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28 Hooper Street

A wood carver, a gamekeeper, a tea salesman and a lorry driver

28 Hooper Street is one of a terrace of five houses on the south side of Hooper Street.

1881 census

John Mitchell, 41, wood carver, b. Husborne Crawley, Bedfordshire
Emma Mitchell, 37, b. Braunstone, Northamptonshire
William Mitchell, 13, grocer’s errand boy, b. Fenny Stratford, Buckinghamshire
Amy Mitchell, 10, scholar, b. Fenny Stratford, Buckinghamshire
Frederick Mitchell, 8, scholar, b. Longstowe, Cambridgeshire
Sarah White, mother-in-law, widow, 65, b. Rugby, Warwickshire

John Mitchell gave his occupation as wood carver. Ten years earlier, when he and Emma lived in Fenny Stratford, Buckinghamshire, his occupation was iron moulder. It is possible that he carved wood patterns for cast iron moulds at Headly’s iron foundry.

By 1901 John and Emma had left the city for the village of Gamlingay, where John worked as a self-employed wood carver. In 1911 they were living near Ampthill, Bedfordshire. Curiously, John gives his occupation as ‘American Navy pensioner’. Perhaps he spent time in the United States in the early 1860s, when he seems to be absent from the UK census records.

1891 census

George Bayley, 25, game keeper, b. Hellifield, Yorkshire
Harriett Bayley, 29, b. Great Wilbraham, Cambridgeshire
Mary A Bayley, 8 months, b. Walton West, Yorkshire

1901 census

Richard Peers Stiles, 45, tea traveller, b. Newport, Essex
Alice Stiles, 46, b. Hertford
William R P Stiles, 20, shop assistant, b. Stansted, Essex
Clifton Stiles, 17, shop assistant, b. Stansted, Essex
Gladys M Stiles, 13, b. Stansted, Essex
Donald Stiles, 9, b. Stansted, Essex

1911 census

Richard Peers Stiles, 56, grocer’s assistant, b. Newport, Essex
Alice Stiles, 57, b. Hertford
William Peers Stiles, 29, grocer’s shop assistant, b. Stansted, Essex
Clifton Stiles, 27, tailor, b. Stansted, Essex
Donald Stiles, 19, printer’s compositor, b. Stansted, Essex
32 years married, 4 children

In 1915 Clifton Stiles was sentenced to seven years’ penal servitude for a bizarre scam in which he forged the will of a local undertaker, Ellis Merry, of 28 Abbey Walk (see e.g. Cambridge Independent Press, 28  May 1915, page 7).

The Stiles family were still at the address in 1920.

1939 England and Wales register

By 1939 the inhabitants were lorry driver Albert Sanderson and his wife Violet. They were still at the address in 1966.


UK census records (1841 to 1911), General Register Office birth, marriage and death indexes (1837 onwards), the 1939 England and Wales Register, and electoral registers.


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