Parish Register Newsletter: July 2009

Welcome one and all to the parishregister July newsletter. Firstly, I must apologise for the July newsletter appearing in August; I've been a naughty boy and taken a holiday! Should have sent it before you went away, do I hear you say? Well I thought about it, but a book and a map, which I wanted to put in this month's addition, hadn't arrived, and it was touch and go whether the Merchant Taylors CD and searchable database would be ready. Also I hoped to be back by Friday and get it out then but unfortunately events conspired against me and I only got back at five o'clock this morning! As it happens, unfortunately the Merchant Taylors has hit a couple of snags, but the CD is going into production this week and the searchable database should appear on the site around the same time.

Searchable Databases 

Christchurch Spitalfields 1763-1795 9700 odd entries yet again expertly transcribed by Jim Sheppard at his usual phenomenal rate. This was not an easy database to transcribe, the film was not in the best condition, but once again Jim has come up trumps, cheers Jim! This should be up-loaded within the next week or so, so keep an eye on the site if you're itching to search this one.

 To search the site click here


New CDs

The Merchant Taylors 1520-1929 (Exclusive to Docklands Ancestors!)

This is a transcription of the original 36000 index consisting of all 4 volumes in alphabetical order.
The index gives the name, date of freedom, method of admission (apprenticeship, patrimony or redemption), name of master if by apprenticeship, date of election to livery, and ‘Remarks’.

To pre-order this CD, which will be available any day now,at the introductory price of £24.95, please click here: Merchant Taylors

In transcription

St George in the East 1848-1861

St George in the East 1861-1877

St Dunstan Stepney 1837-1848 

St John Wapping 1665-1707

Other selected products

Devastated London - The Bombed City As Seen From A Barrage Balloon

Drawn by Cecil Brown with notes by Ralph Hyde, published by The London Topographical Society


To buy this (folded) map click here: Devastated London

Ecclesiastical Map-County of London 1903 


Price: £5.00 To buy this map please click here

London and It's Environs 1813


Price: £3.95 To buy this map please click here

Rocque's 1745 Survey of London


Price: £7.95 To buy this map please click here

To view our comprehensive Alan Godfrey maps collection please click here

Docklands Ancestors Parish Register CDs (64 CDs now to choose from)

East of London FHS Publications

Selected product:

Census 1891 West Ham Part 1 RG12/1310 - 1325

Including the areas of Stratford: Custom House also parts of Canning Town & Plaistow.

Price: £10.00 

Docklands Ancestors Parish Register CDs - Compendiums

Special offer! Compendium 5, normal price £49.95 (this was obviously a bargain already as the ten separate CDs would cost around £80) now only £29.95, a saving of £20 or £50 which ever way you want to look at it!!

Volume 51 St Mary, Whitechapel Baptism Registers 1832-1842
Volume 52 St George in the East Baptism Registers 1795-1808
Volume 53 St Mary Magdalen, Bermondsey Baptism Registers 1813-1822
Volume 54 St Mary Newington, Southwark Baptism Registers 1837-1842
Volume 55 St Anne, Limehouse Baptism Registers 1783-1812
Volume 56 St Dunstan, Stepney Baptism Registers 1826-1835
Volume 57 St Mary, Whitechapel Baptism Registers 1758-1774
Volume 58 St Dunstan, Stepney Baptism Registers 1770-1798
Volume 59 Christ Church, Stepney Baptism Registers 1842-1860
Volume 60 All Saints, Mile End Baptism Registers 1840-1880

If you'd like to take advantage of this amazing, once in a lifetime offer, please click here  special offer

Southwark Parish Registers 


St George in the East Parish Registers Part I 1729-1826

Isle of Dogs Parish Registers

Limehouse Parish Registers

Stepney Parish Registers

Wapping Parish Registers 

Watermen & Lightermen

Selected product:

Company of Watermen Compilation CD 1

This CD comprises the following titles:

1.Company of Watermen & Lightermen Apprenticeship Bindings Indexes 1692-1949
2.Register of licences granted by Corportation of Trinity House to ex-mariners to ply their trade as watermen working on the River Thames 1829-1864
3. Thames Watermen & Lightermen (also wives and widows) pensioners admitted for relief 1794-1837
4. Watermen & Lightermen reassigned to another master during their apprenticeship period 1688-1908

Price if bought seperately: £57.80
Saving: £17.85

Price £39.95 (To buy this CD please click on the title)

If nothing has tickled your fancy but still would like to look around our shop please click here

Other Bits and Bobs

I recently received an e-mail from Rosemary about her great grandfather which included a very interesting newspaper article from the 1930s which she thought might be of interest, and once you've read it I'm sure you'll agree it definitely is. She also sent me a photograph with William Fishlock  seated on the grass furthest left of photo. He was born 1858 ,and lived in Chiswick. She was wondering if anyone might recognise the place or even some of the others in the picture. If you can help then please e-mail me!

" William Fishlock ( William E Fishlock my gt grandfather), his father before him (William J); and a fine well set-up man, his son, make three generations of licensed lightermen of the City of London. As a boy of 6, William often went trips on the barge 'Edith' of which his father was a skipper and he keenly remembers one voyage from Brentford to Sea Reach (nr Southend) for sand or gravel. They got down alright and when the tide had ebbed away and left them high and dry on the Bligh sand they loaded up, which has to be done by hand and shovel and is pretty hard work.   As sometimes happens, when the tide turned and the flood began to make, the wind freshened up, until by the time she was again afloat , it was blowing hard westerly and before long there was a whole gale meeting them. The skipper had his wife , daughter and young son on board and for safety sent them all below, afterwards battening everything down and locking them in. Those who have used the river know what such a gale and a strong flood tide means, and how nasty a sea can get up under those conditions, especially when a sand laden barge has to beat up to windward through it, which, however, this one did and in the end brought up off Gravesend, where there was a little shelter. It can be guessed how the poor women folk below felt about it ,and as to the boy William Fishlock says that was the last time in his life he ever kept below deck in bad weather, preffering to take his chance on deck whatever happened. In time and as he grew up, he kept on the river and later found himself mate and then skipper of different barges the "Lydia", "New John" and "Oliver" all about 70 tons and smaller then than now and all under sail. In those days barges were never towed; they sailed everywhere, and he recalls how it was a common sight to see a fleet of 20 or 30 of them outside Brentford and if the wind  was (....erly?) or otherwise ahead, have to (.....?) practically the whole way to (...?) a distance of 50 miles at the least. One experience that has possibly never happened to any other man. It occured later on, about middle life when it chanced that a barge he was master of, with another man as mate, was towing down the river. It was at the time when Cannon street railway bridge was building, and the craft he was on was a tank to hold liquids, having a cargo from brentford gas works and being three quarters full, everything was strongly battened down.As they were passing through an archway of the bridge, a sudden set of tide threw her up against one of the piers, this impact caused her to heel over, which in turn made her liquid cargo surge heavily and started a roll which made her turn turtle completely and come up on the other side. Strangely the rolling motion once started, continued  and again she turned turtle, again coming up on  the other side. The mate, who had been forward, had jumped overboard and swum clear, but W Fishlock who was aft, had clung to a rope fixed to the craft's sidee, which steadied the tiller,and he of course went round and under water with the ship. Finally she again floated on an even keel and he was rescued as quickly as possible though at the "far end" , and into an ambulance and hurried off to hospital where he had to spend a month before getting right again after his narrow squeak. When Thorneycrofts were busy building T.B.D. there was at launching times a great deal of traffic on the river, and there were always many Admiralty people about on their 'lawful occasions', it fell to W.Fishlock's lot to especially attend to these and to take them about in his small rowing boat wherever they wished to go. On such occasions a good deal of paint and varnish would be expended to smarten up his boat. A lighterman's life is not an easy matter as far as working hours go and that it is a dangerous calling goes without saying. In the end that was the undoing of W.Fishlock , as in February last he tripped over the coaming of the hold and seriously damaged his knee, which at the age of 72 has but little chance of gettin well. "


ParishRegister Book Stall

New Tiltles

Bermondsey Boy-Memories of a Forgotten World by Tommy Steele 

Thirties Bermondsey was a thriving place, and it was in this bustling London borough that Thomas Hicks was born. Later, this Bermondsey boy would become known as Tommy Steele … In this engaging memoir Tommy recalls his childhood years growing up in Bermondsey. He relives with great fondness Saturdays as a young boy, spent gazing at the colourful posters for the Palladium and days spent wandering up Tower Bridge Road to Joyce’s Pie Shop for pie and mash. But he also brings to life with extraordinary vividness what it was like to live through the devastation of the Blitz. Yet it was once he joined the merchant navy and began singing and performing for his fellow seamen that his natural ability as an entertainer marked him out as a favourite. And it was while ashore in America that he became hooked on rock’n’roll and a legend was born …

A Bethnal Green Memoir: Recollections of Life in the 1930s-1950s -Memories of growing up in the East End between the wars by Derek Houghton

In this fascinating book Derek gives a colourful insight into life as a real "East Ender".  Personal recollections and lively anecdotes are combined with a thorough social history to show a neighbourhood undergoing huge change.  The memories recalled so openly by the author gives a snapshot of a community characterised by contrasts.  Neighbourliness and community spirit were highly valued, yet whole families often found themselves turned out onto the streets by ruthless landords. The locations: the Hackney Empire, Pellicci's cafe and Kelly Pie & Mash shop.... will be familiar to residents and provides reference points to those who research that area. The stories and characters described so vivdly are brought to life with a range of photographs.

East End Murders:From Jack the Ripper to Ronnie Kray By Neil Storey.
True Crime History

Maritime Greenwich By David Ramzan

Other selected Tiltles

My Ancestors were Thames Watermen: A Guide to Tracing your Thames Waterman and Lighterman(by James Legon)

East End: Four Centuries of London Life by Alan Palmer  (£10 off this month!)

Around Plaistow (Archive Photographs S.) by George Taylor

East End at War, by Rosemary Taylor and Chris Lloyd

Growing Up in a War by Brian Magee

Romford Photographic Memories

London Life in the 19th Century: A Human Awful Wonder of God
by Jerry White

One-Off Books (used, all good condition)

Who Lies Where-a guide to famous graves by Michael Kerrigan - an A-Z of famous and infamous dead (£3 plus p & p)

The Victory Cookbook by Marguerite Patten O.B.E - 200 of the recipes which helped the nation celebrate D-Day and up to 1954 (£3 plus p & p)

The Ship-Different types of vessels classed in Lloyd's Register book - Steam tramps and Cargo liners 1850-1950 (National Maritime Museum) (£3 plus p & p)

"Right up Your Street" A short History of Wood Street by the Walthamstow Historical Society by J.W.Howes and A.D. Law (£3 plus p & p)

Step By-Step Guide to Tracing Your Ancestors by D.M.Field (£3.50 plus p & p)

The City London's Square Mile by Alan Jenkins (£4 plus p & p)

The chapels in the Tower of London (The chapel Royal of St. Peter ad Vincula and the Chapel of St.John The Evangelist by The Reverend John F.M.Llewellyn (£3 plus p & p)

These second-hand titles are not on the site so if you would like to buy one please e-mail Yvonne at (first come first served!) and payment is by cheque only.

As recommended by Jim:

London in the Olden Time, a Topographical and Historical Memoir of London, Westminster, and Southwark, accompanying a Pictorial Map of the City and its Suburbs, as they existed in the reign of Henry VIII.

This is a truly fascinating map & book, providing the reader with a detailed and intimate peep into Britain's London near the end of the reign of the infamous Henry VIII, just before his dissolution of the monasteries. Or, to be more precise, this is the view offered by the wonderfully detailed and supposedly accurate, 52 in. by 40 in. pictorial map, one of the two parts of this book. The other part of the book is called, by the author William Newton, an "Accompanying Memoir" and it provides amazing detail of the origins, purpose and fates of hundreds of the buildings and locations which are illustrated on the map. This map is more than just the overhead plan of the city's streets, which is what this term normally implies, and the clue to why is in the word "pictorial." As well as providing a "to scale" layout of the streets, William has drawn in the profiles of the buildings - in the locations where they stand. This means you not only get to understand the city's layout, but you can get a first hand impression of what it would have been like to walk the streets. 

You'll find this book at

Useful Sites


Family History Societies Online

Yet another free site in which I've found more Legons living up in Lancashire in 1891. How they fit in with the other Legons on my tree is a mystery for now, but I'm sure I'll get to the bottom of it eventually!

The Anglo-Boer Wars 

There were two Boer Wars, one ran from 16 December 1880 - 23 March 1881 and the second from 9 October 1899 - 31 May 1902 both between the British and the settlers of Dutch origin (called Boere, Afrikaners or Voortrekkers) who lived in South Africa. These wars put an end to the two independent republics that they had founded. To find out more, as I have done just click on the title above.

Boer War surname, initials, rank, regiment,event place and date

Soldiers of the Queen in the Second Anglo-Boer War 1899-1902

Index to "Paupers in Workhouses 1861"

The full name of the pauper is given, followed by "The reason assigned why the Pauper in each case is unable to maintain himself or herself" and finally the full term of the relief in years and months. Another column in the report is headed "Whether or not the Pauper has been brought up in a District or Workhouse School". As this last column was imperfectly completed, the brief notes it contains have not been included here. However, all the other information is contained in the index. which is a strict alphabetical listing of individuals named in the report. (N.B. This on-line version is a 10% sample of the full index which is available on microfiche).

Ramblings from the Council Estate

As I said at the start I've just got back from my hols, 10 days in Brittany with my other half and my mum and step-dad. As usual we went on my motorbike, a Honda VFR800 for those of you in the know; a fantastic all-rounder, ideal for touring.... when it works! To be fair it nearly always works, however, it has a sixth sense and seems to know when it's going to be required to do high-mileage and looks for an excuse to get out of it! A couple of years ago the alternator went on the way back from Shrewsbury; then coming back from Wales the chain tried it's best to hop off! Oh yes, then on the way down to catch the ferry a the year before last the 10 year old exhaust blew a hole, then another, then why should this year be any different??? Well it wasn't; this time the alarm took on a life of it's own and switched itself on and off whenever it wanted, not when I wanted. I finally managed to fix (not quite the right term, bodge I mean) by wedging a small rock between the fuse holder and the battery, clever eh? So, what was the highlight of the holiday you ask, the scenery, meals out, the beach? Well they were all good but my effort to go to the toilet in the middle of the night seemed to amuse most people! In Brittany, at night, with the shutters closed, it's pitch black so when I wanted to have a Jimmy Riddle at about 2 a.m I obviously didn't want to wake everyone up by turning on the lights. So I carefully felt my way out of the bedroom and kept feeling my way along the walls until I got to the door, then carefully opened it and at that point my other half piped up 'what are you doing?' and turned the light on! I had gone full circle and arrived back in the bedroom! From then on I used a torch.

Oh yes, I forgot to give you the outcome of my little spat with AOL. Well, after my appeal against the pathetic offer made by AOL CISAS deemed that this offer was a perfectly reasonable one! Months of letter writing and phone calls and stress only worth £52, how ludicrous! All I can say is don't get into a dispute with AOL!

Remember I said I was going to run a half marathon next year? Well I've also entered a 10k run for Cancer Research in September, I thought I might as well as it will give me something to aim for and to keep me motivated. I'm aiming for 50 minutes, possibly 45, as long as training goes well. We had a sports day at school just before we broke up. A traditional event is the teachers' race'; a hundred yard dash. Last year against about 9 men (don't ask me where 9 male members of staff come from in a small primary school) I came near to the back. However, this year was different! No I didn't win, but I did come a creditable third, losing out to two youngsters, 20 years younger than me! Mind you, I did pay for it, my muscles were sore for the next 5 days!

More good news from school; as I've mentioned before, I work in two schools, teaching writing and maths to children who haven't, as yet, lived up to their true potential, shall we say. Well, they all sat the ludicrous SATs in May and we recently got the results, which brought a smile to my face. I'm pleased to say that nearly every child I taught achieved the level 4 that means they are now 'average' pupils and not struggling pupils. Being realistic, however, I've no doubt that after 6 weeks off, many of them will have forgotten half of what I've taught them!

I see hundreds of you had a look at the sneezing panda last month, so I thought you might like this one! Funny Animals

Fancy a joke to finish? 'course you do! A man and his wife, now in their 60's, were celebrating their 40th wedding anniversary. On their special day a good fairy came to them and said that because they had been so good that each one of them could have one wish. The wife wished for a trip around the world with her husband. Whoosh! Immediately she had airline/cruise tickets in her hands.
The man wished for a female companion 30 years younger... Whoosh...immediately he turned ninety!!!
Gotta love that fairy!

All the best

Jonathan and the team

(p.s-once again gremlins are in the newsletter and mucking about with the format-SORRY!)


-A Passion For Family History-

© Docklands Ancestors Ltd.