A detailed history of Winmour Cottage

Click on the date to go to the appropriate section

1649 - 1699  The Sturch Family
1699 – 1750  The Langston Family
1755 – 1774  Waites and Wyatts
1774 - 1806  The Bennetts
1806 – 1823  Samuel Churchill and Hannah Turner
1823 - 1840   Hopcrafts and Roses
1840 – 1877  Henry Dean
1877 – 1926  The Mullis family
1926 – 1994  Hirons, Hayward, Moreby and Goodison

1649 - 1699  The Sturch Family

The first item in the Winmour Deeds is an Indenture of sale between Richard Jakeman and William Sturch dated October the 1st 1649.  To put this into an historical context, King Charles the First was executed in January of that year as the Civil War came to an end.  An entry in the Deddington Parish Register a few years before had  noted “October the 23, 1642, was Edgehill Fight”.  Edgehill was no more than 12 miles away. In the  two years after 1642 at least eight soldiers (often unnamed) were buried in Deddington.

Richard Jakeman agreed to sell to William Sturch, for £15 - 5 shillings [£24K]:

“all that tenement containing fourteen foot of ground (both more or lesse) being parte of the cottage herebefore called or knowne by the name of Bunces together with a parcel of ground or backside thereunto belonging and adjoining lying & reaching from the north side of the said house or tenement unto the Widdow Jakemans pales or mound, the said house lying or being situate in Dedington aforesaid in a certain street or place called Phillcocke street on the north side of the house of John Tombs.”

That suggests that

a) The tenement building is 14 feet wide
b) It is/was part of a cottage called Bunces.  But it’s not clear whether it’s the “fourteen foot of ground” that the cottage is built on that belonged to Bunces Cottage or if the building itself was (an integral?) part of it.  
c) The property has a parcel of land on the north side stretching as far as “Widow Jakeman’s pales or mound’, implying that there is open land between this cottage and the next on the north side.  A later document confirms that another tenement was erected on this land around 1755.
d) There was, presumably, a house on Widdow Jakeman’s land to the north but it’s not clear that it butted up to Winmour’s plot, else why would there have been reference to her boundary  – the  “pales or mound”.  This is an interesting  phrase, commonly used in legal documents.  It probably comes from a translation of the Latin  “sepimentum”  meaning  a hedge, a pale, a mound or enclosure, so there was not necessarily a mound on the boundary.

In the Indenture Richard Jakeman is described as being a baker from Kertleton (Kirtlington). A Richard Jakeman married Elizabeth Arys in Deddington in 1837.  Elizabeth was the daughter of Hercules Aris of Hempton and in his Will of 1650 Hercules bequeathed her “tenne pounds” (equivalent to around £15K today] with a similar bequest to her sister Ann Jackman.  I'm confident that the Richard Jakeman who married Elizabeth is the same Richard who sold Winmour to William Sturch in 1649:

* I can find no children of this marriage baptised in Deddington and no relevant deaths, suggestive of a bride (Elizabeth Arys) who married someone from another parish and then went to live there.  There are three baptisms in Kirtlington which are probably relevant:

Feb 1638  Richard son of Richard, possibly buried 1642
Nov 1640  Thomas son of Richard and Elizabeth, possibly buried August 1641
Jul 1642 James son of Richard, looks to have survived and fathered at least seven children.

* Elizabeth Arys had a brother William.  A William Aris was a witness to the 1649 Jakeman to Sturch Indenture. 

There are several open questions with respect to Richard Jakeman: 
1. Did he have any connection to Widdow Jakeman who owned the property next door? 
2. Did he have any connection to the Jackman who married Ann Aris, his wife’s sister?
3. How did he come to own a house in Deddington?

William Sturch, who bought the property in 1649, was almost certainly born before the register started in 1631 so he is not easy to identify.  But, from the registers, William Sturch baptised a son Thomas in 1633, a son William in 1636 (who presumably died young) and another William in 1639.  This latter baptism gives his wife’s name as Elizabeth.  The couple possibly had an elder son, John.

A William Sturch was buried in 1665/6, followed by Widow Sturch in 1670.  Another William Sturch, probably William’s son of 1639,  married a Mary and they were baptising children in Deddington from 1663. She had a great propensity to give birth to twins, four sets if the parish register is to be believed, and another 7 children as well! Although many of these children did not survive to adulthood some did.  One was probably William, baptised in 1665, their first-born son.  Often, if a child died their name would be "reused" by a later child, particuarly if it was significant like a father’s or grandfather’s name.  There’s no evidence of a re-use of the name William amongst William and Mary’s children so we may assume that William 1665 survived.

So, we have three William Sturchs, almost certainly father, son and grandson.  I speculate that father William bought Winmour in 1649.  He died in 1665/6 and his son William.1639 inherited the property.  This William died 1698, and was buried on May 8th, so we may expect that his son William inherited.  However, in a Release document dated February 18th 1698 (actually 1699 because the new year started on March 26th until the calendar was changed in 1752) William Sturch passed his interest in the property to his mother Mary for a payment of 20 shillings “in consideration of the natural love and affection which he…hath for his mother…and for her better maintenance and provision” and for “other valuable considerations”, a standard phrase used  to cover any other payment, if any. 

The Indenture states that the property was in the possession of John Clary.  I can find no information about him.

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1699 – 1750  The Langston Family

On January 15th 1699 Mary Sturch, “widdowe” (who could not sign her name) sold the property to John Langston of Deddington, Gentleman,  for £13 10s.  (£22K at today’s prices).  This was, presumably “for her better maintenance and provision” as mentioned by her son in the 1698 document.   

Witnesses to the agreement were Joseph Busby, Joseph Sturch and William Cooper  Could Joseph Sturch be Mary’s son who was born 1671?

Two items in the Public Records Office which might bear researching are from the Six Clerks Office in the Court of Chancery (shades of Jarndyce and Jarndyce!).  This office usually covered disputes and depositions about inheritance/lands/trusts/mortgages/debts and marriage settlements.  There’s no guarantee that these are people from Deddington but it’s a strong possibility.  The documents may turn out to be copies of the 1699 Indenture.

Both documents are dated between 1649 and 1714
C22/547/40  Sturch v. Langston
C22/548/38  Sturch v. Langston

There are a number of entries in the Parish Register relating to Mr. John Langston and his family.  He married a woman with the first name “Love” around 1670.  This is probabely Love Appletree, baptised May 20th 1648, daughter of Richard and Mary.  John and Love had a minimum of  8 children of whom at least 4 died young:

a)  Love baptised about 1670 and buried in 1680 
b) John baptised 1675, buried 1676
c) Ann baptised 1678, buried in 1725, spinster
d) John baptised 1683, buried 1683.
e) Sarah buried 1683
f) Jane baptised 1684, possibly married Belchier
g) Elizabeth, buried 1750, a spinster
h) Mary, married James Laserre, died 1738.

John’s wife Love was buried in 1700 and he in 1707, both in Deddington..

His daughter “Mrs Ann Langston” was buried in Deddington in 1725.  The “Mrs.” was a common title for any Gentlewoman, married or not.  Her Will is in the Public Records Office in Kew: Ann Langston of Deddington, Gentle[wo]man, probate granted 1726.

His daughter Mary married James Lasserre (of London?) and they had at least 3 children, Love, Jane and James.  James jnr. became a Vicar, inheriting his aunt Elizabeth's house in New Street in 1750.  He was buried in Deddington in 1759.  His mother Mary Lasserre died in 1738 and her husband James in 1749.

John’s third adult daughter Elizabeth did not marry.  She was buried in Deddington in 1750.  Her Will is also in the PRO. The Wills of Ann and her sister Elizabeth give some clue as to how Winmour was passed through the Langston family to Catherine Waite, who owned it in 1755.

It’s likely that Ann and Elizabeth Langston jointly inherited Winmour after their father John’s death in 1707, not to live in but to provide income from rental. Ann died in 1725.  From the bequests in her Will she was clearly a woman of some wealth, one was to Catherine Waite:

“Item I give and bequeath my Moiety or half part of the house that John Rous now liveth in to my servant maid Katherine Wait during the term of her natural Life and it is my desire that my sister Elizabeth would do the same if the said Katherine Wait surviveth her that she may have the Rents and Proffitts of the whole house that the aforesaid John Rous liveth during her Life and then it may return as hereinafter mentioned   Item  I hereby give to the said Katherine Wait one gold ring.”

John Rous, the tenant mentioned, is possibly John who had married Sarah Rand in Deddington in 1704.  They had 4 children between 1707 and 1713.  Sarah Rowse, wife of John was buried in September 1813 shortly after their son John who was baptised July 18th and buried July 20th. There is also John Rous who had two children with his wife Ann in 1714 and 1718.  These are most likely one and the same man.  After his wife Sarah’s death in 1813 John was left with young children and the imperative in these cases was always a quick remarriage. 

Ann only gave Katherine Wait a half share in the property, and only for life.  At Elizabeth Langston’s death in 1750 she should have received the other half as per Ann’s Will, again, only for  the duration of her life.  But in Elizabeth’s Will there is no mention of the cottage in Philcote Street or any half-share for Catherine Waite.  Instead:

“I give devise and bequeath unto my servant Catherine Waite the Sum of One Hundred and twenty pounds of like lawfull Money to be paid unto her or unto her Executors Administrators or Assigns within twelve months after my decease  I likewise do give and bequeath unto my said servant Catherine Waite the one half of my Linen and half my Wearing Apparel and the Rents Sums and profits of my Orchards Gardens and Cows Commons for One year or until such time that she doth receive the aforesaid Sum of One hundred and twenty pounds”

One hundred and twenty pounds is worth around £180K today! 

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1755 – 1774  Waites and Wyatts

  It’s not clear how Catherine Waite actually came by the freehold of Winmour, perhaps Elizabeth Langston’s bequest enabled her to purchase it.   Catherine was buried on June 27th 1755. In her Will she mentions that there is a “new building” (built with money from her bequest?) next to the original cottage.   

Catherine left her property in Philcocke Street “excepting the New Building erected upon the same” to her brother John Wyatt and his wife Ann for their lifetimes.  After their deaths the property was to pass to  their son John and his heirs.  Son John was also bequeathed “all that my tenement being a New Building lately Erected in the Backside of the aforesaid messuage cottage or tenement”.  If John jnr. had no heirs then both properties passed to Catherine’s brother Richard (b. 1691) and his heirs at John’s death.

John Wyatt snr. was probably baptised on the 15th December 1689, son of Richard and Frances Wyatt, and John jnr. on February 3rd 1733.  The Parish Register shows the burial of two John Wyatts, one on January 9th 1756 and the other on September 12th 1768.  As John snr. wrote his will on November 25th 1755 I assume he was the one who died in 1756. In that Will he left all his possessions to his “dear and loving wife Anne”.

Ann died in October 1768 shortly after her son John.  He, apparently, had no descendants so his (and his parent’s) interest in Winmour passed, eventually, to his uncle Richard’s son William Wyatt.  William sold the cottage to William Bennett of Deddington by:

An Indenture made July 14th 1774 between William Wyatt of White Hart Court, Castle Street, Liecester [sic] Fields in the Parish of Saint Martin in the Fields in the County of Middlesex, Goldbeater.  Eldest Son and Heir at law of Richard Wyatt who was the Eldest Brother and Heir at Law of John Wyatt, late of Deddington, deceased AND William Bennett of Deddington, Weaver.”

In the Indenture William Bennett paid £25 [£34K today] ”for the absolute purchase and inheritance in fee simple of ..that Messuage, Cottage or Tenement with the Barn, Outbuildings, Yard, Gardens and Appurtenances situate, standing and being in Philcock Street, late in the possession of the said William Bennett and John Tilly and now of the said William Bennett.”

So William Bennett was already a tenant in the property.  The mention of John Tilly, for whom I can find no information, indicates that the property was already being let as two tenements, something that generally continued until around 1900.

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1774 - 1806  The Bennetts

It looks as if William Bennett occupied the cottage continuously after his 1774 purchase.  Given that he was weaver it’s very likely that he was using part of the property (the outbuildings?) as a weaving shed.  At that time almost all weaving was carried out by individual weavers working at their looms in their own homes.

On January 4th 1790 William Bennett, weaver, secured a mortgage on the property from Richard Bignell of Banbury, Gentleman, amounting to £21 [£25K] plus interest. The Mortgage had to be repaid within six months otherwise Richard Bignell could possess the property. According to the Deed of Mortgage, William was living in one of the tenements and Ann Smith in the other.  Again, not surprisingly, I’ve found nothing about Ann Smith.

Things then took a slightly curious turn.  In January 1792 William Bennett made an Agreement with  Robert Killby, baker of Deddington to sell the freehold property to him for £40 [£48K].  No mention of Richard Bignell’s mortgage so perhaps William has redeemed it but was then short of money?  The sale agreement was executed on February 8th in an Indenture handled by Messrs. Field and Churchill, Solicitors in Deddington.  In that Indenture William sold “all that messuage...with the shop outbuildings yard and garden…” implying that he was working from the property in his [work]shop. The Public Records Office has the Will of John Bennett from Deddington, “Plush Weaver”, probated in 1807.  Could this be William’s son, who was also a weaver? 

Plush is a  fabric with a knap, rather like velvet.  The word “plush” is still used as an adjective to mean “comfortable with implications of luxury” according to my daughter. In the Trades and Callings chapter of her book, The Story of Deddington, Mary  Vane Turner records:

“An obstinate tradition, too, connects the plush weaving, still carried on at Shutford, with Deddington. The story goes that there were here weavers skilled in the art who left for the former place, possibly as a more convenient centre, it already being known for its plush. Judging from the pay and prices customary in the trade, which Beesley's History of Banbury (1841) quotes, its followers fared but hardly. Much plush was then exported from Banbury, (later on Shutford became headquarters of this class of weaving). It was in the style of velvet and looms were of the olden construction, the shuttles passed by hand as they still are. "A man," writes Beesley, "ought to make a piece of livery plush 42-43 yards in a month for which he would receive £3." Boys did the winding, earning on an average one shilling and tenpence halfpenny per week, and the weekly average earnings of the ordinary worker is put at eleven shillings and three farthings. They were at the looms for nine hours, six days a week.”

Almost exactly one year after William sold the cottage his son, John Bennett (also a weaver), repurchased the property from Robert Killby for the same amount that his father sold it for -  £40. William was still occupying the property at the time his son repurchased it. 

Identifying William Bennett is a problem.  There were two couples called William and Mary who baptised children after 1769.  One Willliam married Mary Olds on October 16 1766, but there is no marriage for the other William and Mary so they were probably married in another parish.  In 1777 there are banns called for William Bennet and Elisabeth Lee of Wooton and they appear in the Deddington parish register baptising children after this date..

There are three possible burials to match.  William aged 57 in 1801, aged 77 in 1823 and aged 83 in 1826.  I favour the 1801 death because his son John was occupying the cottage in 1806.

William’s son John was most likely baptised  on February 5th 1769, parents William/Mary.  He married Ann Davis on November 23rd 1789.  As previously mentioned, the Will of John Bennett, plush weaver of Deddington, was probated in 1807 but there is no sign of his burial in the parish register. It is curious that, aged 24, he was able to purchase Winmour cottage in 1793. Where did he get the money?

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1806 – 1823   Samuel Churchill and Hannah Turner

Whether he died in 1806/7 or not, John Bennett, who was living in one of the tenements at the time, sold the property to Mr Samuel Churchill, the local (wealthy) solicitor for £80 [£57K] by a Release dated April 2nd 1806:“The messuage…situate in Philcock Street, late in the occupation of William Bennett and now of John Bennett and Mary Williams which was purchased by John Bennett from Robert Killby of Deddington, Baker”

I’ve found two possible burials for the other occupier Mary Williams:

1) 1806, 81 years old, of this parish
2) 1816, 63 years old

So which Samuel Churchill bought Winmour?  Again, there are three candidates. Samuel Churchill of Clifton was not shown as owning any property in Deddington on the 1808 enclosure map.  It could be Samuel Churchill, who owned more than 20 properties and land in Deddington in 1808, or his son Samuel jnr.  Fortunately the 1806 Release makes it quite clear.  The purchaser was “Mr Samuel Churchill the younger of Deddington” 

On the 1808 Deddington Enclosure map the proprietors of Winmour are listed as the Deddington Feoffees, (pronounced Fee-Fee), a charitable institution. As there is no record of a sale, and as Samuel still owned the property in 1818, it’s probable that he leased it to them.

Samuel Churchill sold the property in 1818 to “Hannah Turner, widow, formerly of Evenley in Northants but lately of Clifton.”  She paid £100 [£73K] for:

“All that Messuage…being in Philcock Street, previously occupied by William Bennett, since  John Bennett and Mary Williams and now by Benjamin Harris, William Wilkins and Ann Cleaver.”

Given that in 1823, when the Hannah Turner sold the property on, the occupier is listed as “The Overseer of he Poor of Deddington and their undertenants” it seems probably that the Feoffees had the use of the cottage from around 1808 until 1823. All the occupants mentioned between 1806 and 1823 appear to be elderly, giving weight to the suggestion that this cottage was being used for charitable purposes.

  • Benjamin Harris was buried in 1821 aged 66
  • Ann Cleaver is possibly Ann Brooker of Wallingford who married John Cleaver in 1774, or, alternatively, Ann Cleaver born in 1734 in Clifton.  Whichever Ann it was, she was most likely buried in 1819 aged 82.
  • William Wilkins was possibly baptised in 1737, son of Thomas and Ann

  I have found no information about Hannah Turner.

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1823 - 1840  Hopcrafts and Roses

In October 1823 an Indenture  of sale was drawn up between:
“Mrs. Hannah Turner of Evenly in the County of Northampton, Widow, of the one part [and] John Hopcraft of Deddington, mason, of the other part”  Hannah Turner sold for for £100 [£83K]:
“All that Messuage…situate in Philcock St.  late in the occupation of John Bennett and Mary Williams, since of Benjamin Harris, William Wilkins and Ann Cleaver and now of the Overseers of the Poor of Deddington”

Curiously, at the time of this sale, the occupier of the cottage next door (Midhill) is named as John Hopcraft.  I don’t know if this is the same John who bought Winmour or another.  There were plenty to choose from in Deddington at that time, and nearly all of them masons.

The Hopcraft family had lived in Deddington since at least 1600.  They were principally stonemasons but the middle of the 19th century branched out into brickmaking and general building work.  Hopcraft Lane was (re)named after the family in the 20th century. The building firm of A Hopcraft had the job of removing Winmour’s  thatched roof in 1944, replacing it with concrete tiles and corrugated asbestos…no conservation area then!

I am distantly related to many of the Hopcrafts through the marriage of Mary Malings to John Hopcraft in Deddington in 1749.  Mary was the sister of my 5 x great grandfather William Malings.  

In 1830 John Hopcraft took a mortgage on the property for £100. [£83K] from William Rose of Deddington, joiner, and George Rogers of Steeple Aston, blacksmith.  The solicitors handling the agreement were Churchill and Field of Deddington. The mortgage makes it clear that John was living in the property but no other occupier was mentioned.

John sold Winmour to Michael Rose in 1837, “In Trust for William Rose”, for £20 + the mortgage.  Later evidence suggests that George Roberts, the other party to the 1830 mortgage, financed the whole of the mortgage.  Winmour had two occupiers at the date of sale in 1837,  John Hopcraft and William Banes.

William Banes/Baines probably appears on the 1841 census: William Bains aged 35, Cordwainer (shoemaker) living elsewhere in Philcock Street with his wife Ann E Bains, children: James 7, Edwin 2 and  Mary 1 month. The family continued to live in Philcock Street beyond 1861.
The Indenture identified Michael Rose as a Yeoman from North Aston.  He was later appointed Trustee in the Will of William Rose but I haven’t discovered what their connection was.

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1840 – 1877  Henry Dean

In 1840, being that William Rose (the owner) and George Rogers (the  mortgagee] were both dead, Henry Dean, farmer of Deddington, acquired the cottage at auction for £102 [£79K] from the trustees of both parties.  Co-incidently this is exactly the amount that was outstanding on the mortgage!  The property was occupied by Thomas French and Joseph Kilby at the time of the transfer.  BUT there is some further complication, yet to be explained.

The 1840 Release conveyed Winmour:

“TO HAVE AND TO HOLD To the said Henry Dean for the term of his natural life To the use of the said Henry Churchill during the life of the said Henry Dean In Trust for him.  And the said Henry Dean does hereby declare that his widow shall not be entitled to dower out of the said hereditaments”

Henry Dean was baptised January 4th 1818, son of William (a farmer) and Elizabeth.  Given the date of his birth and the date of his purchase of Winmour it’s a reasonable assumption that he had a legacy that he received “In Trust” when he reached the age of 21 and that Henry Churchill, a grocer in Deddington, was the Trustee..

The 1840 Indenture and the 1841 census both record that the two Winmour tenements were occupied by Thomas French and Joseph Kilby.

Thomas French was the Sexton, aged 66, living with his wife and three adult children, two sons and a daughter.  In addition there is a visitor, Sarah Cox, aged 6.  Young visitors are usually grandchildren of one sort or another even if not specifically identified as such.

Joseph Kilby was a sawyer, aged 27, living with his wife M A (Mary Ann?) aged 23.

1851 Census: Mary Hopcraft and Francis Knibbs had moved into the two tenements.  This was the start of a Hopcraft family occupation that was to last until 1926.  We can see:

Mary Hopcraft, widow, aged 40, born in Adthorpe in Northamptonshire occupied one tenement with  her two sons George, aged 18, and Thomas 17.  Both were mason’s labourers.

Francis Knibbs, a road labourer aged 35, lived in the other tenement with his wife Mary Ann and two young children.  All were born in Deddington.

Mary was almost certainly the widow of John Hopcraft who was born in 1807.  The Parish Register has a marriage on October 6th 1831 between John Hopcraft jnr. and Mary Caple, “both of this parish”, witnesses:  John Hopcraft and Mary Chyme.

On July 4th of that same year, John Hopcraft, widower, married Elizabeth Garrett.  Was he the John that owned the property between 1823 and 1837 and the father of John jnr.?

Mary’s husband John Hopcraft jnr. was buried December 4th 1847 aged 40.

1861 Census:  John French lived in one tenement along with his wife Mary.  John Payne and family lived in the other.

John French was aged 65, a road surveyor.  He had married the widowed Mary Hopcraft who had been living in the property since before 1851. John was buried November 20th 1868 aged 62 according to the Parish Register.  It’s not clear whether it was the Parish Register or the 1861 census which gave his age incorrectly.

The occupier of the other tenement, John Payne, was an agricultural labourer aged 58,  living with his wife and Alfred his son, aged 12, also an agricultural labourer

1871 Census:  George Hopcraft has moved into the tenement previously occupied by his mother Mary and her second husband John French.  John Payne, who occupied the other tenement in 1861, was still there but now widowed and subletting to Richard Slott and family.

George was Mary Hopcraft’s son and had lived with his mother in Winmour in 1851.  Mary had continued to occupy the property after she married John French whereas George and his brother moved out. Presumably George moved back in after John’s death in 1868.  I have been unable to find Mary (Hopcraft) French’s death.

George, aged 33, was a labourer in the axle factory, a major employer in Deddington in the middle of the 19th Century.  He lived with his wife Jane whose occupation was given as “needlewoman” though where she got the time is an interesting question given that they had 6 children aged 1 to 11 years. 

John Payne, who lived in the second tenement in 1861, was now widowed and living on his own.  He was subletting to Richard Slott, a cabinet maker from Winbrook in Oxford, married to Catherine.  They had no children. A  visitor, Elizabeth Slott, unmarried,  aged 23, was probably Richard’s sister or other close relative.  Like Richard, she was born in Winbrook.

Henry Dean owned the property until 1877, and continued to let it throughout.  Somewhere along the way he must have picked up the freehold as the 1840 transfer only gave it to him "In Trust" for his lifetime. Henry continued in his father’s footsteps and farmed in Deddington throughout his working life.

The 1841 census records him, aged 22, lodging in New Street on his own, working as a (farm) Bailiff.  In 1851 he was living in the Market Place farming 180 acres employing 8 labourers.  By this time he had married Sarah and they had two children, Henry aged 8 and Frederick 6.

The family was still in the Market Place in 1861 but by 1871 they had moved to Earl’s Farm House.  Henry was now farming 220 acres employing 7 men and 3 boys, living close by my relative Robert Malings who was on Castle/Great House farm.

Sarah died in November 1877, aged 69.  On the 1881 census Henry, a widower aged 63, was living in the High Street with his grandson Ernest, farming of 14 acres.

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1877 – 1926  The Mullis family

In 1877 Henry Dean took a Mortgage on the property from Henry Mullis, a saddler in Deddington.  Perhaps this came at the point when he was giving up most of his farming interests. 

There is no documentation for this transaction so we must rely on a later,1926, Abstract of Title to provide details.  Henry Mullis apparently advanced the sum of £500 to Henry Dean although I believe this to be a typographical error in the 1926 abstract and the actual figure is probably £50.00. As security Henry Dean conveyed to Henry Mullis:

“All that Messuage etc. being situate in Philcock Street in the several occupations of John Bennett etc. and now or late in the occupation of Thomas French and Joseph Kilby. 
A Messuage now or late in the occupation of Thomas French being next on the South side.
A Messuage now or late in the occupation of John Malins being next on the North side.”

[The details of these occupants look to have been copied directly from the 1840 conveyance and not updated.]

The messuage was conveyed TO THE USE of Henry Mullis, his heirs etc. subject to a proviso for redemption of the Mortgage and Interest by repayment on the 8th of August 1877.

After August 8th 1877 Henry Mullis was given the power demand repayment of the principal of £500 [or £50.00?] and Interest thereof (at £5 %)  by giving three months notice,  If Henry Dean failed to repay then Henry Mullis could resell the property to recoup the principal and any interest owing, plus expenses of sale.  Any surplus would be returned to Henry Dean.

Was this mortgage a way of overcoming the fact that Henry Dean only had a lifetime interest in the property?

Henry Mullis, the mortgagor and eventual owner, was born about 1829 in Banbury and was a saddler/harness maker in Deddington for much of his later life.  He and his wife Mary Ann appear on the 1871, 91 and 1901 census living in the Market Place, Deddington,  I have not yet found them in 1881.  In 1891 and 1901 their niece Clara Emma Mullis, born  about 1869 in Leytonstone, Essex, is living with them.

1877:  An Abstract of Title drawn up in 1926 recites that the two tenants were George Hopcraft and Richard Slott.

1881 Census: George Hopcraft and John Matthews were the two tenants.

George, now a general labourer, lived with his wife and 5 children in one tenement.  The two older ones were employed; Thomas, aged 19, an agricultural labourer and Emily, 13, a domestic servant.

John Matthews, a brickmaker aged 37, lived in the other tenement with his wife and three young children.  The family obviously moved around.  John and his wife were both born in Deddington but his oldest child, aged 8, was born in Bloxham and the two younger ones, aged 5 and 2, were born in Milton Hoyland in Yorkshire. 

1891 Census: George Hopcraft and John H Gregory

George was now a builders labourer.  His wife Jane was a laundress and their three sons who were still living with them were also in employment.  Thomas, aged 30, was also a builders labourer, John, 18, was  an agricultural labourer as was Frederick aged 12.  Perhaps George and Thomas worked for one of their Hopcraft builder relatives.

John H Gregory, a rural postman, aged 23, his wife Hannah and two young children lived in the other tenement.

The 1891 census showed, for the first time, the number of rooms in each house..  Both the Hopcraft’s and the Gregory’s had three rooms each. Given that in 1871 and 81 George Hopcraft’s family consisted of 7 or 8 people, and there were still 5 living there in 1891, it must have been very cosy in his part of Winmour Cottage.

1895 Kelly’s Directory: George Hopcraft, grocer, in Philcott Street.

The 1901 census records an empty house and the Hopcrafts. 

By this time only one son, Thomas (a widower), is at home with his parents.  Both he and his father (aged 68) are general labourers.  

The census also records that the house has 5 or more rooms suggesting that the two 3-roomed tenements in the 1891 census have now been turned into one house.  This seems a bit late for the Hopcrafts given that there are only three of them in residence.  If it is a single house why does the Census enumerator record an empty house between George Hopcraft and Midhill, the next house north?  Maybe the front door of the second tenement had not been removed but there is internal access between the tenements?  Or, possibly, that there has always been a shared facility similar to Robert Franklin’s shared kitchen and cellar arrangement outlined in the introduction to this article.  Another possibility is that the Hopcrafts were  living in one tenement and using the other as their grocer’s shop.

George Hopcraft died in 1902 aged 69 years but his widow Jane continued living in Winmour. 

In 1905, Henry Mullis conveyed the property to his niece Clara Emma Mullis, spinster, for £100. [£42K]  Past censuses show that she had been living with Henry and his wife since before 1891. 

Henry died on 11th May 1907 aged 78; his effects were valued at £2116 [£870K]  for probate.  His wife Mary Ann died in 1910 aged 83.  On the 1911 census, Clara was still living in the Market Place,  having “Private Means”.  She has a visitor staying: Nellie Hawell Austin, aged 16, a dressmaker born in Deddington.

1911 Census: Jane Hopcraft is still the occupier.

Jane's occupation is given as a “small grocer”, presumably operating out of Winmour Cottage.   Kelly’s 1911 directory gives confirmation by listing her as “Hopcraft Jane (Mrs.), grocer, Philcot street”. Jane’s unmarried daughter Elizabeth, aged 47, a domestic cook, was living with her.  The house now had 6 rooms according to the census.

1916: Jane Hopcraft died.  By 1926 the tenant is William Hopcraft.  Presumably he took over at Jane’s death.

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1926 – 1994  Hirons, Hayward, Moreby and Goodison

Clara Mullis continued to rent the property to the Hopcrafts after she became owner but eventually she sold it, in 1926, to Frank Seymour Hirons.  A Conveyance from Clara Mullis to Frank Seymour Hirons, labourer of Deddington, shows that she sold Winmour for £67. [£13K]

The tenant, William Hopcraft, was given a letter to quit when Frank Hirons bought the property, so ending more than 75 years of continous Hopcraft occupation of Winmour Cottage.

Frank Seymour Hirons was born  on July 31st 1885 in the Chipping Norton registration district.The 1891 census shows him living with his parents Thomas And Eliza and his sister Helen Caroline in Spelsbury, Oxon.  His place of birth is also given as Spelsbury. 

 In 1901 the family is living in New Street Deddington.  Seymour, as he now appears, was born in Dytchley.  In 1911 he was still living at home with his parents Thomas and Eliza, in the High Street, Deddington.  I can find no evidence of any marriage or children until 1953 when he married Winifred Agnes Wells (born Sept. 5th 1887).  Both Frank and Winifred died in 1969.

Winifred Wells was a spinster, born in Deddington also to parents named Thomas and Eliza.  Her father had a Drapers shop in New Street in 1891, and in the Market Place in 1901. 

It's possible Frank lived with his sister Helen in Winmour Cottage.  She died, unmarried, in 1950.  Perhaps that was the motivation for him to get married in 1953 aged 68.

I’ve found two Frank S Hirons who served in WW1.  The most likely is Frank S Hirons who was a Corporal in the Royal Warwickshire Regiment, number 1463.  The alternative Frank served in the Westmoreland and Cumberland Yeomanry.

The Deeds contain several documents relating to Winmour during Frank Hirons occupation:

1. A Fire Insurance policy from the Guardian Assurance Company, for £75 in 1926 at 3 shillings and nine pence per annum, increased in 1929 to a sum insured of £100 at 5 shillings per annum.  The property was described as “built of stone with a thatched roof”
2. A bill for George Hancox in 1938 for £16 15 shillings [£3K] for connecting the cottage to mains water
3. A bill from A Hopcraft in 1944 for £131 13 shillings and 2 pence [£13K]  for replacing the thatched roof with slate
4. A bill from George Hancox in 1945 for £8 seventeen shillings and 6 pence [£900] for  removing the stone floor in the kitchen and replacing with concrete and red tiles.
5. 1948/9, correspondence with his solicitor regarding the proposed sale of a small piece of garden to the adjoining owner, Mr. Cooper.  It looks like this did not happen until 1994

In 1961, after 35 years occupation, Frank Hirons sold the property to Walter George Hayward of Deddington.  Frank continued to live in Deddington, moving to the High Street.

In 1963 Mr Hayward sold the property on to William Thomas Moreby of Goffs Farm, Adderbury. There is no conveyance with the Deeds, presumably this went to the Land Registry as proof of ownership when the Cottage was registered at some later date. 

In 1988, along with most other old buildings in the area, Winmour Cottage was listed as a building of special architectural or historical interest by the Department of the Environment.

No further documents of conveyance are available, but a Schedule of Deeds produced by solicitors Hancocks of Banbury suggests that Mr. Moreby sold the property in 1988.

We do know that by 1994 the cottage was owned by Steven and Anne Goodison who sold a small piece of land to their neighbour Lynette Ruby Green who owned Calder Cottage next door.  This was probably the same piece that Mr Cooper was looking to buy from Frank Hirons back in 1948.

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