Town criers


Some town criers in Witham

 

1728 Congregational church

Paid Richard Wright 6d ‘for crying the windows’ and then Samuel Clark 6s 5d ‘for mending the windows’ (M L Smith A Brief History of Witham Congregational C hurch, page 7)

 

Directories

Year Original entry
1874 Tyler Wm. cowkeeper, crier & bill poster
1878 Tyler William, cowkeeper, crier & bill poster
1886 Wood John, town crier
1890 Wood George, town crier
1895 Wood George, town crier & bill poster
1899 Butler John, town crier & bill poster, Bridge street
1902 Butler John, town crier & bill poster, Bridge street
1906 Butler John, town crier & bill poster, Bridge street

 

 

William Tylor

1841 census, HO 107/343/17, f.26, Maldon Road

[south of White Hart]

William Tylor 30 Shoe m born in Essex
Hannah Tylor 30 born in Essex
Harriett Tylor 8 born in Essex
Maria Tylor 6 born in Essex
James Tylor 4 born in Essex
Henry Tylor 1 born in Essex

1851 census, HO 107/1783, ff.179-180, pp.17-18, schedule 64, Maldon Road

[south of Baptist chapel]

William Tylor Head M 40
Hannah Tylor Wife M 43
Harriett Tylor Dau U 19
James Tylor Son U 15 Boot maker born Essex, Witham
Henry Tylor Son U 12 Errand boy born Essex, Witham
Mary A Tylor Dau U 6 Scholar born Essex, Witham
Thomas W Tylor Son U 6 Scholar born Essex, Witham

1861 census, RG9/1107, f.80, p.19, schedule 99, Newland Street

[just below Notts Yard]

William Tylor Head M 52 Bootmaker and town cryer born Essex, Kelvedon
Charlotte Tylor Wife M 44 born Essex, Abberton

1871 census, RG 10/1695, f.21, p.6, schedule 28, King’s yard

[now Kings Chase]

William Tylor Head M 60 Cowkeeper, town crier, bill poster born Essex, Kelvedon
Charlotte Tylor Wife M 53 born Essex, Abberton
Frederick Harper Servant 15 Cow boy born Essex, Witham

Directories

1874 Tyler Wm. cowkeeper, crier & bill poster
1878 Tyler William, cowkeeper, crier & bill poster

1881 census, RG 11/1809, f.41, p.9, schedule 45, Guithavon Street, private house

William Tylor Head M 72 Retired dairyman born Essex, Kelvedon
Charlotte Tylor Wife M 62 Wife born Essex, Abberton

1891 census, RG 12/1425, f.34, p.7, schedule 43, Guithavon Street

(between school and corner of Newland Street)

Charlot H Tylor Head Wid 69 Living on own means born Essex, Abberton

 

George Wood

1881 census, RG 11/1809, f.4, p.2, schedule 10, Bridge Street

James Wood Head M 63 Superannuated police constable born Essex, Heybridge
Matilda Wood Wife M 66 born Essex, Witham
George Wood Son U 40 Cordwainer born Essex, St Peters, Maldon
Emma Wood Granddau 15 Pupil teacher born Essex, Southminster

Directories

1886 Wood John, town crier
1890 Wood George, town crier
1895 Wood George, town crier & bill poster

1891 census, RG 12/1425, f.42, p.24, schedule 162

George Wood Head Single 50 Shoemaker born Essex, Maldon

Fairs, 1891

Re the proposed (and eventually successful) abolition of Witham’s fairs, the following note is included in P.R.O. HO 45/9835/B10169 (Victoria)

‘I Certify that Copies of this Notice have been posted by me at the usual Posting places in the Parish of Witham and have remained so posted during three successive weeks.

[signed] George Wood, Town Crier, Witham, 20 March 1891’.

 

John Butler [didn’t look further back]

1861 census, RG 9/1007, f.4, p.2, folio 4, schedule 9, Bridge Street

John William Butler Head M 36 Shoemaker born Essex, Witham
Mary Ann Butler Wife M 39 Wife of ditto born Essex, Witham
John William Butler Son U 16 Shoemaker born Essex, Witham
Eliza Butler Dau 10 Scholar born Essex, Witham
Harry Butler Son 8 Scholar born Essex, Witham
Frederick Butler Son 6 Scholar born Essex, Witham
Walter Butler Son 3 Scholar born Essex, Witham
Elizabeth Jane Butler Dau 1 Infant born Essex, Witham
Susan Butler Mother Wid 66 Nurse born Essex, Terling

1871 census, RG 10/1695, f.10, p.12, folio 65, Bridge Street

John Wm Butler Head M 46 Boot maker born Essex, Witham
Mary Ann Butler Wife 49 born Essex, Witham
William John Butler SOn U 27 Boot maker born Essex, Witham
Eliza Butler Dau U 20 Dress maker born Essex, Witham
Harry Butler Son U 18 Boot maker born Essex, Witham
Walter Butler Son U 13 Labourer born Essex, Witham
Elizabeth Butler Dau 10 Scholar born Essex, Witham
Robert Butler Son 8 Scholar born Essex, Witham
Susan Butler Mother W 77 born Essex, Halstead

1881 census, RG 11/1809, f.4, p.2, schedule 7, Bridge Street

[between river bridge and Morning Star]

John Wm Butler Head M 56 Boot maker born Essex, Witham
Mary Ann Butler Wife M 59 born Essex, Witham
John Wm Butler S Widr 37 Boot maker born Essex, Witham
Elizabeth J Catler[?] D M 21 Wife of a gardener [deleted] born Essex, Witham
Robert Butler S U 19 Boot maker born Essex, Witham

1891 census, RG 12/1425, f.6, p.5, schedule 32, Bridge Street

John W Butler Head Widr 66 Shoemaker (neither employer nor employee) born Essex, Witham
William J Butler Son Widr 46 Shoemaker (neither employer nor employee) born Essex, Witham
Rose T Butler Niece 7 born Essex, Witham
Myra Butler Niece 6 born Essex, Witham
Lydia Ward Visitor S 30 born Essex, Wethersfield
Ethel Ward Visitor 3 born Essex, Braintree
Celia Ward Visitor 1 born Essex, Braintree

1901 census, RG 13/1725, f.5, p.2, schedule 8, Bridge Street

John Wm Butler Widr Widr 76 Shoe maker (own account) born Essex, Witham
Wm Jno Butler Son M 56 Shoe maker (own account) born Essex, Witham
Lydia Butler Dau in law M 41 born Essex, Wethersfield
Ethel Butler Gdau 13 born Essex, Braintree
Cecilia Butler Gdau 10 born Essex, Braintree
Baden[?] Jo Butler SOn 7 mo born Essex, Witham

 

Directories

1899 Butler John, town crier & bill poster, Bridge street
1902 Butler John, town crier & bill poster, Bridge street
1906 Butler John, town crier & bill poster, Bridge street

 

Braintree and Witham Times 3 December 1931, page 2

page 7 ‘A Miscellany by Nomad. The trade or practice of Town Crier has passed away in a practical sense, although one or two towns still appoint a “crier” purely for traditional reasons. Town criers … used to “cry” auctioneers’ sales, concerts, or any event which the public were expected to attend. …

Witham’s last town crier was Mr John Butler, or “Lord Paget” as he was familiarly known. He succeeded a crier named George Wood. “Lord Paget” was a shoemaker by trade, and with Mr Joe Pluck was considered the best “snobber” in the town [Pluck was also a shoemaker]. His voice was in keeping with his frame, namely, on the big side. His stentorian preamble of “O yez! O yez! O yez! This is to give notice” etc. quickly drew a crowd. His fee was 1s 6d per announcement, but if Chipping Hill was included he tacked on an extra shilling. “’Butler bore a striking resemblance to Lord Paget, an MP of the day, and in conversation always upheld the views of this peer. By virtue of his shoe-mending trade he was often dubbed “Lord Patchit” while children would call after him “Patchit, cut it, cart it, stack it and thatch it”. He was usually addressed as “My lord” instead of “Mr Butler”. “Lord Paget” passed away about 25 years ago at a ripe old age, and the office of Witham town crier died with him.

Copy of photo obtained. Caption says ‘Mr John Butler, Witham’s last Town Crier. Reproduction by Butcher’s Studios’.

 

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