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16 Milford Street

An architect, a coal merchant's clerk, and a boot repairer

16 Milford Street is one of a terrace of three houses on the north side of the street, built in the 1880s.

1891 census

James Yarrow, head, 33, architect, b. Little Downham, Cambridgeshire
Mary Yarrow, wife, 30, b. Carlton Rode, Norfolk
James H Yarrow, son, 10, scholar, b. Cambridge
Mary R Yarrow, daughter, 7, scholar, b. Cambridge
Elizabeth D Yarrow, daughter, 5, scholar, b. Cambridge
Ernest A Yarrow, son, 2, b. Norwich, Norfolk
Eliza A Larn, sister, 30, b. Cambridge
Edith M Yarrow, sister, 19, dressmaker, b. Cambridge

James Yarrow’s father Matthew was a carpenter and builder from Little Downham, who had moved with his family into Cambridge by 1861. James was working as a clerk in 1871, aged 13. He may be the James Yarrow who earned a Certificate for Model Drawing at Cambridge School of Art in 1878 (Cambridge Independent Press, 23 February 1878, page 5); he was graded ‘Excellent’ for perspective, specifically orthographic projection. By 1881, aged 23 and newly married to Mary, he was working as an architect and surveyor. In later years the family moved to Ipswich and then Coventry, where James was a clerk of works in the building trade.

1901 census

Charles W Baldry [Baldrey], head, 44, coal merchant’s clerk, b. Cambridge
Alice Baldry, wife, 45, b. Cambridge
Fredk C Baldry, son, 23, coal merchant’s clerk, b. Cambridge
Ernest E Baldry, son, 20, brewer’s clerk, b. Cambridge
Percy H Baldry, son, 19, pupil teacher, b. Cambridge
Chas W Baldry, son, 14, telegraph messenger for government, b. Cambridge
Lizzie R Baldry, daughter, 12, b. Cambridge
Winifred A Baldry, daughter, 7, b. Cambridge
Cyril E Baldry, son, 2, b. Cambridge
Alfred Brown, nephew, 23, printer’s labourer, b. Cambridge

Charles William Baldrey was the illegitimate son of Sarah Ann Baldrey, a laundress, and was brought up in the household of his grandmother Ruth, also a laundress, in Brandon Place and later Norfolk Terrace.

Before moving to Milford Street, Charles and Alice and their children lived at 4 Sleaford Street (#7 in modern numbering).

1911 census

Charles William Baldrey, head, 54, coal merchant’s clerk, b. Cambridge
Alice Baldrey, wife, 55, b. Cambridge
Lizzie Ruth Baldrey, daughter, 22, confectioner’s assistant, b. Cambridge
Winifred Annie Baldrey, daughter, 17, b. Cambridge
Cyril Edgar Baldrey, son, 12, at school, b. Cambridge
Married 35 years, 11 children of which 2 died

The Baldreys’ youngest son Cyril was killed in action in France in 1918, aged 19. He is commemorated on his parents’ headstone at Mill Road Cemetery:

Cyril Edgar Baldrey

There is no entry for 16 Milford Street in the 1921 census.

1939 England and Wales register

Edward C Norris, 22 Sep 1894, married, foreman boot repairer
Elizabeth M Norris, 9 Oct 1896, married, unpaid domestic duties
Gladys B A Oliver [future married name Loker], 5 Jan 1923, single, instrument assembler

Gladys Oliver was the daughter of Elizabeth’s brother William Oliver.

Edward Norris is first recorded as living at the house in trade directories of 1922, and he was still there in 1962. He died in 1965.


UK census records (1841 to 1911), General Register Office birth, marriage and death indexes (1837 onwards), the 1939 England and Wales Register, electoral registers, trade directories, local newspapers available via, and Friends of Mill Road Cemetery.


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