Hertfordshire Genealogy




Railway Employees associated with Aldbury in 1881




The first searchable census because available on CD in 2000 and when this site was created in 2001 this page was originally prepared to show one way in which the CD could be processed.

The 1881 census returns for the village of Aldbury are very revealing about the effects of the Railway's recruitment policy on employment and population movement. A search shows that the following people were employed by the railway as plate layers or general labourers in 1881. All lived in or close to the village of Aldbury, and except where stated all were born in Aldbury. Only one was not born locally.

Joseph BILBEY (28, Cheddington, Bucks, Labourer)

William BURCH (60, Plate Layer)

James DELL (38, Plate Layers Labourer)

Reuben DELL (40, Plate Layer)

Thomas HALSEY (32, Pitstone, Bucks, Plate Layer)

William HALSEY (54, Labourer)

Joseph LOVETT (35, Plate Layer)

Joseph MARKS (37, Foreman Plate Layer)

Thomas MARKS (32, Plate Layers Labourer)

Peter MESSIDER (20, Plate Layer)

Charles PEARSON (61, Hobler, Yorks, Plate Layer)

Charles PEARSON (37, Plate Layer)

John SMITH (22, Plate Layer)

James THORN (59, Plate Layer)

William WATTS (32, Plate Layer)

Charles WELLING (39, Plate Layer)

There were four other employees living in the village, only one of whom was local.

William BEER (16, Aldbury, Herts, Porter)

Jesse HOWARD (25, Barley, Herts, Porter)

John NICHOLS (50, Acton, Middx, Signalman)

Robert PREW (38, Ryhall, Lincs, Signalman)

By contrast the employees housed in the Railway cottages at Tring station had more skilled jobs. Only one of them was born in Aldbury, with another born a few miles away at Ivinghoe, Bucks.

George ALLNUTT (35, Chinnor, Oxon, Parcel Porter)

John E CARPENTER (39, Oxford, Oxon, Foreman)

Arthur CURRELL (29, Bishop Stortford, Herts, Signalman)

Joseph DELL (40, Aldbury, Herts, Goods Porter)

David DOWNS (29, Horton, Bucks, Signalman)

James DOYAL (26, Kildare, Ireland, Goods Porter)

Thomas DREWETT (42, Hove, Sussex, Checker)

William EDBURY (44, London, Station Master) - in the Station Masters House

Margaret Edbury.(edbury @t edbury.freeserve.co.uk) writes: William Edbury, Stationmaster at Tring on this list, is my husband's great grandfather via Charles, one of William's 13 children - all born between 1861 and 1878 . I wonder if the Stationmaster's house could have housed them all. We have it that, apart from 3 of those children, most were born in the Watford/Berkhamsted area. At least one of his children worked in the station ticket office. We believe that William went on to become Stationmaster at Bicester, where he died after 1887.

Thomas HOLMES (31, East Woodley, Hants, Foreman Porter)

Joseph HUMPHREY (29, Ivinghoe, Bucks, Shunter)

John JOHNSON (39, Clapton, Northants, Signalman)

Samuel KENDALL (43, Rothwell, Hants, Pumping Engine Driver)

John LEADBEATER (61, Deanshanger, Northants, Engine Driver & Gas Maker)

George LEADBEATER (32, Bradwell, Bucks, Signalman)

William TAYLOR (20, Sutton Potton, ?, Porter)

Arthur THOMPSON (27, Greenfield, Beds, Shunter (Points Man))

Edward WALKER (20, Lindslade, Bucks, Porter)

While some of the birth places, such as Bradwell and Linslade, Bucks, and Deanshanger, Northants, are close to the London to Birmingham railway line which runs through Tring Station, there is a pretty wide scatter of locations from Southern England.

There was also a movement in the other direction and the following railway workers who had left the Aldbury area have been noted:

William BIRCH (25, Plate Layer, L N W Railway) at Bushey, Herts

Thomas F COLLIER (24, Railway Waggon Builder) at Battersea, Surrey

Charles DELL (39, Plate Layer) at Bow, London

Job GURNEY (23, Clerk) at Harrow, Middx

Thomas KINGHAM (57, Plate Layer) at Harpenden, Herts

James MESSIDER (23, Signalman) at Brixworth, Northants

George T PARISH (30, Guard) at Hulme, Lancs

Mathew PARISH (29, Sergeant of Police, G E Railway) at West Ham, Essex

James W SOLLY (31, Clerk) at Bedford, Beds

Matthew SWABEY (61, Invalided Porter) at Gayton, Northhants

Mathew THORNE (30, Plate Layer) at Bow, London

Thomas WELLING (49, Plate Layer) at Bushey, Herts

It is quite clear that the railway recruited its labouring staff locally, but there was a very high level of mobility among the more skilled staff, who rarely seemed to stay in their home area.

See also Railway Staff in Aldbury in the 1851 census

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

Page updated November 2005