GILL/BATES, Tring/Marsworth > Yorkshire, 1875

February 2002

Lynda Fase (lynda @t comments on the posting EDWARDS, St Albans, mid-19th century says:  I also have an example of an agricultural labourer uprooting his family and going north. After what I assume to be generations of 'ag labbing' - and straw plaiting among the women and children - James Bates of Marsworth (in Buckinghamshire but close to Tring) and his wife Fanny nee Gill (born and brought up in Tring) took their growing family up to Rotherham in Yorkshire. It was around 1875, when I understand both agriculture and straw-plaiting were at a low ebb. I have also wondered how they knew about the possibilities up there - whether there were adverts etc. However, James worked as a railway plate layer in  Rotherham so I guess he may have heard news from local railway workers, or even worked on the railway in the Tring area before moving so far. Ironically, James and Fanny's granddaughter was forced to migrate in the opposite direction in 1930, when her gardener husband could find no work in the depressed north. They settled in Barnet, Herts.

I find your posting very interesting, and for the sake of other visitors to this site I am posting details of the 1881 census entry for the family:

Dwelling: Low Jordan     Census Place: Kimberworth, Yorkshire




Plate Layer

Marsworth, Bucks





Tring, Herts

William BATES




Marsworth, Bucks





Marsworth, Bucks

Joseph BATES




Marsworth, Bucks





Kimberworth, Yorks





Kimberworth, Yorks

Robert BATES




Kimberworth, Yorks

This is an excellent example in that the births of the children allow the move to be dated to within a year of 1874 and many of the people who moved were unmarried men. The date may well be significant as in 1874 there was a major agricultural strike, mainly in East Anglia which ended with many of the men being dismissed. I am not sure if/where there may have been pockets of strikers in Bucks or Herts in 1874 - but it is possible that this was the reason why your James moved to Yorkshire. Definitely the wages were better in the North of England as the industrial revolution had caused many of the country folk to move into the mill towns and there was a comparative shortage of agricultural workers in the areas affected.

I have little knowledge of the 1874 strike - but have collected information on the very much smaller strike, possibly involving less that 100 men, in Sandridge in 1873. I will be posting details later this month.

There are web pages on this site relating to the movement of railway workers to and from the village of Aldbury - which is close to both Marsworth and Tring - see Occupations: Railways

Lynda Fase writes:  Thanks again for your comments. I will certainly look into that strike. It would be interesting if there were such a specific reason for the move. But even if they didn't strike in that area, I suppose that the general conditions that caused the strike would also have been making life difficult for the Bates family. You might be interested to know that the granddaughter who moved back down to Barnet (Ada Bates, born 1903, daughter of Robert born 1879) had married Leslie Fase, who was the son of Edith Scott and grandson of William Scott of Osterhills. They were two families who would not have expected to marry into each other the last time they were in Hertfordshire! Leslie and Ada were my grandparents, and I don't think Leslie (not having been brought up by his mother) had any knowledge whatsoever of the Scott family or of previous connections with St Albans. [SCOTT, Oster Hills, St Albans, late 19th century]

February 2003

Lynda Fase (lynda @t writes: I would like to thank you for displaying my comments/query about the Bates of Marsworth as it led to my being contacted by a descendant of Maria, James Bates' sister - and we were able to pool information to give a much more definite idea of who their forbears were. 

January 2005

Lynda Fase (lynda @t provides the following update: Just wanted to tell you that through your site I have located the descendant of  another sibling of James Bates. His only surviving brother Joseph (b.1853) apparently went to Australia as an indentured servant in 1873 - the same time as James left the area. Joseph's 2X great grandaughter contacted me from Brisbane.


YOUNG, Tring>Lincs>Yorkshire, 1870's

Alan Young (asgyoung @t from Toronto, Canada says: Your reply to Lynda Fase reminded me of my great-great uncle's northerly migration which occurred at almost exactly the same time as that of the Bates family. Perhaps the same economic factors were at play. Shadrach Young (born 1849 in Tring) married Rebecca Wright in Tring in 1871.  Their first child, Walter Young, was born in 1871/72 in Tring.  The family then moved away. Daughters Emily and Alice were born in 1872/73 and 1874/75 respectively in Lincs, and the rest of the children were born in Ripon, Yorks.

In 1881, Shadrach was a coachman living in the Lodge, Studley Royal, Lindrick, Yorks, with his wife and four of their six children. The other two children were back in Tring staying with their grandparents. Daughter Alice (6) was staying with her maternal grandparents, Thomas Wright & Elizabeth Astell, while daughter Edith (4) was staying with her paternal grandparents, David Young & Elizabeth Tofield.

In 1891, Shadrach was a groom and coachman still at Studley Royal. This time, all the children, eight of them now, were living with the parents (except for Alice, whose fate or whereabouts are unknown). I don't have anything further on this family; it will be interesting to see what the 1901 Census reveals.

Shadrach is the brother of James Young, son of David & Elizabeth Young of Shire Lane, Tring, - mentioned in YOUNG/EDWARDS, Tring, mid 19th century

There is possibly another factor to be considered in the move of Shardach Young from Tring, because of his occupation - as he is listed as a domestic coachman in the 1881 census. If you haven't done so, it could be worth checking the microfilm of the 1871 census for Tring. In the 1870 Post Office Directory Tring Park (the big house in Tring) was occupied by the Rev. James Williams and it may well be that Shadrach Young was employed in the stables - perhaps as a coachman. The Rev. Williams only rented the house and the whole estate was sold by auction on 7 May 1872 to Baron Lionel Nathan de Rothschild, who took up occupation [A History of Tring, by Sheila Richards, 1974]. I don't know what happen to the Rev. Williams - but perhaps he moved to Lincolnshire and took his coachman with him!

Alan Young (asgyoung @t responded: That is an interesting hypothesis regarding Shadrach.  He wasn't with his parents in 1871 and although I think I copied out all of the Youngs in Tring from the microfilm of the 1871 Census, it's possible I  missed a single Young at Tring Park.  Do you know if there any connection between the Rev. Williams and Joseph G. Williams, the proprietor of Pendley ManorShadrach's parents lived at Pendley Beeches Lodge (1881 Census) where his father was a gamekeeper, presumably employed by J.G. (as Dorian Williams called his great-uncle in "Pendley and a Pack of Hounds").

I am afraid I know nothing significant about the Rev. James Williams. Perhaps someone else can comment.

April 2002

Apologies - I was wrong!!! The Rev. Williams just moved a couple of miles - see Pendley

If you can add to the information given above tell me.


Page updated January 2005