was probably based at either Silchar or Sylhet, the only two largish towns on the river and the centres of the tea industry. It was in a tea plantation that Trevor found his other job, and there he was put in charge of the native labour. He enjoyed his time in India and he lived there, as he said “like a king” for possibly seven years between about 1900 and 1907; he only left because he became very ill with malaria and was sent back to Oakley Park to recuperate. Eventually he fully recovered but his mother, Elinor, did not want him to go back to India; she had already lost one son out there (John Stephen died in Mandalay in 1891), and did not want to lose another.
During his convalescence Oakley Park would have been a lively place since his brothers George, Charles and possibly William Harold were based there. No doubt he enjoyed the usual round of sports and parties at the country houses in the area. It was at a tennis party at neighbouring Kingsfort that he became engaged to Henrietta Frances Chaloner, ‘Birdie’, the youngest Chaloner daughter (33.9.1) born 1st January 1881. However before he married he had to find another job. Opportunities were few in Ireland but Canada was looking for settlers, so Trevor who loved adventure decided to have a look at that country.
Much of the information about Trevor has come from his daughter, May Julyan, who has the diary which Trevor kept on his first visit to Canada to find a place to start a homestead. He left Belfast on 14th April 1909 aboard SS ‘Lake Erie’ with the intention of looking around Duck Lake in Saskatchewan, but on the boat he decided to join another passenger, Mr Roberts, who was going to Ashern in Manitoba which lies between Lake Winnipeg and Lake Manitoba. In Winnipeg he and Roberts bought supplies and the necessary gear and took the train northwards to Oak Point, which was then the end of the line. There he bought a team of oxen for £20, but unfortunately his wagon had not arrived from Winnipeg so he could not use them. However the next morning they set out with another party of men going north who had two wagons drawn by oxen and a horse buggy. Only one of the party had been in that part before and he only for three months, but none were completely inexperienced; two were Boer War veterans and another was a farmer from Portage la Prairie further south. They had to cover about a hundred miles to Ashern district across rugged unsettled terrain, which was soon to be opened up as the railway line pushed northwards. Trevor’s idea was to find suitable land and claim it before the railway line brought settlers into the territory. The journey was tough going, the horse buggy was used to scout ahead and pick the best route, but even so the wagons became bogged in mud holes and swamps or muskegs because of the spring thaw of winter snow. At the end of the first day they had only managed about 12 miles, the second about 15 miles, and the third day only 3 miles because the land was so badly flooded. The fourth day was another bad one as, when they were crossing a very rickety bridge, one of the oxen fell off almost taking the whole outfit with it. However the beast was none the worse and the bridge led them on to a trail which ran along the eastern shore of Lake Manitoba where the going was better. On the fifth day they camped about 6 miles southwest of Dog Lake.
The next day Trevor and Roberts left the others to travel up the east side of Dog Lake where they met and joined another party of settlers and were very pleased to dump the gear they were carrying in their wagon. Somewhere north of the lake they passed the last settlement they were to see for some days. Up to that point there had been a few isolated settlements, a Mrs Millar had made them a supply of bannocks to replenish their supply of bread, and at the last settlement they were able to buy food from a Mrs Oakley; nevertheless it was unlikely that they would have gone hungry as there was plenty of game around and Trevor was amazed by the number of large and small fish in the streams; there were so many that they were able to spear them with pitch-forks. On the second day after leaving the Oakley place they were cut off by a bush fire and had to wait on a previously burnt patch for it to blow away.
Finally after about eight or nine days travelling from Oak Point they came to the Ashern territory where Trevor and Roberts had a good look around and decided on their pieces of land; they then set off back to Winnipeg to get the title to their tracts of land. The return was much swifter as they followed the railway survey line. About three-quarters of the way back to Oak Point they reached Deerhorn tired and footsore, a memorable place for there they slept in a bed for the first time in nearly two weeks. At Oak Point Trevor found that his wagon had arrived so he packed his gear into it and left it in a barn whilst he went by train to Winnipeg to have his claim and title agreed. He returned to Ashern in his wagon drawn by his two oxen; he stayed there on his own for over a year clearing the land and building himself a cabin for the winter of 1909 and of course suitable for his wife to be.
In the autumn of 1910 he returned to Ireland and on 18th January 1911 he married Henrietta Chaloner at Moynalty Church; this is a small church, which would have been full to overflowing.
After a few months, and after the Canadian thaw, they set off for Ashern in 1911 and settled down to a life of hard work with little monetary return. Trevor was then aged 31 and Henrietta 30. Their return was easier as the railway had by then reached Ashern, but it was still tough going with no roads, and it must have been a considerable culture shock for Henrietta who was uprooted from her comfortable Georgian mansion complete with servants, and transferred to a cabin in the middle of nowhere.
Neither of them ever crossed the Atlantic again and no member of the family ever visited them; that seems almost incredible and unfeeling now, but travel was more difficult in those days and all the family on both sides of the Atlantic were struggling to make ends meet. Trevor devoted all his cash to improving his place, clearing the land and building a better house for his growing family. The land only amounted to about 160 acres but this was enough when one considers that all he had was a single blade plough pulled by two oxen, and that the land had first to be cleared of trees and stumps. It was not for another year or so that he purchased workhorses. In 1918 Henrietta received a windfall of £1,000 from her brother Willoughby and no doubt this was put to good use. This money, an inheritance which also went to her other brothers and sisters, had been charged against the land of Kingsfort for some years in accordance with the wills of her granduncle Richard Chaloner (will 24th March 1873, died 1879) and of her father Captain Claud Chaloner who died on 21st June 1917. (Deed dated 1918, Vol 57, No 288 of 3rd December.)
In 1928 the Ashern farm was sold and a new one of about 480 acres bought at Oak River, Manitoba, 30 miles north-west of Brandon. Here the land was much better and they were full of hope, but then the depression started. Life was just beginning to improve about the time of the start of World War II. As May Julyan says, “We never went hungry, but were never well off. As a family we had a very good up bringing and we could not have had better parents.”
Trevor retired from farming in 1946. He had developed Alzheimer’s disease. He and Henrietta lived their last years in Hamiota, around ten miles west of Oak River; Trevor died there on 3rd October 1963 aged 83, and Henrietta on 27th March 1970 aged 89.
The Reverend John Chaloner was born in 1658 in Shropshire, England, was educated at Trinity College, Dublin, BA, MA, and became a clergyman. His first appointment, to the Parish of Errigal in Co Donegal, bored him and after two years he got something more exciting, becoming chaplain on the Royal Navy ship ‘Royal Sovereign’. His ship was despatched to the West Indies to clear the seas of pirates and the bounty the Government paid was considerable; the result was that the ship’s company returned rich men, and it was a wealthy John who returned to County Donegal. However he could not settle as a country parson and when he heard that the estate of the Cromwellian settler, Captain James Stopford, was being sold near Kells in the rich farming county of Meath, he set off to the auction with his money in his saddle-bags. For £1,502.8.8 sterling he bought about 640 plantation acres (1,040 statute) of Rathinree and other adjacent townlands. Kingsfort is the English translation of the Irish Rath (fort) and Ree (king). The sale included “a castle, three stone houses with bawnes and cabbins,” and it was in one of the stone houses, later named Cherrymount, that he lived whilst he built himself a fine house, which he called Kingsfort. It was finished in 1735 and he died the next year in 1736. Three sons survived him.
The eldest son, John Chaloner, married in 1732 Charity, daughter of Robert Graham of Drogheda. Robert Graham’s relative John Graham of Platten near Drogheda was the Head-Landlord of Oakley Park at this date (24.6). John named the old house after his wife, Charity-mount, which soon became Cherrymount. In the mid 1700s he decorated Kingsfort House with fine stucco ceilings and plaster panelling. He also did up Cherrymount, which became the second Chaloner house on the estate. John died in 1778 having had a family of four sons and two daughters. Richard Chaloner, the eldest son, inherited, became a JP and was High Sheriff of Meath in 1784. Also in 1784 in November he married Frances Maria, a daughter of Edward Herbert, 1728 - 1770, MP, and they had five daughters but no sons. Richard spent much of his later life improving the land and planting trees particularly in the ‘Glen’, which ran between his two houses. In 1835 the Ordnance Survey recorded that Kingsfort House “is a superb building and the grounds richly adorned with plantations, lakes and ornamental gardens”. To help him with the land he employed, as agent, Claud William Cole-Hamilton, 1781 - 1822, whose uncle was the first Earl of Enniskillen. Richard’s eldest daughter, Nicola Sophia, promptly fell in love with him and they were married on 10th October 1805 in the old Moynalty Church. The present building was built in 1819. Richard, known as “Dickey of the Glen”, died in 1832. (See also paragraph 25.3).
Meanwhile Nicola Sophia Cole-Hamilton had two sons, Arthur and Richard, before her husband died on 25th April 1822. In 1826 she married secondly Joseph Pratt of Cabra Castle near Kingscourt (see 20.2.1) where she went to live with her two teenage sons.
1. Arthur Willoughby Cole-Hamilton was born in 1806, and inherited the Cole-Hamilton estate of Beltrim, Co Tyrone, on the death of his grandmother in 1823. He served with the Tyrone Militia and became a major. In 1831 he married Emily Catherine, daughter of Rev Charles Beresford who was the grandson of the 1st Earl of Tyrone and nephew to the 1st Marquess of Waterford. Emily Catherine was also a first cousin of Marcus Gervais de la Poer Beresford, Archbishop of Armagh, who married Elizabeth Bomford (Kennedy) wife of Robert George Bomford of Rahinstown (22.10). She died in 1869 and he in 1891 having had five sons and three daughters. We are interested in the two oldest boys.
a. William Claud Cole-Hamilton born 1833, Captain in the 88th Connaught Rangers, who inherited Beltrim Castle. His wife Caroline was a grand-daughter of the 1st Earl of Castle Stewart whose ancestry goes back to Robert II, King of Scotland, 1315 - 1390.
b. Claud Cole-Hamilton born 1838, see below.
2. Richard Chaloner Cole-Hamilton was born in 1810, Lieut 12th Lancers, and married in 1835 Harriett, 1812-1890, daughter of Charles Tisdall of Charlesfort, Kells. When his grandfather Richard Chaloner died in 1832 he inherited Kingsfort provided he took the name of Chaloner. He died in 1879 and since he had no children, Kingsfort was left to his nephew Claud, see above.
Claud Cole-Hamilton succeeded to Kingsfort in 1879 and assumed the name of Chaloner in the terms of his great-grandfather’s will. He was born in 1838 and on 2nd June 1875 married Henrietta Ann Montgomery; she was the eldest daughter of Alexander Montgomery of Kilmer, Co Meath, and her mother Frances was the daughter of Charles Tisdall of Charlesfort, 1782-1835, (25.3.1). It was Henrietta Ann’s brother, Archibold Vernon Montgomery of St Mary’s Abbey in Trim, who drew up the second will of Arbella Bomford in 1891 (32.6.1); A. V. Montgomery must have lived to a good age since he had a collecting card for the Meath Protestant Orphan Society in 1864, was elected its President in 1935 and died in office in November 1943, just missing the MPOS centenary.
Claud died on 21st June 1917 and Henrietta in 1927. Their eight children included Henrietta who married Trevor Bomford. To be strictly correct the surname of the first few children was Cole-Hamilton since their father Claud did not change his name to Chaloner until he inherited in 1879.
1. Sophia Elizabeth (Mrs Harman) was born 22nd February 1877 and on 5th August 1914 she married Arthur Stuart Harman of Killeagh House, Co Meath. He was the third son of William Harman, 1837-1932, of Crossdrum, Oldcastle in Co Meath, and was born 22nd May 1880 and died 14th March 1956. They had two daughters:
a. Emily Rosalie Harman born 14th March 1917 and married Desmond O’Neill, a veterinary surgeon of Oldcastle, on 1st July 1953. They had a son:
i. William Hugh O’Neill born 2nd June 1954.
b. Elizabeth Margery Harman born 13th August 1919 and educated at Trinity, BA. On 23rd April 1952 she married John Copeland Cole, ‘Jackie’, of Redhills, Co Cavan, a son of John James Cole of Nahilla Park, Clover Hill, Co Cavan. They had three children:
i. Susan Elizabeth Cole born 14th August 1953.
ii. John Harman Cole born 25th April 1955.
iii. Jeannie Sophia Cole born 28th March 1957.
2. Emily (Mrs Shirley) born 11th May 1878 and on 8th June 1914 married Rev Robert Francis Shirley MA then of Kilmessan Rectory; but they later moved to Rathconnell Rectory near Killucan in Co Westmeath. They had three children:
a. John Richard Alexander Shirley, ‘Dick’ born on 10th April 1915. He died of acute diabetes.
b. Selina Agnes Shirley born 1st June 1917 and died unmarried.
c. Madeleine Emily Shirley was born 15th September 1918 and married on 20th April 1938 John Nathaniel Preston of Swainstown, Kilmessan. He was born 27th January 1915, the only son of Arthur John Dillon Preston who was killed in action that same year, and educated at Malvern. His grandfather, Major Arthur John Preston, 1841-1930, who inherited the place in 1903, left him Swainstown (18.7.4). They have five children:
i. Jennifer Beresford Preston born 20th January 1939.
ii. Meriel Tara Preston born 2nd January 1941.
iii. Madeleine Anne Preston born 24th April 1942.
iv. Judith Elizabeth Preston born 9th August 1943.
v. John Peter William Preston, ‘Punch’ born 28th July 1947, of Swainstown.
3. Richard Alexander Chaloner was born 2nd June 1879 and became a Lieutenant in the Royal Enniskillen Fusiliers and served in the Boer War. On 22nd April 1902 he died from wounds received at Rooival in Western Transvaal; he was wounded by a stray Boer bullet, which was fired a few days after the armistice, unfortunately no one in that area knew that the war was over.
4. Henrietta Frances Chaloner (Mrs Bomford) 1881 - 1970, married 1911 Trevor Broughton Bomford, 1880 - 1963.
5. Claud Willoughby Chaloner was born 22nd January 1882 and became a Major serving with the 3rd Battalion Royal Enniskillen Fusiliers. On 18th October 1918 he married Adelaide Winifred Grove, born 19th October 1888, youngest daughter of Colonel Alexander Grove of the Indian Army who settled in Northern Ireland. He inherited Kingsfort on the death of his mother in 1927, but meanwhile he and his wife ‘Winnie’ had settled at Cherrymount where they stayed; the bigger house of Kingsfort was leased for a while but in 1937 Willoughby sold it and some land, the house is now in ruins. On Willoughby’s death Cherrymount was also sold but it is still occupied. He died 18th January 1963 and she on 6th June 1970 having had two children:
a. Desmond Willoughby Richard Chaloner born 8th January 1920. Desmond is unmarried and living in England.
b. Nancy Winifred Chaloner born on 10th August 1921. She married Frank Louis Crosbie who changed his name to Cornwall when he inherited Rathmore, Co Kildare, from his uncle. He died from food poisoning. She married secondly Seton Pringle.
6. Nicola Chaloner born on 25th November 1884 and died two months later.
7. Shirley Chaloner was born on 22nd March 1886 and died at his school, King William College on the Isle of Man, on 30th May 1902, aged 16.
8. John Cole Chaloner was born on 27th May 1889. On 14th February 1922 he married Monica Katharine Roberts, daughter of Ralph William Westropp Roberts, MD. She was born on 12th November 1889 and he died on 12th January 1940 having had three daughters:
a. Charity Patricia Chaloner ‘Cherry’, born 17th March 1923 and married Henry FitzGibbon, MD. They have two sons, and two daughters:
i. John FitzGibbon.
ii. Thomas FitzGibbon.
iii. Frances FitzGibbon.
iv. Pamela FitzGibbon.
b. Mary Frances Jonet Chaloner born 16th December 1925 and in 1950 married Richard John Shackleton of Anna Liffey House at Lucan; their house is adjacent to their still operating water-mill producing flour. Richard is cousin of the explorer, Sir Ernest Shackleton. They have two daughters and two sons:
i. Christine Shackleton
ii. Jonet Shackleton
iii. Richard Shackleton
iv. Michael Shackleton
c. Henrietta Sophia Chaloner ‘Sophie’, born 29th December 1930 and married to Robert Twigg. They have a son and three daughters:
i. Robert Twigg.
ii. Nicola Twigg.
iii. Fiona Twigg.
iv. Sarah Twigg.
The Chaloners are said to be descendents of William the Conqueror: http://www.william1.co.uk/r21.htm
Trevor and Henrietta settled at Ashern, Manitoba, in the spring or early summer of 1911, and all their seven children were born there, the oldest in February 1912 and the youngest in January 1925.
Above left: Mrs Trevor Bomford (Henrietta Chaloner) of Ashern, with three of her children, (left to right) Claude, May and Dick, taken October 1918. Click on picture to see enlargement.
Above right: Trevor Broughton Bomford and Family at his 50th wedding anniversary in 1961 at Oakner, Manitoba, Canada. Back row: Claude, Henrietta, Trevor, Dick, John; front row May, Reg, Nora.
1. Elinor Henrietta Bomford was born on 8th February 1912 at Ashern, and died there aged 7 on 19th November 1919, in the great ‘flu epidemic of 1919’.
2. Richard Trevor Bomford was born 23rd February 1914 at Ashern and became a farmer at Oakner and later Hamiota, Manitoba. On 29th March 1943 Dick as he was known, married Myrtle Rosa, daughter of Harry Bridgeman of Bradwardine, Manitoba. He died on 20th September 1983, and Myrtle died on 23rd November 2003. They had five children:
a. Richard James Bomford born 21st December 1943 at Hamiota, Manitoba. Gained a BSc from Brandon University and became a farmer and research scientist at Brandon Agricultural Research Station. He also took over his father’s farm near Oakner. On 11th September 1965 he married Carol Ann Smith of Hamiota. Carol died on 30th April 2007 (Marci Vreeman email 22 Nov 2007). They had two daughters.
i. Kerry Lynne Bomford born 12th June 1969 at Calgary, Alberta. Kerry married Cameron Dale McConnell on 20th July 2002 and they have a son William James McConnell who was born on 1st December 2004 (Marci Vreeman email 22 Nov 2007).
ii. Marci Ann Bomford born 12th October 1972 at Calgary, Alberta (website). Marci married Dale Nathan Vreemanin 2002and they have two daughters,Maria Jade Bomford Vreeman born 4th May 2004, and Claudia Jean Bomford Vreeman born 11th November 2006 (Marci Vreeman email 15 Nov 2007).
b. Gwendoline Joyce Bomford born 17th January 1946 at Rivers, Manitoba and became a schoolteacher. On 8th July 1967 she married Keith McBurney, a real estate insurer. They live at Cobble Hill, British Columbia and have four children, two boys and two twin girls.
i. William Kurt McBurney, born 16th October 1968 at Souris, Manitoba. Married 14th December 1991 to Shannon Smiley. Marriage dissolved.
ii. Kenton Reid McBurney, born 12th July 1970 at Souris, Manitoba.
iii & iv. Kimberley Diane McBurney and Kelly Eileen McBurney, born 11th January 1972.
iv. Kelly was married 31st August 1996 to Mitch Antoniuk of Duncan, British Colombia. Kelly and Mitch have two girls:
1. Emma May, born October 1998.
2. Olivia Rose, born 17th July 2000.
c. Eileen May Bomford born 14th April 1949 at Hamiota, Manitoba. In 1968 she married William John Paddock, a schoolteacher at Cartwight, Manitoba. They have two boys and a girl:
i. Michael John Paddock, born 15th October 1968. Married 1990 to Tammy Martens, and they have two girls and a boy:
1. Kelsey Morgan Paddock, born 5th June 1991.
2. Ryan Michael Scott Paddock, born 6th July 1993.
3. Jamie Leeann Paddock, born 29th November 1994.
ii. Leisa Jo-Ann Paddock, born 2nd December 1971.
iii. Clinton David Troy Paddock, born 28th June 1974. Married 18th July 1998 to Trisha Dawn Phillips. They have a son:
1. Brett Jayden Paddock, born 31st May 2000.
d. Mervyn Harry Trevor Bomford, born 16th June 1952 at Hamiota, Manitoba and entered into the automobile and implement business at Boissevain, Manitoba. On 26th February 1972 he married Joan Wright of Brandon and they have three children:
i. Tari Dawn Bomford born 6th December 1973 at Brandon, Manitoba. In May 1994 she married Barry Conrad and has two children:
1. Sawyer Barry Conrad, born 24th December 1996 at Brandon.
2. Mitchell Storm Conrad, born 22nd May 1998 at Brandon.
ii. Richard Robert Trevor Bomford born 14th June 1975 at Brandon, Manitoba, and died April 1999 after a car accident.
iii. Sean Patrick Bomford born 12th May 1977 at Hamiota, Manitoba. Sean and partner Char have two children:
1. Kaitlyn Ciara, born November 1998.
2. Justin Richard, born 5th August 2000.
e. Dianna Lynne Bomford, born 21st August 1960 at Hamiota, Manitoba and on 15th July 1978 she married Douglas Calverley of Melita, Manitoba. They have three children, and several grandchildren (Dianna Calverly: Doug's mobile service email 17 Mar 2009; email 9 Nov 2012)
i. Amanda Michelle Calverley, born 19th November 1981 at Melita, married Thomas Chicoine on 23 November 2002 and had issue.
1. Sawyer ThomasChicoine, b 29 February 2004
2. Mackenzie FaithChicoine, b 6 October 2005
3. Sienna MichelleChicoine, b 26 November 2006
4. Makayla RyanneChicoine, b 14 August 2008
ii. Garrett James Calverley, born 18 April 1984 at Melita, married Laura Deitrich on 6 October 2007 and had issue.
1. Dylan Jonathan Calverley, b 9 January 2007
2. Rhett Douglas Calverley, born 11 September 2011
3. Stran James Calverley, born 22 September 2012
iii. Sarah Lynne Calverley, born 21 December 1987 at Melita, married Seth Martens and had issue.
1. Jacob Douglas Martens, b 16 June 2007
2. ShayLynne Elizabeth Martens, b 24 March 2009
3. Noah BenjimanMartens,born 20 December 2011
3. Claude Edmund John Bomford born 28th July 1916 at Ashern. Claude arrived, with his parents, brothers and sisters at Oak River, Manitoba, in April 1928, where he completed high school in 1931. Claudemarried on 8th April 1941 Lucy Joyce, another daughter of Harry Bridgeman. After farming at Rivers and Oak River, they moved into the Palmerston district in October 1946, taking up residence on NW 4-13-25 W1 (known as the 'Bob Kidd farm').They moved into Crandall in 1956 taking over the store business of the late J T Clark. This venture came to a sad end in November 1959, being destroyed by fire. In February 1960 Claude obtained the position as District Supervisor of the newly formed Weed Control District and they moved to Hamiota. He remained in this position until 1965.In 1961 they sold their farm in the Palmerston district to Mr George Gardham. In 1965 they purchased a farm three miles west of Hamiota (Thornton farm). For the next two years, Claude travelled extensively thought Manitoba and Saskatchewan as Promotional Adviser with chemical companies in the field of herbicides, and also worked with the Manitoba Department of Highways. In 1971 they lived in Brandon and Claude was employed as custodian at the Western Manitoba Centennial Auditorium.While in Palmerston and Crandall districts, Claude was Councillor for Ward 5, Rural Municipality of Miniota, for six years, and also served on the Board of Stewards of the Crandall United Church (from The Chronicles of Crandall, 1971: Kim Bomford email 9 Jan 2009).Claude retired to Armstrong, British Columbia, and died 15th March 1992. Their two children:
a. Alvin John Bomford, born 25th October 1942 at Hamiota, Manitoba. On 1st September 1962 he married Donna Kirk of Hamiota. He works in the building construction business at Calgary, Alberta. They have two children:
i. Michael Shaun Bomford born 4th January 1965, a musician, married 3 August 1996 Lisa Dawn Cooper, born 19th April 1976 at “Come-by-Chance” in Newfoundland, and they have two children:
1. Sarah Michelle Bomford, born 21st November 1997.
2. Meghan Dawn Bomford, born 26 July 1999.
ii. Donna Michelle Bomford, born 31st May 1966, a nurse. On 10th September 1994 she married Allan Driver, born 4th November 1965 in Scotland and have 2 children:
1. Jesse Allan Driver, born 16th December 1993 at Calgary.
2. Jarrid Michael Driver, born 26th May 1996 at Calgary.
b. Margery Anne Bomford, born 27th May 1945 at Hamiota, Manitoba, became a stenographer. She is a single parent and has a son:
4. Emily May Bomford born at Ashern on 11th February 1918 and became a stenographer, retired to Comox, British Columbia, and then moved to Victoria, British Columbia. She is (2005) suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. On 9th September 1944 she married Frederick Edward Julyan. He was a warrant officer in the Royal Canadian Engineers in World War II and was later employed as an Engineer with the Manitoba Department of Highways. He died 19th April 1979. They had two children:
a. Charles Richard Julyan born 23rd February 1947 at Winnipeg, Manitoba, became an insurance agent in Comox. On 6th September 1969 he married Judith Anne, daughter of Alvin Klatt of Morden, Manitoba. The marriage was dissolved 2001. They have two daughters:
i. Erin Maureen Julyan, born 8th January 1977, married 26th February 2004 in Mexico, David Choboter (a dentist).
ii. Heather Anne Julyan, born 16th October 1982.
b. Lorna May Julyan, born 7th November 1950 at Winnipeg, Manitoba, became a librarian. On 12th May 1979 she married Alain Brunel, M Ed. They live in Victoria, British Columbia.
5. John Chaloner Bomford born 14th October 1920 at Ashern, served in the Royal Canadian Signal Corps, 3rd Division, during World War II (photo 1942). He then became a farmer near Oak River, and retired to Oak River. On 5th November 1946 he married Viola Elizabeth, ‘Lena’, daughter of William Bedwell of Oak River. She died in April 1955 and he died 26th February 2001, aged 80. They had two children:
a. William John Larry Bomford born 2nd August 1947 at Oak River, Manitoba, and entered the building construction industry at Medicine Hat, Alberta. In 1967 he married Sheila Pohl of Gladstone, Manitoba. They have two children:
i. Patrick John Bomford, born 22nd March 1968. In 1992 he married Caroline Jane (Kraska) who was born 29th December 1969. They have 2 boys:
1. Mathew John Henry Bomford, born 11th April 1997 at Calgary.
2. Bradley Anthony Paul Bomford, born 27th May 1998 at Calgary.
ii. Theresa Dawn Bomford born 28th June 1971 and has a child (single parent):
1. Ashley Lynn Bomford, born 29th January 1994.
b. Ethel Lenore Bomford born 19th February 1950 at Oak River, Manitoba, and became a stenographer. On 5th July 1969 she married Allan Williams of Birtle, Manitoba. They have two girls:
i. Allana Rae Williams born 15th March 1973.
ii. Dana Fay Williams born 23rd November 1976.
6. Norah Gwendoline Annella Bomford born 28th May 1922 at Ashern. On 2nd October 1940 she married Charles Leonard Knight, son of Harry Knight of Oakner, Manitoba. In World War II he served as a flying officer in the Royal Canadian Air Force, Squadron 407. He later became a farmer at Oakner, Manitoba but then retired to Hamiota, Manitoba. Nora died 7th July 1999 with Alzheimer’s disease. (Photo, Nora Knight in 1941 at Winnipeg). There are four children:
a. Elinor May Knight born 30th January 1942 at Hamiota, Manitoba, and became a schoolteacher. On 19th August 1961 she married Roy James Little, son of Allan Little of Brandon. Elinor died on 30th March 1970 having had a girl and a boy:
i. Karen Allision Little, born 1st October 1963, married on 18th November 1989 Larry Evan Houck and has two girls:
1. Haley Elinor Houck, born 30th October 1990 at Brandon.
2. Erin Elizabeth Houck, born 5th February 1994.
ii. Kevin Charles Little born 13th September 1966, is a fireman of Winnipeg. On 10th September 1994 he married Shannon McCormick, born 14th October 1966. They had one son before the marriage was dissolved in April 1996:
1. Brandon Roy Little, born 16th February 1994.
b. Phyllis Noreen Knight born 14th January 1947 at Hamiota and became a nurse. On 28th August 1968 she married firstly Dennis Cosgrove of Souris, Manitoba. They had two girls:
i. Kelly Lee Cosgrove, born 17th February 1969.
ii. Tracey Elinor Cosgrove, born 12th May 1970. On 1st August 1992 she married Steven Latell of Brandon, born 29th November 1970. They have a daughter:
1. Allison Jade Latell born 30th April 1997 at Brandan.
The marriage was dissolved in 1972 and Phyllis married secondly on 7th October 1972 Ronald William Houck, a farmer of Hamiota, and had four more children:
iii. Brian Ronald Houck, born 28th December 1973.
iv. Jody Laurie Houck, born 9th October 1975.
v. Brett Charles Houck, born 16th July 1978.
vi. Shane Richard Houck, born 17th June 1980.
c. Gordon Charles Knight born 25th August 1950 at Hamiota, became a farmer and accountant at Hamiota. On 5th September 1970 he married Joyce Lorraine daughter of Harold Hunter of Decker, Manitoba. Their two boys are:
i. Carey Brendan Knight born 31st March 1974.
ii. Timothy Darren Knight born 30th January 1977.
d. Ronald Murray Knight born 30th October 1956 at Hamiota, also became a farmer and accountant. On 20th December 1980 he married Airdrie Ann Stewart and their three children are:
i. Jeffrey Stewart Knight, born 8th November 1984.
ii. Meridith Blair Knight, born 9th January 1989.
iii. Justin Charles Knight, born 18th November 1992.
7. Reginald Hugh Bomford, born 7th January 1925 at Ashern, worked originally at Vulcan, Alberta, but became Public Works Superintendent at Bowden in Alberta. On 22nd November 1947 he married Norma, daughter of John Ferguson of Rivers, Manitoba. She died in 23rd July 1991 and he died on 21st February 2003 of Alzheimer’s disease. They had three children:
a. Robert Reginald Bomford born, 30th September 1949. On 28th June 1973 he married Crystal Olsen. They live at Vulcan, Alberta and have two children:
i. Tracy Bomford, born 14th January 1975. She and her partner Wade have three children, two girls and a boy:
1. Jayde Michelle Bomford, born 26th May 1998.
2. Ryder, born 2000.
3. Regan Trai, born 23rd September 2004.
ii. Angela Bomford, born 31st October 1978.
b. Carol Lynn Bomford, born 23th September 1953 at Calgary, Alberta, and married firstly Michael Calvert on 9th October 1971, a constable in the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. Their two children are:
i. Michael Jeffrey Hugh Calvert, born 12th August 1972 and married 25th January 1997 Karla Monique Mitchell who was born 18th January 1975. They have a boy:
1. Mitchell Geoffrey Calvert, born 18th May 1997.
ii. Amanda Dawn Calvert, born 16th October 1979.
The marriage was dissolved and on 12th August 1989 Carol Lynn married secondly Jerry Morin of High River, Alberta.
c. Patricia Louise Bomford, born 12th August 1958, and on 1st October 1977 married Kent Davie of Vulcan. Their children are:
i. Kendra Lesley Davie born 11th October 1980 at Vulcan.
ii. Reed Robert Reginald Davie born 7th December 1982 at Vulcan.
iii. Kristan Patricia Davie born 9th May 1984. Kristan has a daughter:
1. Tessa, born 5th December 2004.
iv. Jenna Michelle Davie born 26th January 1986 at Vulcan.
So Trevor and Henrietta had 7 children, 18 grandchildren and 45 great grand children, all in Canada, and of whom only 14 bear the name Bomford.
William Harold, known in the family as ‘Willie’, was the youngest of John Francis’ children, being born on New Year’s Day 1885, Thursday 1st January, at Drumlargan and baptised at Agher Church on 1st February. His godmother was his sister Anna Arbella, Annella, later Mrs Longfield, and his godfathers were his brother George Lyndon and Francis George Hodder, Bachelor of Law, (no information). It is not known where he went to school but unlike his brothers he did not go to Denstone. There is reference to him in 1899 when he was 14 in one of Elinor’s letters to his father dated 16th December, “...there is a dreadful wind. I hope it will be calm for Willie on Monday night”, (32.7, No 15), the supposition is that Willie was returning home for the Christmas holidays from his school in England, wherever that was. Another, more amusing reference to him as a youth was on the fly-leaf of Elinor’s prayer book which for many years lay in the Oakley Park pew in Kells Church, it read “Tell Willie not to stare.” There is also a report that Willie was a ‘sickly’ child, but the source of this report has been forgotten though it might account for the fact that Willie did not go to Denstone; however a more likely reason is a shortage of funds in the family at that time. Wherever he went to school he completed his education at Trinity College in Dublin and graduated in 1908 as a Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (FRCSI) and a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians in Ireland (FRCPhI). After graduating he became a House Surgeon of York Dispensary: the 1911 UK census records him as resident medical officer, with Duncan Thomas, at the Dispensary, Duncombe Place, York, Yorkshire. Later that year he took up an appointment as a District Medical Officer in the Fiji Colonial Service. He went to Fiji via America following the route of his elder brother George to Ellis Island fifteen years before. Ellis Island was the point of entry to New York where he arrived on the 26th August 1911 on the vessel “Philadelphia” from Southampton. The Ellis Island records show that he was aged 26, a physician travelling to Fiji who paid his own fare. His health was good, he was not deformed, and 5’ 9” in height. His complexion was fair and he had black hair and brown eyes. His last permanent address was Park (Oakley was omitted), Kells, County Meath, where he was living with his parents.
At this date many of the family were in India, Australia and New Zealand, but the only family connection with Fiji appears to have been Sir Francis Winter and his father George Winter, a second cousin of John Francis; the father George Winter bought an estate at Levuka, Fiji, and his eldest son became Attorney-General of Fiji, but in 1888 transferred to New Guinea (18.7.2). In 1903 Sir Francis married a daughter of Sir George Moore, the Crown Surveyor of Fiji, who lived at Suva. Whether the Winters were alive in 1910 is not known, but the Moore family were still at Suva. It is thought that William Harold had an introduction to the islands through these families.
It is likely that when he first arrived in the islands he was moved from place to place, but he was soon settled at the hospital at Suva, the capital. There he met his future wife, Bessie Matthews, a nurse at the hospital who was born on 8th June 1886. They were married on 21st December 1912 at Drekinikilo. Bessie, or more correctly, Elizabeth Kathleen, was the daughter of Thomas Burlton Matthews who had a cotton estate at Drekinikilo on the Rewa River, near Suva; the estate was in the wrong place for cotton and the crops were lost three years in succession through rain and mildew. The other Bomford / Matthews marriage was in 1933 when Bessie’s younger brother Bill married May Shelford who was a niece of William Harold Bomford (33.7.2).
William Harold had four children before he died on 31st March 1920 at Suva at the early age of 34. He was due to go to Ireland on leave in 1920 and since he had a hernia he decided to have the operation in Dublin so that his leave would be extended; unfortunately just before he left he became impatient with a servant who was trying to lift a heavy trunk and lifted it himself, the hernia strangulated and this was fatal in those days.
A short obituary was found in the Dublin Journal of Medical Science, Volume CXLIX of May 1920: “Bomford, William Harold, died March 31st 1920. Born Co Meath 1885. Educated, RCSI, LRCP, and SI 1908. Late House Surgeon, York Dispensary; Government Medical Officer, Fiji Civil Service. Died at Suva, Fiji.” The Bomford plaque in Kells Church also commemorates his death.
Bessie took her young family, the eldest being only 6, to Takapuna across the bay to the north of Auckland in New Zealand; there she bought a house which was conveniently near the beach, a good school and where she could get work as a nurse. She successfully raised her family, lived until she was 85 and died at Takapuna on 24th November 1971.
1. Stephen Robert William Bomford was born in Fiji on New Year’s Day 1914. He was educated at Takapuna Grammar School, St John’s Anglican College in Auckland from where he gained a scholarship to Auckland University, leaving as a Bachelor of Science in 1936. He became a chemist with the Colonial Sugar Refining Company, the same company that his uncle Billy Matthews was in, and then, at the outbreak of war, he joined the New Zealand Expeditionary Force and went to North Africa as a medical Assistant. On 21st October 1943 he was killed in a car accident in Egypt when returning from helping entertain troops.
2. Marie Elinor Bomford (Burke has Marie as Marie Elanor Bomford) was born in Auckland, New Zealand, on 12th October 1915 and brought up there. She trained as a kindergarten teacher and met her future husband in 1936 but, because of money shortage, they did not get married until 22nd May 1941. Her husband Alan Kennedy Wylie, son of Douglas Stuart Wylie (marriage dissolved in 1921) of Roseville, Sydney, Australia, was born on 3rd July 1916 in Auckland, NZ. Alan won a bursary to Auckland University and in 1936 got his science degree, concentrating on mathematics, but he found time to play cricket for the university. Because no work was to be found in New Zealand he went to Sydney, Australia, to take the second part of his exam (M Sc) and where he had been promised work in life assurance. In 1940 he became an associate of the Institute of Actuaries and later became a Fellow. After war service in the Air Force from 1941 to 1946, he and Marie moved around, Sydney until 1948, then 1948 - 1953 in Perth, 1954 - 1955 in Melbourne, 1955 - 1959 in Wellington New Zealand, 1960 - 1965 in Sydney again, this time as General Manager of Friend’s Provident Life Office. After a spell in industry, which took him to USA and the UK, he became a consultant in actuarial work. They retired to New South Wales, Alan is still alive but Marie died on 10th June 1990 having suffered for some years from Alzheimer’s disease. They had four children, all married and all living in Australia.
a. Elizabeth Jean Kennedy Wylie was born at Hamilton, Victoria, on 2 March 1944; she married firstly Ross Alexander Cole, LLB, of Sydney (Burke dates this marriage as 2 March 1964). They had three children:
i. Stephanie Ann Cole, born 19th August 1966 and married Stephen Croft in 1989
ii. Virginia Marie, ‘Ginny’, born 29th December 1967 and married Angus Meikle in 1990.
iii. Nicholas Alexander Cole, born 12th August 1970, and serving with the Police Force.
Elizabeth married secondly Robert Sayers in 1991.
b. Robert John Wylie, born 20th August 1949, went to university (BA) and became an Associate of the Institute of Actuaries (AIA). On 23rd November 1971 in Perth he married Antoinette Ristuccia, born 14th January 1950. They have:
i. Mark Kennedy Wylie, born 19th July 1973.
ii. Jacqueline Wylie, born 1975.
iii. Michael Wylie, born November 1976.
iv. Paul Wylie, born 8th July 1979.
v. and Peter Wylie, born 1984.
c. David Alan Wylie, born 13th March 1951 and graduated BA in economics. In September 1985 he married Robyn and they have one son:
i. Steven Wylie, born 8th July 1986.
d. Heather Joan Wylie, born 8th February 1953 and graduated BA in 1973. On 9th May 1974 she married William ‘Bill’ Alexander Hughes Webster, son of Albert Webster of Gleniffer, Glasgow. Their children are:
i. Catriona Webster, born July 1982.
ii. Malcolm Webster, born 19th December 1983.
3. John Hamilton Bomford was born in Auckland on 14th June 1918. He became a cub reporter with the New Zealand Herald but on the outbreak of war joined the Royal New Zealand Air Force. He was trained in Canada on bombers, went to England and saw action over Germany on Blenheims. On 18th October 1942 he was doing a conversion course on Lancasters when he came in to land, touched down and for some reason took off again, banked the wrong way and flew straight into the ground. Appendix G indicates that he died in Egypt.
4. Marguerite May Jane Bomford, ‘Peggy’, was born in Fiji on 19th August 1919 and educated at Auckland University. Having got her BA she became a teacher. She married Hans Georg Frimmel, a son of Erwin Franz Maria Frimmel von Traisenau of Baumannstrasse, Vienna. They met at a youth camp in England in 1948 and became engaged. Unfortunately he came from the Russian Zone of Vienna and so had difficulty in emigrating to New Zealand. However finally everything was arranged and they were married on 22nd September 1951. Photo – Peggy and Hans. Peggy died of Alzheimer’s disease in September 1997 and Hans died in Auckland, New Zealand in 2003. There are three children:
a. Robert Erwin Frimmel, born 7th September 1953 and graduated B Sc in 1974. In 1982 he married Jay Moore and they are living in North Carolina, USA, with their son Stephen. They have three children:
i. Stephen Frimmel, born 1990.
ii. John Frimmel, born c1993.
iii. Allison, born c1995.
b. Margaret Jane Frimmel, born 21st June 1955, and married in 1974 to R. Goldingham. They have no children.
c. Sonia Mary Frimmel was born on 26th July 1961, married Keith Grant Broome in 1998 and lives at Pirongia, New Zealand.
Alan Wylie and later, quite independently, May Julyan brought to my notice the subject of Alzheimer’s disease, loss of memory in old age. Marie Wylie (Bomford), Peggy Frimmel (Bomford), Trevor Bomford and his daughters May Julyan and Norah Knight, and his sons Claude (died 1992) and Reginald (died 2003), all suffered from this hereditary disease to such an extent that not only did they not recognise friends and relations, but would go out, forget why they went out and, much worse, would not remember where they lived.
When Peggy Frimmel visited Oakley Park and other relations soon after the war ended, she thought that both George Lyndon Bomford and his sister May Constable also suffered from it. It has further been suggested that Arbella Bomford, who died in 1900, and her daughter Adela may have had the same disease.
Marie Wylie, Peggy Frimmel, Norah Knight and May Julyan have all been medically diagnosed as sufferers of Alzheimer’s disease and since it is hereditary there is no real reason to suppose that the others did not also have it.