Tag Archives: slapton


Sarah Tearle nee Bishop, 1829, Oxon, UK

I am now going to have a look at the story of Sarah Bishop b1829 of Little Milton, Oxfordshire. I don’t have the 1841 census return because she would have been 12 so possibly at home in Little Milton and there are three Sarah Bishops there. Without the marriage certificate, I can’t be sure I have the right one.

HOWEVER – in 1851, Sarah is a servant for a farmer in Slapton, Bucks and there she meets our handsome John.

1851 = Sarah Bishop 1829 Oxon servt to Thomas Ginger Slapton

In 1861 Sarah and John have a lovely family, John is a maltster and Sarah looks like she can afford to stay home and look after the children.

1861 = John 1825 Dagnall Sarah 32 William 8 George 6 Jabez 5 Sarah A 3 Louisa B 1 in Slapton

John dies in 1867 and times get very difficult. William goes to live with Uncle George in Watford (John’s brother) while George becomes apprenticed to a grocer in Dunstable. By 1871 Sarah is called a victualler and has only Jabez, Sarah and Anna left at home, while Louisa is a nursemaid in the household of Alfred Gurney, a malster of Slapton. Perhaps he works for Sarah… But I suppose there is more than one pub in the village. Sarah is running the Carpenter’s Arms.

1871 = Sarah 1829 Oxon Jabez 16 Sarah A 13 Anna F 7 in Slapton

In 1881, Sarah is a publican and grocer. Another example of just how strong and determined our Victorian mothers were. It looks as though the business has grown. Sarah Ann is a dressmaker, possibly working from the store, as is Louisa, now back home with Mother. Anna is a pupil teacher. In the 1880s a pupil teacher was a teacher apprentice (sort of) and was working to get onto the teaching staff as opposed to an assistant teacher, who helped out, but would never become a teacher.

1881 = Sarah 1829 Oxon Sarah A 23 Louisa B 21 Ann T 17 in Slapton

In 1891, Sarah and dau Sarah Ann are running the business in Leighton Rd, Slapton in a property called a “public house and grocer” by the census enumerator. Sarah Ann is running her dressmaking business from the premises, probably helping Mother in busy times. Sarah calls herself an Innkeeper and grocer. She is 62, still working.

1891 = Sarah 1829 Oxon Sarah A 35 in Slapton

In 1901 Sarah and Sarah Ann are in Ivinghoe! Sarah, at 72 is now a retired grocer and Sarah Ann is still a dressmaker “on own account” meaning she is not on parish relief. They are living next door to George and Susan Ginger. He is a lock-keeper on the canal and I wonder if it is this pair who has drawn Sarah to Ivinghoe. We may never know, but Sarah has well deserved a quiet and gracious retirement.

1901 = Sarah 1829 Little Milton Oxon Sarah Ann 43 in Ivinghoe.

Here is the last chapter in the story of Sarah nee Bishop. Pat Field sent me this picture from the Ivinghoe Churchyard. She says:

“Have today found a Tearle Gravestone in Ivinghoe. The details on the stone were “In Loving Memory of Sarah Ann Tearle who died Aug 19th 1910 aged 52yrs also Sarah Tearle Mother of above who died Oct 5 1915 aged 87yrs.”

She certainly did have a nice long retirement.

Sarah Tearle headstone, Ivinghoe

Sarah Tearle headstone, Ivinghoe