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Family history help

by janet on 5 March 2013 · 40 comments

Local historian and WHS founder, Eleanor Waldock, is happy to help with your Walkern family history queries. She doesn’t charge a fee, but donations to St Mary’s Church are appreciated.

Email eleanor.waldock@btopenworld.com


{ 40 comments… read them below or add one }

Paul Savage July 26, 2020 at 3:33 pm

Hi the Savage family lived in Walkern and surrounding area for a long time. At the beginning of the 1900 there were (I am told) over a Hundred people called Savage in the Village. My gt, gt Grand parents lived at 70 Totts lane. I have been up and down Totts Lane and it does not seem long enough to have 70 houses in it. Did it extend to Church End at one point?


Tom April 3, 2021 at 11:36 am

My mother knew Olive and Eva Savage very well and now lives in the house they lived in for decades


Simon Molyneux November 4, 2018 at 7:23 pm

Hello Eleanor, my great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great grandfather lived in Walkern. The information I have on him is:
“George Andrews 1635-1670 (my great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great grandfather)
My information on George comes from the record of the baptism of his son George which says that his parents were George and Grace Andrews, and from an Ancestry family tree. It looks as if George and Grace had at least three children. I can’t find out who George or Grace’s parents were, so cannot pursue this line further. One Ancestry tree gives his name as George Guillemi Andrews, but the introduction of an Italian name does not sound convincing. According to one Ancestry tree he died in 1670, but another tree has George remarrying and having two children with another wife, but as the dates of birth of these two children are before Grace’s death, I think this unlikely in an age where divorce was extremely rare, so I think some children are attributed to the wrong mother. The records are confusing.

George married Grace Brocket, probably in 1655. They had three children that I know of, two of whom were born in Bennington (Benington) which is just five miles from Walkern, so it is likely that George and Grace lived there for at least part of their married life.”

At this juncture records became unreliable so I have not gone further back.

As for William Ball – he appears to have married Mary Bennett who also married Thomas Bray (is it the same Mary Bennett???) so was there something going on there? I can’t find anything else to suggest what it was about.

We passed through Walkern last weekend and had lunch at the pub and looked at St Mary’s. I had never been there before.


Caron February 8, 2018 at 9:27 pm

Hi I’m looking for any information that you can give me on the daughter of Jane Wenham and also her husband Philip Wenham. I can’t find anything about them on any website, and I’m hoping that you can help me. It’s as if they’re both an enigma. I’m trying to find evidence that Jane was, as I believe , not a witch but a healer and a wise woman, but to vindicate her I need to know how her husband died and about her daughter. Any help however small world be greatly appreciated. Many thanks.


Eleanor Waldock February 26, 2018 at 10:48 am

Hi Caron I have been looking at the Burial records for St.Mary’s Church Walkern re. the Wenhams in 1566 August 25th Margaret Wenham was buried,1589 November 23rd Edmunde Weanum, 1623 January 14th Ann Wenham, 1625 October 20th George junior Wenham, 1633 March 23rd George Wenham, 1646 June 24th Alice Wenham, 1659 September 8th An Wenham, 1661 July 16th Edward Wenham the elder, 161 July 16th Elizabeth Wenham daughter of Edward.1679 December 21st Mary Wenham, 1683 October 25th Henry,senior Wenham, 1691 October 7th Anne Wenham widow, 1727 January 30th Edward Wenham,1747 May 3rd Mary Wenham the wife of John (a miller) 1757 August 14ohn Wenham, 1781 September 18th Eleanor Wenham spinster. If you get in touch with the Hertfordshire Archives and Local Studies at Register Office Block, CHR 002, County Hall, Pegs Lane, Hertford SG13 8EJ they have the Jane Wenham trial information if this would be any help to you. Best Wishes Eleanor Waldock


samantha evangelista January 7, 2018 at 3:24 pm

Hi I would be interested if anyone has used the Were related app from ancestry and come up with anyone famous as I have and they are descended from Sophia Cock and Jonas Cock! (Warner) If you have an ancestry tree just put app on your phone and then the Were related app also and the name will come up … “It does not do to Dwell on Dreams and forget to live”! A clue 😉 enjoy


Helen Mansfield December 14, 2017 at 2:52 am

Dear Eleanor
My ancestors (Sadler) came from Benington and Walkern. I would like some information on the ones from Benington, however I am not sure whether you can help me as I could not find anyone to contact on the Benington Village website. I look forward to hearing from you. Helen


Eleanor Waldock February 26, 2018 at 10:28 am

Hi Helen, I am unable to help you with the Sadler Family there are none recorded in Walkern and I do not have any means of looking at the Benington Records but if you get in touch with Hertfordshire Archives and Local Studies , Register Office Block, CHR002, County Hall, Pegs Lane, Hertford SG13 8EJ tel: 0300 123 4049 they would certainly be able to help you as they hold all the Parish Records there, if the Sadlers are recorded. Eleanor Waldock


Nancy Reynolds October 10, 2017 at 10:07 am

Eleanor, I am in London for 1-2 weeks now, landed yesterday. I am hoping to come to St Mary’s in Walkern to explore my familial connections to the Grouch/Lovelace story–1640s. Is the church open everyday? Historical information? What would be the best day to come visit? Are you available to help with searching? It looks like Stevenage is the best place to stainer Walkern. I will come by public transport. Thanks for any help you can give.


Eleanor Waldock September 25, 2017 at 1:49 pm

If anyone needs help with Family History in Walkern please contact my email. Thanks 25.9.2017


Jane Rosado, nee Muncey March 22, 2018 at 10:45 pm

Hi Eleanor, it’s me Jane, I’m not really sure if I should get in touch with you this way. If it’s not I’ll write to your address. I’ve been trying to find out where I cought the polio. You see I thought I knew then somebody told me something different. I thought I was at a home while my mum was having Ann (my sister) then I was told that Muriel lumbis, (Then living at the bottom of Moors Ley) was looking after me. Also anyone know where and what was the name of the place I stayed in when I was having treatment. I know it was like a big house and it was between Hitchen and Luton. Just thought that maybe somebody in the village might be able to help.
None of my family can’t remember. Hope you can help. Many thanks. Jane


Eleanor Waldock September 26, 2018 at 2:51 pm

Dear Jane, sorry I have not replied to you but I have not been looking at the History Society site
I am afraid that I cannot answer these questions because I did not live here until 1964 so therefore I would not have known about you until we moved in next door to you in 1965 Best Wishes Eleanor


Andy Whitaker April 7, 2017 at 8:03 pm

Good Evening,
I am hoping someone maybe able to help me with my search on the Streeter family. I recently visited Ardley church and found the grave stone of my great grandfathers brother Edward Streeter died 1945, and his wife Ruby inez Streeter, Ruby died in 1927 and I believe Edward married a Sarah Wensley, having visited the area I was told that Edward and I think Sarah had two children a boy named Dennis Streeter, and a daughter, Edward I think May had been the landlord of the Chequers pub in wood end. I believe Dennis may had worked at a butchers shop in walkers owned I think by the shepherd family? Any information would be fantastic,
Many thanks for your time,


Eleanor Waldock November 28, 2017 at 1:23 pm

Hi Andy I have not been able to trace the Streeter Family in Walkern. Eleanor Waldock


Susan Melling December 16, 2016 at 11:17 pm

Hi there! I’ve just found this website and am amazed at the people I recall from my childhood near Walkern. I lived at Clay End, attending school in Benington. But I was at secondary school in Buntingford where I shared classes with a Christine Bruce. Maybe she would remember a chubby girl called Susan Hurley? I was married at St Mary’s, Walkern in September 1969. Now living near Oxford.


Angela Harrison August 8, 2018 at 11:51 am

Dear Eleanor
As Angela Edwards, I lived in the High Street with my parents Tom and Ann Edwards. I was so pleased to hear from Sue (Hurley) as I also went to school with Christine Bruce, David Standing, Terry Beadle – and I am still in touch with Ann Meekin. Neil and I have lived in Cyprus since 2003. My Granny Edwards kept every family document possible so we now lead our U3A Genealogy Group here as we all try to write our family histories.
(I have the original letter of engagement from Mr Sterling of Wrights to my Dad “to start work on Tuesday 19 October 1937 at 8 am”)!


Eleanor Waldock September 26, 2018 at 3:27 pm

Dear Angela , Sorry I have not been in touch with you sooner nice to hear from you and to hear that you are doing so well with your Family History, I remember when Philip my husband used to give you lifts to work, that seem a long while ago, Wrights is now a Tea Shop and is doing very well it has won awards, the shop is on the side of the house that used to be the Garage. I did not know that you now live in Cyprus, Philip and I still live in Moors Ley Walkern we bought our House some years ago. Our daughter Jackie lives in London. If ever you want to get in touch do use my email. Best Wishes Eleanor Waldock


samantha Ward August 7, 2016 at 1:45 pm

Hi my family goes back to Anthony Warner 12 August 1677 Walkern Herts my 8th great grandfather! Buried in Walkern.
I believe his father Antonie Warner was born in 1642 in Walkern!
Henry Warner
BIRTH 22 APRIL 1739 • Walkern, Hertfordshire, England
DEATH MARCH 1783 • Walkern, Hertfordshire, England
6th great-grandfather

John Warner
BIRTH 17 APRIL 1757 • Walkern, Hertfordshire, England
DEATH 25 NOVEMBER 1848 • Walkern, Hertfordshire, England
5th great-grandfather

William Warner
BIRTH 12 JUN 1796 • Walkern, Hertfordshire, England
DEATH 11 APR 1879 • Walkern, Hertfordshire, England
4th great-grandfather

John Warner
BIRTH ABT 1817 • Walkern Hertfordshire England
DEATH 1881 • Walkern, East Hertfordshire District, Hertfordshire, England
3rd great-grandfather

Caroline Warner who married my granddads dad( Ward)
BIRTH 25/03/1851 • Walkern, Hertfordshire, England
DEATH 18 SEP 1921 • Lye End Farm, Sandon, Hertfordshire
2nd great-grandmother

I have a picture of caroline warner if you are interested she was born in Walkern. If you have any other pictures or information I would be grateful many thanks



Christine Johnston December 1, 2016 at 11:20 pm

Hi Sam
I go back thru the same family tree and have a lot of info regarding the Warners if u r interested. Please contact me if u would like to share info with me. Tks


samantha evangelista January 7, 2018 at 3:15 pm

Hi I have only just seen this My email is sjevangelista@virginmedia.com
I have a tree on ancestry a photograph of Caroline warner and some news paper articles regarding the family!

Please contact me and i will share



denise willis December 9, 2016 at 3:19 pm

My Grandfather, William James Webb was born in Walkern in 1875, I understand that his his father was Butler at the Rectory, his mother Sarah was a Warner. I think Sarah may have been a kitchen maid at the Rectory. The family later moved to Rotherhithe, and the Walkern connection was lost. I would be fascinated in any related information.


Emma April 25, 2016 at 3:42 pm

Hello! I’m curious about Bridgefoot farm – do you know if it was built by the Bridgefoot family? My maiden name is Bridgefoot but we do not have much information about our family prior to a great grandfather coming to Australia in the mid 1800’s. Would be interesting to know if the farm has any connection to the family?
Many thanks


Carol johnson October 31, 2015 at 1:15 pm

Hello Eleanor
I wonder if you would be so kind and see if you could find any information about the Miles family for me.
My great grandfather Albert Miles was born in Walkern August 28th 1862. Also any info on George Miles , Eliza Parker , John Miles , Mary Ann Winter. Benjamin Miles , Jane Chalkley. John Miles Alice Carter phew I think that will keep you busy!
Look forward to any news.
Carol Johnson


Eleanor Waldock November 14, 2015 at 3:34 pm

Hi Carol Sorry I have taken a while to pick up your request, would it be possible for you to write to me stating all the persons that you wish me to look up, it would be easier that way, I do ask for a donation for the work as it goes to St.Mary’s Church in Walkern.You can reply using my email address eleanor.waldock@btopenworld.com I should certainly be able to help you. Best Wishes Eleanor


Judy Rose March 27, 2016 at 10:27 pm

Hi Carol,

A lot of your names are in my husband’s tree! I’m currently looking (and tearing my hair out!) for either the birth date or age at marriage for Jane Chalkley. Although I can find the marriage records on line for her and Benjamin Miles, there is no date for her. Can you help?


Kimberley September 25, 2015 at 10:19 pm

Hi there!
I am descended from the Savages and the Warners from Walkern.
I am planning a visit to do some further research past my descendants William Savage (b1814 d 1886) and his father Thomas Savage. Would love to hear any hints or tips you have for me! I have no living family to grill
Thank you



Eleanor Waldock November 14, 2015 at 3:37 pm

Hi Kimberly, I can certainly help you with the Savage and Warner Families can you send me an email letting me know your interest, I do ask for a donation for the work, my email is eleanor.waldock@btopenworld.com


Tony Chadwick June 12, 2015 at 4:08 am

Hello, I am searching the family of Jonas Cock who married Sarah Ann Bray in 1793. They lived in Walkern, with Jonas being buried there in 1842. Sarah was born in 1774. Her ancestors include Brays, Andrews, and Kimptons all connected with Walkern. Any information would be greatly appreciated.


Eleanor Waldock November 14, 2015 at 3:41 pm

Hi Tony first of all I apologise for not replying to your request as you can imagine we have had a very eventful year with the Magna Carta celebrations, but if you would like to send me an email stating what you would like me to look at I will try and find information for you, I do ask for a donation my email is eleanor.waldock@btopenworld.com


Rodney Berry February 7, 2015 at 4:31 pm

Hello Elenor.

I am searching for information my family that originated in Walken herts.
Benjamin Berry around 1730
I have a family tree and thats about how far the information is so far . i.e. Walkern. I wounder if you can advise and maybe help me find where Benjamin was living and his family.

Thank you and hope you can help

Best regards

Rodney Berry


Eleanor Waldock May 31, 2015 at 9:06 pm

Hi Rodney, Having helped you with your Family History I was amazed to find out that there may be a connection between the Berry’s and the Waldock’s, I believe that you were going to put me in touch with your cousin Susan who has been working on the Family Tree. Best Wishes Eleanor


Janet July 29, 2013 at 12:17 am

I’ve been researching my family beginning with my mothers. All of my ancestors were British and arrived in America in the early 1600’s. The main names I have followed are: Stillwell, Welch, Wright
and Benedict. I hit a wall with a John Wright born 22 Dec. 1605 in Walkern, Hertforshire, England. His father was also John Wright. Are there any possible records of these John Wrights anyplace near your area?
Any information about either the persons or the town at that time would be most appreciated.

Jan (Janet) Lynne Anderson (by marriage).


Eleanor Waldock May 31, 2015 at 8:46 pm

Hi Jan, First of all a great big apology for not replying to you, I have been looking at Wright.
Transcribed Burials for St.Mary’s Church. Walkern from 1559 – 2000.
1642 December 28th WRIGHT John son of John and Martha.
I also checked the Strict Baptist Records and the United reformed Church Records and none of these names appear. Best Wishes Eleanor


Polly Macmillan July 27, 2013 at 6:25 pm

Hi Nicol, I was a friend of your Mother, Christine Bruce. I am known as Polly now, but I was born Pauline Swain.My family lived in Totts Lane, not far from theirs. I would love to hear how your family are now. Both my parents, Vic and Joyce Swain have been gone for many years and sadly there is no memorial for them, as they wished. I vaguely remember the house you mentioned above St Mary’s Church Hall (where we had Youth Club and Girls Guides for some time until the School Hall was later used) I am sure I went to birthday parties at their house. I also went to Walkern School and have many very happy memories of the school and the village, I left Walkern at the young age of 19 to get married. The meadows above your Grandparents house were full of wild flowers, and the ‘Walks’ nearby had an abundance of wild violets which we girls picked for our mothers. Dirty Lane, nearby, was also a good source of a variety of now uncommon flowers, I spent many happy hours exploring the surrounding countryside! Walkern was an idyllic place to grow up.


Nicol December 12, 2013 at 12:06 pm

Polly, what wonderful recollections, how lovely that you remember my Dear family. Yes they are all well. I wonder if it is possible to use the email addresses to contact each other? I could pass it on to Mum?


Polly Macmillan (Pauline) December 29, 2013 at 6:51 pm

Nichol, yes please pass on my email address to your Mum. I haven’t replied before now as I only look on the WHS website irregularly – sorry, I would love to catch up.
Nichol Yes please pass on my email address to your Mum, it would be lovely to catch up. In fact I would love to hear from anyone who remembers me in Walkern. I hope to come to a WHS meeting some time.


Eleanor Waldock May 31, 2015 at 8:53 pm

Hi Pauline, You probably don’t remember me, but I am Philip Waldock’s wife, we used to have a lot to do with your Mum and Dad, especially sport connected, Cricket and Football as Philip used to play both, also with Don your uncle who we still see on a regular basis, we used to have some great times all of us.


Pauline Macmillan October 30, 2016 at 6:18 pm

Hi Eleanor, Sorry I haven’t replied before now, it just goes to show how often I look at the WHS website. I am in regular contact with Uncle Don and he tells me that he sees you although I haven’t heard him say so lately, but I know that he and Eileen have had some health issues. I keep in touch with Mary Ashurst (that was) and Cecilia Boorman (also that was ). We met up in April and we haven’t all three been together for over 60 years! You can imagine the fun we had. We are now in regular contact by Facebook. I have very fond memories of growing up in Walkern.

Nicol McDowell July 7, 2013 at 8:48 am

My Grandfather was Raymond Bruce who lived in the cottage up the end of church lane with his wife Amy and four beautiful daughters June, Christine, Mary and Elizabeth. They lived in a cottage behind\attached to what used to be the old church hall. It was in the meadow above St Marys Church where my mother Christine and her sisters played. Raymond or Bob as he was known had a lot to do with the church and I remember had a large set of keys that let us into the vestry where he readied things for the next church service while I played and studied the saints and architecture of that wonderful place. Raymond and Amy moved to Moors Ley with their growing family where Bob wrote the weekly Walkern post for the Comet newspaper and cycled it to the newspapers headquarters in Letchworth on a weekly basis. The girls where schooled and married in Walkern church and I as a child would stay weekends and school holidays. We all have a great affiliation with the village and even though sadly both Grandparents are no longer with us, Grandchildren are brought over to tend to the graves and frolic in the ford when it is plentiful. It would be interesting to hear of any one else’s thoughts or memories of my dear family.


Eleanor Waldock May 31, 2015 at 8:59 pm

Hi Nicole, I certainly remember your Grandparents, through Church with you Grandfather, and also when they moved up to Moors Ley, Walkern. I still live in the same road, Bob was very interested in Gardening, and would chat about it, in fact in our front Garden we have a Weeping Prunus Cherry Tree that your Grandfather once got for us, and it is still going strong, I am not sure how old it is. Best Wishes Eleanor


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