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A rambler's view of Wymeswold
summary by David Keene
In October 1880 a reporter for the Leicester Chronicle who wrote under the pseudonym of 'Rambler', set off from Loughborough station for a walk to Wymeswold. He was in the habit of taking the train from Leicester to see and write an occasional article on a Leicestershire village. The walk to the village was described in flowery language with fulsome praise with expectations of a well-built village but this changed abruptly at the start of 'Little London'.
The rest of the village was given more sympathetic attention at length with a few lines on many people and places and possibly not all correct.
I have not been able to confirm any record of a Mr Clark 'late of a Wymeswold beer house' alleged by Rambler to become MP for the district and Lord Mayor of London.
Colour Sergeant George Calladine, 19th Foot
Re-enactors dressed as the 19th Foot Regiment (1850s uniform)
Thomas Calladine, a gardener from Melbourne, and his wife Millicent moved to Wymeswold in the early 1780s with two of their sons Robert and William. George was born in 1793 and baptised at St Mary's. When Thomas died in 1798 Millicent took the family back to Melbourne.
When 12 or 13 years old George was sent to Wymeswold to work for 'farmer Limbert' (probably John Limbert, baptised at St Mary's in 1792) until another older brother, John, living at Old Radford found him an opening as an apprentice silk stockinger at New Radford with a Mr Harrington. George's apprenticeship started in 1805 and he was soon able to earn more than his twelve shillings a week pay at the lucrative silk trade. In spite of this he ran away in 1808. His bid for freedom did not last and in 1809 his master took him back. During his apprenticeship he benefitted from 'instruction' from one of his companions, an educated journeyman who taught him how to read and write.
In that same year, 1809, a review of Nottinghamshire troops was held to celebrate the fifteenth year of George III's reign during the time of the Napoleonic wars. The martial display impressed George and stirred his need for adventure. Both his older brothers, William and Robert, were then in the Derbyshire Militia and in 1810 George paid his master £4.10s to be released from his indenture and joined the militia at Chelmsford. His brother Robert, who was a serjeant, took George in hand, got him posted to the same company, made sure he knew his duties and much to George's consternation, took charge of his bounty and pay to make sure he did not squander it. George got it back later when his regiment was posted to Hythe and Winchelsea to guard the Military Canal.
The opportunity to join a line regiment with the attractions of a bounty, overseas travel and escape from his guardian brothers was irresistible and in May 1812 George was sworn in for seven years into the 19th Regiment of Foot (later the 1st Battalion, The Green Howards). On 4th June 1814 the regiment set sail from Spithead off Portsmouth on HMS Arniston with an armada of ships bound for Capetown and Ceylon. It was a long and often stormy voyage with a stay of several months at Capetown to avoid clashing with a large Dutch flotilla before arriving at Colombo in January the following year. The regiment stayed in Ceylon for five years and were involved in much fighting to depose the king of Kandy and to suppress rebels, returning to England in 1820.
In the years that followed the regiment was posted alternatively to many parts of England and Ireland all of which required long marches in all weathers. George was picked out for promotion several times so progressed to lance corporal, corporal, paymaster sergeant and finally to full regimental colour sergeant. While stationed at Weedon, the central depot for arms in England, he saw the woman who was to become his wife. They were married on the 14th June 1821. George never referred to her by her Christian name (Ann) but simply as 'my wife'.
By 1839 George also held the position of acting sergeant major at the Cork depot but was now so disabled with rheumatoid arthritis in his knees that he was given invalid status and travelled to Kilmainham to be discharged after 27 years service with a pension of 2 shillings and 1½ pence per day.
Now Mr and Mrs Calladine and their son, also called George, had one more arduous five or six day journey by night ferry to Liverpool, train to Manchester, barge to Whaley Bridge, then the High Peak railway, powered alternately by horse and by stationary engines and some difficult walking to Cromford where they got the coach to Derby to be met by his brother Robert.
They settled at Derby and for fifteen months George was Master of the All Saints Workhouse before he became a collector of the Poor Rates for Derby. During all his army life George kept a detailed diary of his experiences and thoughts which he probably rewrote when retired. This manuscript lay undisturbed in the regimental records until 1922 when Major M.L. Ferrar had it published.
During his army career George and his wife had known many times of poor health and great hardship. His regiment was constantly marching in all seasons and weathers and his wife was usually with the baggage train. The cost in health and infant mortality was high. Of the ten children born by Ann while in service only George survived. Another child, Thomas, was born in 1838 at Derby. Ann's health was not good and she died aged forty in 1846. George died in 1876 aged 83 years.
This article was abstracted from:
Holworthy inquest 1851
Joan Shaw has donated to the WHO archive a folder of notes relating to the death of two children, Frederick and Elizabeth Holworthy, in 1850 and 1851. The father was R.J. Holworthy and the family lived in Wymeswold.
A newspaper account provides 'graphic' details of a postmortem which was held in the Bull's Head, Wymeswold, later Collington's butcher shop. The deaths were attributed to natural causes, although there remained a doubt that 'they were occasioned by improper medicines, innocently administered.'
Joan's notes attempt to identify R.J. Holworthy from trade directories and other records. An R.J. Holworthy of Wymeswold was made insolvent in 1849 and is presumably the same person. Robert James Holworthy married Jane Mee at St Margaret's in Leicester on 1st March 1852 and gave his occupation as 'builder'.
Notes from church registers reveal a Holworthy family resident in East Leake from the mid-18th century, with occasional additional register entries for Rempstone and Wymeswold. These suggests a John Holworthy was a 'druggist' around 1850; he may have been R.J. Holworth's father. However the inquest mostly concerned drugs taken by the children supplied by B.W. Brown of Wymeswold. Included in the photocopies is an advertisment in the Leicester Mercury of 9th January 1841 for 'Holworthy's Imperial Anodyne Ointment' which will produce 'expeditious relief' of a remarkably long list of ailments.
If anyone wants to delve further then I will scan these notes and make them available. Please email email@example.com
Walton school children 1904 to 1908Three photographs were passed to Louise Walton by Pete Towle, a farmer in Walton on the Wolds. His uncle, Leslie Towle, is one of the children. The photographs were digitised and restored by Martin Thompson. Thanks to everyone for their assistance.
The three photographs are for the years 1904–6; 1906–7 and 1907–8.
Click on each photograph for a higher-resolution version.
Wymeswold children's Christmas party circa 1937
David Smith, son of Ellen 'Nell' Smith, kindly sent a scan of a photograph of Wymeswold children at a Christmas party in the Memorial Hall. With the help of the late Bill Wooton David identified nearly everyone present. David thinks he was too young to attend, although his older brother, Sidney, is in the photo.
Thanks to John Harrison (whose older brother George was also there) for help with dates of birth we think the photo was taken December 1937. But it could be a year either side.
Click here for a higher resolution version of the photograph.
Click here for most of the names.
Click here for the names written sideways.
Click on the images to enlarge.
Dedication of the war memorial window