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27 Ainsworth Street

Agricultural Labourer and a Railway Shunter

Number 27 is one of a terrace of four houses standing on the west side of Ainsworth Street.

1880 – 1897

John Marsh, 43,  is Head of Household from at least 1880 until 1897. There are earlier records on the electoral register of John Marsh living on Ainsworth Street, however, the houses were unnumbered in the 1870s.  It is possible that the family lived here since 1873.

The 1881 census shows that John was born 29 Nov 1837 and was baptised in Ashdon, Essex.  His wife is Sarah (nee Bradford) 53.

In 1871 John is lodging with Sarah and her five children at 15 Crispin Street (near today’s Crispin Place at the back of the Grafton Centre).  The youngest child is 1-year-old Charles Bradford, baptised as “Charles Marsh Bradford”.

In 1881 John is an unemployed agricultural labourer.  Charles is 11 and now “Charles Marsh.”  There is another son, 7 year old John Griffin, named after his paternal Grandfather.

Charles is registered at East Road Boys School between August 1881 and July 1882.

John is registered at East Road Boys School between February 1880 and March 1887.

In 1891 the Marsh family has a visitor.  24-year-old Mary Smith, an assistant in a laundry.

The Electoral Register for 1890 – 1891 shows a Charles Mansfield also living at 27 Ainsworth Street. The Marshes are definitely resident until 1897, so perhaps he’s a lodger?

John and Sarah are living in Garden Cottages, Willow Walk by 1901 where John is a Grocer’s Horekeeper.  Sadly, Sarah is admitted to a lunatic asylum in Essex on the 19th October 1901 where she dies, aged 80, on 19th March 1909.  John died in Linton in 1917, aged 82.

1898 – 1916

By 1898 the Darnell family have moved in to 27 Ainsworth Street.

Robert is 42 and is a railway shunter on the Great Eastern Railway originally from Trumpington, the son of a coprolite digger.  He is married to Rose, who had the wonderful maiden name of Pink.

In 1901 there are seven children. Robert William, 15, is a page boy, then there is Dorothy Ida, 10, Harold, 7, Leonard Alfred, 6, Elsie, 3, Rose, 2, and 8 month old Phyllis.

By 1911 Dorothy is the oldest child at home and she’s a dressmaker. Harold is a shop assistant, Leonard is an errand boy, Elsie is now 14 and no longer at school, Rose and Phyllis are still at school and the youngest child is now 8-year-old Eric.

The 1911 Census records that Robert and Rose have been married for 28 years and have had 10 children, 8 of them are still living.

The Darnell’s definitely live at number 27 until at least 1916.  Robert appears on the 1913 and 1914 Electoral Registers at this property and in 1916 Robert William lists 27 Ainsworth Street as his ‘intended place of residence’ in his Service Record.

Robert died in 1936, aged 76. Rose died in 1945 aged 81.

September 1917

“Albert Richard Baker (31), married, of 27 Ainsworth Street, milk carrier and dairyman with Messrs. Arnold and Tupling, dairymen, who put in a claim for exemption [from joining the Army] on the ground of unfitness, now wrote to the Tribunal asking to withdraw his claim.  The Tribunal acquiesced.

Albert enlisted in the Royal Flying Corps on the 25th September 1917 and into the Royal Air Force on the 1st April 1918. His Service Record also tells us the names of his two children and their ages in 1917, Alice Jane (5) and Ernest Lloyd (2).

Albert was 5ft7 and had two anchors tattooed on his left forearm.  He was discharged in April 1920.

1921 Census
Albert R Baker, 35, born in Cambridge, general labourer for H. Knights & Sons, Builder’s & Contractors of Huntingdon Road.

Florence E Baker, 29, born in Cambridge, home duties

Alice J Baker, 9, born in Cambridge, whole time at school,

Ernest L Baker, 5, born in Cambridge, whole time at school,

Albert and his wife Florence Eva lived at number 27 until 1926.

1926 onwards

Thomas and Florence Tingey move here from number 2 in 1926. They’d previously lived at number 7.

1939 – Thomas is a Stableman for the Cooperative.

Sources: UK census records (1881 to 1921), Cambridgeshire Burgess Rolls, 1939 Register, Register for 1914-1915 Polling District No.8 Petersfield Ward, Essex Baptisms, National School Admission Registers & Log-Books 1870-1914, England & Wales, Civil Registration Birth Index, 1837-1915, UK, Lunacy Patients Admission Registers, 1846-1912, British Army World War I Pension Records 1914-1920, Cambridgeshire, England, Electoral Registers, Burgess Rolls and Poll Books, 1722-1966, Cambridge Independent Press 07 September 1917, British Royal Air Force, Airmen’s Service Records 1912-1939


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