I’d like to introduce…

Edward George "Ted" Turner

Edward George Turner, known affectionately to his family and friends as Ted, was a kind hearted, gregarious, right jolly English gent, loved by all who knew him. He was born on the 27th of June 1911 at Blake Cottage, Horn Street in Winslow, Buckinghamshire, where his father was employed as head groom to Mr Gosling of Blake House.

And His Lovely Wife…


Miss Phyllis Mary Collins, daughter of William Collins, publican of the George Inn in Winslow, which is where Ted met her one fateful day in the 1930s

Mystery Monday: Just Who Was Mary Denchfield of the Wealds?

Mary Denchfield of the Weald Grounds in the parrish of Wing in the County of Bucks Dary Woman Being of Sound mind and perfect memory praised be God for it… made a will on 7 January 1733/34. In it, she made arrangements for her nephew Richard Denchfield and her kinswoman Elizabeth Penn to receive 50 shillings apiece following her death, with the bulk of her estate going to her nephew Mathew Denchfield. The record of her burial at Wing’s All Saints Church on 7 March 1734, described her as a “widow from Cotsloe,” a hamlet just west of the village, which is today known as Cottesloe Farm on Cublington Road. 

All Saints Parish Church in Wing

But who was she?
  • If she really was a widow, she made no mention of it in her will, nor did she acknowledge any living children or grandchildren.
  • Was “kinswoman Elizabeth Penn” a sister? If so, why not describe her as such?
  • Matthew and Richard, her nephews, must have been sons of one or more of her brothers or brothers-in-law
  • The wording of Mary’s will suggests they were already of full age by the time she wrote it, meaning Matthew and Richard were probably born before 1712
  • Mathew may have been the man who married Sarah TOSKEL in Soulsbury on 10 April 1738. He was described in the marriage register as Mathew Denchfield “lactarius” of Wing
    • This Mathew was perhaps the son of Mathew Denchfield and Joan/Joanna ROW, who were married in Soulbury on 7 April 1707. There are no records of children born to this couple, or associated burials for either Mathew or Joan/Joanna
  • If Mary’s burial record was a mistake, and she was a spinster, she may have been the daughter of John and Parnell, who was baptized on 16 December 1670. However that Mary had many neices and nephews, including a Richard baptized in 1725, but not a Mathew. Why would she not have included any of John’s other children? 
  • The only other Richard Denchfield known to be alive in the area in 1733 was Richard and Elizabeth’s son, who was baptized in 1707 and died in 1749. However he doesn’t appear to have had an Aunt Mary.

I suspect Mathew and Joanna settled elsewhere after their marriage, quite likely in another county altogether, and had a family which included sons Mathew and Richard, and a daughter named Mary. Some or all of the family returned to Wing before 1733. It is the scenario which makes the most sense. I’m going to broaden my search and extend it to neighboring counties to see if I can find relevant baptisms. Also, finding the elusive Elizabeth Penn may prove useful.

(Mystery Monday is a blog series hosted by Geneabloggers)

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