This page is for people who are trying to trace family or friends who have lived in Widdington.  
If you can help out at all,  please email me and i will put you in touch with the person who is looking.

You to can contribute to the People's Archives pages An Archive of peoples memories.

Life in the Village as you remember it. You can write about any aspect of village life as little or as much as you feel.  

I would like to thank Tessa Canning, Fred Fairson  and David Howells for their contributions 

For his wounderful contribution to our online Archive 



 Looking for an Ancestor of Widdington

My ancestral interest in Widdington is with the Dixon & Wisbey families.

My Grandfather was Philip Dixon (1835-1914) b. Wddington the son of Joseph Dixon (1812-1870), a Thatcher b. Widdington.
Joseph in turn was the son of Edward/Edmund Dixon (1769-1837) a Thatcher, b. Widdington and one of 8 illegitimate children born to Susannah Dixon (1738-1769) b. Widdington.
She was orphaned in her teens and probably went into service. This appears to have become co-habitation as from 1764 she baptized 8 illegitimate children at Widdington St. Mary’s.  The Vicar (Rev Birch) noted that the children were ‘base-born’ but did not name the father.  However, he did make the entries in the Register more prominent than other entries.(!!) Susanna made no claims on the parish for support and no local Bastardy Bonds were taken out to force the putative father to support them, so it is assumed that Susanna and her children were fully supported and probably housed by their father.  The boys appear to have been apprenticed to worthy trades and all the surviving children made good marriages, pointing to the fact that their condition in life appeared to have been no drawback to their general acceptance,  in their community.  Their father remains unknown.
If anyone has any further information on Susannah Dixon of the father of her childen I shall be very happy to hear from them.
May the Widdington web-site go from strength to strength.
Kind regards,

Dear Gary,
Many thanks for getting back to me so promptly and for the links to the PR transcriptions.
Yes, please do use the Clausen M.I. photos and my Dixon querie letter - it just might shake some extra data out of the woodwork, which would be very exciting.
My great grandfather Philip Dixon (1835-1914) moved from Widdington to work at Woodhall, Arkesden, (owned by the Birch-Wolfe's at the time) and eventually became Head Gardener there. This move may have come about as I believe there was a link between the families of Vicar Birch of Widdington and the Birch-Wolfe's of Woodhall, and maybe the Vicar had recommended him to them. Phillip married in 1859 an Arkesden girl, Elizabeth Sell, and they produced 11 children, most of which moved away to London in adulthood.
Kind Regards,  Diana

The Wright's of Widdington.


A cousin in England found your website about Widdington and sent it to me.  My mother was Monica Louisa Jessie Wright and her father's family  is all from Widdington.

I looked at the photographs.  Widdington Folk #1, the photo of the trip to the Seaside 1920's has my g.grandmother in it.  Isobel Dellow Wright, second row, fifth from the left.

Folk#2, the Fleur de Lys is the pub that Uncle John Wright ran from 1917 until his death in 1920 when his widow, Nellie Grace Wright took it over and ran it for many years having remarried to Bert Chesham. 

Folk #3, James and Mary Ann Wright are my g.g.grandparents.  I was thrilled to find them in the Jubilee photographs.

I have lots of information on my Wright family that I would love to share and of course I am eager to learn more about Widdington and about my Wright family.     

I'm sure I must have cousins in Widdington still.  Could we communicate?

Here are some details of my Wright family:

1901 Census:  (my grandfather was Harold Wright below)
Region District:  Saffron Walden
Sub-District, Newport
Village of Widdington
Frederick Wright, Widdington, Ecclesiastical Parish, Widdington St. Mary
Born about 1861,
Spouse Isabel born Clavering (all others born Widdington)
Charlie Wright age 7
Emily Wright age 20 Assistant School Teacher
Fred Wright age 12
Frederick Weright age 40 Bricklayer (worker)
George Wright age 9
Gertrude Wright age 4
Gladys Wright age 1
Harold Wright age 2
Isabel Wright age 40
James Wright age 87 Grandfather Widowed Retired boot, shoemaker
John Wright age 14 Bricklayer, Labourer (Worker)

Census of 1881:  Widdington, Essex, England
Source:  FHL Film 1341438  PRO Ref RG11  Piece 1816 Folio 132
Page 4
Frederick W. Wright Married Age 20 Born Widdington, Essex, England
Re: Head
Occ:  Briclayer
Isabel WRIGHT married, age 20, Born Clavering, Essex, England
Rel:  Wife
Emily WRIGHT Age 8 Mos. Born Widdington, Essex, England
Rel:  Daughter
Dwelling:       Woodend Cottage

Hope to hear from you,


Cheryl C. Spaulding

If you have any information on the Wright Family please email Cheryl or GaryD


The Wright's of Widdington.

Hi Gary

What a fantastic website! I have seen for the first time photos of where my ancestors lived and even a photo of my Gt Gt Gt Grandfather  James Wright and a reference to his Grandfather who was "Shepherd Wright" (this was a completely new generation!)
I have managed to track my direct line back to James Wright of Widdington.  He was born in Feb 1815 in the village and was a shoemaker, as was his son William who carried on the profession in Rickling, Essex. I think James’ parents were James and Hannah, also from Widdington; although I still trying to verify this. James married Mary Ann Salmon in Berden, Essex in Nov 1834 with their first 2 children were born in Stocking Pelham but Emily, Eliza and Mahala all being born in Widdington. James died in Widdington in March 1906. I have been sent a photo of a gravestone from Widdington church which says “In memory of James Wright – 1815 – 1907” which doesn’t seem to tie up with the death cert that I have dated 1906! I am hoping to take a trip to Widdington to have a look round the church and village.
Have you been contacted by anyone elso reseaching the "Wrights of WIddington" as there are numerous mentions of them in census returns for Widdington and also some lovely pictures of their residences in Sir Claud Hollis Family Records on your site.
Keep up the great work.
Kind regards

If you have any information on the Wright Family please email


I am interested to know if you can help me find out
why my part of the Chipperfields family left Widdington
Hi Gary,

Sorry to bother you but I am doing some family history research, looking at my grandmother Sarah Chipperfield's ancestors whose roots appear to be in Widdington.

I knew nothing about the village and its history except for what I have read in your 'Widdington Chronicles', where I spotted some mentions of other Chipperfields who seem still be connected to the village. From reading your website I can clearly see you are an enthusiast for the village so I was hoping I can tap into your knowledge.

Now I don't want to involve you in a long and drawn out investigation into my family history, but I am interested to know if you can help me find out why my Chipperfields left Widdington (I'm guessing some time in between 1875 and 1880) and ended up in the much less desirable area of Hackney! All of my elderly relatives on that side have now passed away so I'm hoping to fill in some gaps in my knowledge through other means.

For information, Sarah Chipperfield was born in 1893 in Hackney to Charles Chipperfield who was born in Widdington in 1863.

In 1901 the family were living in Hackney and Charles was a Dust Carman. The earliest record of him I can find is from the 1871 census where he registered as a scholar and living in Widdington.

In that year Charles is one of four children (the others were Sarah, 19 - a servant; William, 16 - a farm labourer; and Emily, 4) of James and Martha Chipperfield living at number 21 (street name unknown although number 24 is marked as Park Cottage). James is 41 and also a farm labourer.

Next door at number 20 there is another Chipperfield family headed by Joseph Chipperfield, 67 - a farm labourer, and his wife Mary, 64. They have living with them three older children (presumably siblings of Charles next door) who are Joseph, 31 - a farm labourer; Emma, 25 - an unemployed servant; and George, 21 - a carpenter.

By the way I read in your Chronicles that the Chipperfields in Widdington were/are still carpenters - is it safe to assuume they are descended from George?

So I was wondering if you know any Chipperfields still in the area who may be able to help me piece together the story of why, after generations of living in Widdington, my great grandfather Charles decided not to follow the family tradition of farm labouring and moved to Hackney. Any other information about life in the village for farm workers during the 19th Century would also be very helpful. And one last thing - which road is Park Cottage in - and are the neighbouring houses 20 and 21 still standing?

I'd be very grateful for any assistance you can give, either through your own knowledge or via your village website.

Many thanks and kind regards,

John Bridges
Please email me and i will pass on any information




How can i find out if Lily Parish born in Widdington, 

Dec 1887 called herslef Sarah Parish when she married in 1907? 



Recently I have been looking into family history details on my mums side using varied sources on the internet and recently came upon the information you had detailed on the Widdington site.

I'm not sure how long the details have been there but i was hoping in some way you may be able to help me further. 

My mum's mum (my great-grandmother) was married to James Curtis in OND 1907 in Bishops Stortford and her maiden name we believe was Sarah Parish. We know for sure she died aged 50 (in Bishops Stortford)  in 1940 and she had a sister Lily Parish (aged 7 in 1901) who was a witness at Sarah Parish's wedding in 1907. I cannot be sure (and my mum does not know definitely) but I believe that this is the same 'Parrish' (for somereason spelt 'Parrett' on the census) family from Widdington in 1891 at Swains Hall Farm. Is it possible to know if Sarah (69) widowed was sister  (related) to Jacob (50)? I believe that Jacob/Emma and children moved onto Clavering  (Pelham Gates) for the 1901 census. My problem is that in 1891 the daughter Sarah is aged (10) and there is a Lily who is more like the correct age (3) to be my mums grandmother Sarah. 

 It seems I had never tried the spelling 'Parrish' (I thought I had but thanks to your entries I tried again) and 'discovered' Jacob, Emma and children before that in the 1881 census for the first time.... 

My question though is in that I am trying hard to make the Lily Parish aged 3 in 1891 at Swains Hall Farm be the one and same Sarah Parish aged 17 and marrying James Curtisin 1907. I now for sure that a Sarah and her sister  (Elizabeth Parish aged 23 in 1916) both had a father William Parish (Jacob William Parish born 1842 Saffron Walden). How can i find out if Lily Parish born in widdington Dec 1887 called herslef Sarah Parish when she married in 1907?


Steve Matthews



Benjamin Scott and Woodley / Woodloy of Widdington 1665-1670


Hi, Gary


Thanks so much for your website! It is a joy to read. I visited Widdington from Oakland CA last week because of its importance in my family history. My ancestor, Benjamin Scott, was a yeoman who left Widdington in the 1670s for the province of West New Jersey. He was a Quaker and had been previously fined for not attending church and for attending Quaker meetings. His wife, Margaret, seems to have been a Woodley and possibly related to Richard Woodloy/Woodley whose will is dated 1665. 

Gary, have you gotten any inquiries from other people who are related to the Scotts or Woodleys? I would like to find out a couple of things in particular:

1. How long the Scotts had lived in the Widdington area

2. Why Benjamin Scott was appointed a commissioner for the province of West New Jersey (the commissioners were charged with surveying land, buying it from the Lenape people who occupied it and subdividing it into plots that settlers could buy).

He was appointed by William Penn, and it's not clear to me why
he would have known William Penn.






Joseph & Catherine  Pitty



I am in Australia and descended from Joseph Pitty who was born in Widdington in about1798 and died in Newport Essex in1854, his wife Catherine died in Newport in 1824, does anyone have any info on the Pitty family?


Royleen Wolski 




Mr Brendon Scheib 

The Widdington families I am descended from: 




Hello Gary,
I have been having a look at your web site, which is great as it
 is giving me some insights into the village of some of my ancestors.
I live in New Zealand and am researching the history of my family, my mothers mother was a Dellow, and her family came originally from Widdington.
However what really caught my eye was your article on the murder of James Mumford. Because we also have PALLETT ancestors.
 I now want to find out exactly what relationship I am to John Pallett.
 He is either the twin brother of my ancestor 
(Ann Pallett born 8 Aug 1714) or he could be her nephew.
I Googled "bbbbbbbbbbbb" and found some other articles on
 the murder, but nowhere could I find anything on his 
age or parentage. If he is the twin brother of my Ann he would be about 39, but if he is the nephew he would be about 21. 
(He was 21 so the nephew.  GaryD)
On another matter - would you know if the headstones 
in the local churchyard have been transcribed? 
It would be interesting to see if any headstones survive from 
my ancestors. Also this could possibly help with another matter, 
I am descended from a John Dellow who was born in 1779 or 1780, 
but the Widdington church christening records show 
that two John Dellow's were born one in 79 and the other
 in 80 to different families, I cant tell yet which is mine, so need more information.
I have gone on long enough about the family names, it is unfair 
to bombard you with details that are of no interest to you.
 This message is really to make contact and thank you for your web site.
Brendon Scheib
Wellington, New Zealand.
Widdington families I am descended from:

Mr Fred Fairson 


so pleased to find this site.

I was born in Widdington in 1942 in the

other village pub "William The Conqueror" 
please read more of Freds memories in the

Widdington Memory Archives 


Mr David Anthony Howells 

 My name is David Anthony Howells. I was born originally with the name Anthony Auer in Colchester. My mother was a 'local' at Widdington in the late 1940`s,

please read more of David's memories in the Widdington Memory Archives 


James LUCKINGS (1828-1906)

Name:  James LUCKINGS  

Sex:  Male  

Father:  William LUCKINGS (1786-1853)  

Mother:  Sarah BALE (1789-1878) 

Individual Events and Attributes

Occupation   Agricultural Labourer  

Birth  1828  Colchester, Essex  

Census (1)  1841 (age 13)  Newport, Essex  

Census (2)  1851 (age 23)  Newport, Essex  

Census (3)  1861 (age 32-33)  Newport, Essex  

Census (4)  1871 (age 42-43)  Widdington, Essex  

Census (5)  1881 (age 52-53)  Widdington, Essex  

Census (6)  1891 (age 67 (!))  Widdington, Essex  

Census (7)  1901 (age 72)  Newport, Essex  

Death  Dec 1906 (age 77-78)  Saffron Waldon, Essex  


Additional Information

Census (1)  as LUCKING  

Census (2)  Bury Water  

Census (3)  birth c1831  

Census (4)  b1835  

Census (5)  1 South Green Cottage, 

lodger (William + Mary Clark) Widower b 1831 London  

Census (6)  Swain Hall Farm 

with Sarah Parrish, Widowed, Jacob Parrish's family and Arthur, nephew aged 20  

Census (7)  Church Street 

Widower. Horsekeeper on farm


Rev. Richard Birch
Birth: 1732 London
Married: Mary Wolfe about 1758 ‎(Age 26)‎   
Residence: Rector of Doddinghurst, Essex, and of Shellow Bowells, Essex;
one of the oldest magistrates in the  County of Essex
Death: 10 May 1813 ‎(Age 81)‎ Widdington Essex