JUST where do you have to be born to
qualify as being a "Dabber" - someone born "within the old Nantwich
town boundaries?" This is a question that is often asked, and a
variation of the question
the former Cliffe maternity home. This was first in the parish of Hough
- at one time under the Nantwich Registration District - and
then, with boundary changes, in Wybunbury.
Does this count?
Let's ask the two
experts, Paul Simpson (Family Lines) and historian Andrew Lamberton
First, Paul Simpson:
ANYONE not born within the town boundary
cannot be a Dabber. The parish of Nantwich boundary is clear on the
tithe maps which are easy to compare with the modern versions. To
search these old maps go to
http://maps.cheshire.gov.uk/tithemaps/. You can switch two map
views between OS1910, OS1875, Aerial 1970s, Aerial 2000, Modern Map
and the Cheshire Tithe Map 1836-51. The tithe maps show all of the
old parish boundaries.
The link to the maps
gives data held by Chester Records Office (CRO) which is in the
public domain, but the material is copyright.
Here is a rough guide to
the boundaries on the roads out of town:
Welsh Row - just after the
almshouses and before Nantwich and Acton Grammar School (now Malbank
The B5074, Barony Road -
at Beam Bridge.
Middlewich Road - at the
end of All Saints' cemetery.
Park View - at the junction
with Birchin Lane.
Crewe Road - just after the
new Coppice Close.
Willaston - at the junction
of Green Lane and Eastern Road.
Newcastle Road - at Blakelow Farm.
London Road - where the
fork in the road with Newcastle Road used to be.
Audlem Road - at the
junction with Peter de Stapleigh Way (but not including the
Cronkinson Farm housing estate).
Audlem Road - where the sub
post office used to be.
Shrewbridge Road - just
before the river bridge, but not the lake, and following the river
to the railway bridge.
Wrenbury Road - at the
junction with Green Lane and back to Malbank School.
The Barony Hospital was
just inside the parish of Nantwich boundary which went over on to
the Beam Heath land, in the Parish of Nantwich in the Township of
As for The Cliffe maternity
home, this was in the parish of Hough which came under the Nantwich
Registration District. (See this page for a full list:
http://www.ukbmd.org.uk/genuki/reg/districts/ nantwich.html). The
district was active from 1837 to 1974 when it was taken over by
Cheshire Central at which time Nantwich became a sub-district. The
register is held by Cheshire Central Registers at Delamere House in
Anyone looking for their
registration will find a reference such as NA/XXX/XXX, the XXXs
representing figures and the second group being the entry in that
register which will also be on your birth certificate.
For the record (no pun
intended), any details provided are in the public domain on the
Internet - and available to all.
Marriages and Deaths data is open to anyone and no subscription is
Now Andrew Lamberton:
MY understanding of the definition of a
Dabber was that you had to be born, and lived, in Nantwich for 10
years within the old town boundaries. But I have not seen this
written down anywhere and I think there is probably no definitive
I'm not too familiar with
the arrangements for giving birth locally during the 20th Century,
but most babies in Nantwich were, I think, born at home.
There were nursing homes -
I know of two in Willaston where babies were born from 1929 to 1939
or so - but I have come across none in Nantwich.
Regarding The Cliffe, it
was used as a convalescent home for soldiers during the Second World
War. It became vacant for a while and was then used as a maternity
home from around 1947 to around 1965 when the maternity unit was
transferred to the Barony Hospital.
Footnote by John Brough (owner of "A
Dabber's Nantwich" website):
I AM sure that Andrew has made an
uncharacteristic error when he says people have to have lived in
Nantwich for 10 years to be a Dabber. My understanding is that you
are a Dabber from the moment you are born as long as the birth was
within the old town boundaries.
He may be confusing
it with people qualifying for a share of the Beam Heath Trust annual
dividend. This is paid to Nantwich householders or tenants - and so
not newly-born babies. Newcomers to the town who have a house within
the town boundaries qualify after seven years' residence. If you
leave town and then return, you qualify to receive the
money again after two years.
What is a Dabber?
I AND my cousins from Utah, U.S.A., are coming to Nantwich
in May (2011) to try to find the address 154 Swine Market where our
great, great, great grandfather, Augustus King, was registered
as a victualler.
He and his wife, Mary, had several children and my great, great
grandmother, Sarah Anne King, married into the Vaughans of
Hospital Street. She married a William Vaughan and they buried a
child, Ellen Vaughan, in St. Mary's before moving to Tunstall in
Sarah's brother moved to Utah and I have several hundred family
members there now, two of which are making the ancestral trip to
me in May.
We think that Frederick King and his brother, Robert, learned
the tanning trade at the tannery on the outskirts of Nantwich.
Could you please let me know if 154 Swine Market still exists,
and is there any information we could obtain which would reveal
the lives of our ancestors, the Kings and the Vaughans?
I am told that a Lloyd Vaughan was a mayor in Nantwich in the
1970s. He would have been my dad's third cousin.
This is a shot in the dark as I have just stumbled over you on a
Google search and I would be eternally grateful if you could
Robert Baggaley, Tunstall, Staffordshire.
Robert, I am
sending you a section of a Nantwich Board of Health map of 1851
shows all of Swine Market and you will see there are no more
than 25 buildings.
The number 154 you are
referring to is a common mistake when reading census information
as it is the enumerator's index number not the number of the
property. I spotted this when checking the Census information.
a victualler, I would have expected Augustus to be in one of the
two public houses on the street (The Red Lion is on Oat Market,
I think) so it would be either The White Lion (on the
corner of the street) or The Nantwich
Arms (on the right-hand side of the north to south part of the
street). To confirm the correct pub, Nantwich Library has a
book in the local history section on the pubs and landlords of
Nantwich and you should find the information you need in that. [Or
you could see Andrew Lamberton's note below. - Dabber]
Unfortunately, none of the buildings on the attached map, apart
from some on the side of Oat Market, exist now. This was a very
run-down area and was demolished in the late 1960/1970s. What
was the White Lion would be where the B&M shop is now and The
Nantwich Arms was in the middle of the opposite side of the
lA picture of the
Snow Hill area from the air appears on
this website and Swine Market is part of that area. You
should be able to match this to the map as the view is the same
way around, more or less.
lAs for Lloyd
Vaughan, until 2009 Nantwich had a Chairman of the
(now they have a Mayor) and the Chairmanís chain of office is now on
display at the Nantwich Museum, so you can visit and see that.
The full Board of Health maps are also available to view at the
lA "tannery on
the outskirts of the town" could be Blud's (pronounced Blewd's).
The tannery no longer exists but the owner's house is still
standing as 165 Welsh Row. Again, you can check this out in the
museum on the Board of Health
I CAN confirm that Augustus King
was the licensee of the Nantwich Arms in 1851. According to
Dr. J. A. MacGregor
(who wrote the book, ďThe Inns and Innkeepers of NantwichĒ),
he was only there from 1851 until 1856 when the licensee was
Robert later sent this
e-mail with more family information:
I AM so very, very grateful
for your information which I have already shared with my
cousins in Utah who are of King blood - like me. We
think this is the closest we have got to walking in the
steps of our ancestors.
wife, Mary, is buried in Tunstall cemetery. Augustus is
buried in Kidderminster. Their son, Frederick, went to
Utah and we have several hundred cousins in the Western
USA, many very important Mormons.
thank you for your time and your help.
Where can I find about family's failed business?
I AM looking
for some information about my great grandfather, Edward Hilditch,
who was born on August 13, 1838, in Mill Street, Willaston,
Nantwich, and died on May 9, 1922 in Nantwich. He had a boot and
shoe manufacturing business in Nantwich which went bankrupt in
about 1886. I was wondering where I might look to find more
about why the business failed and where he lived in Nantwich?
Paul Simpson replies:
You donít say
where you are from so I will assume you donít know the area.
There's not a lot on the business but the Census data is
1861, Edward is listed as a shoe manufacturer, and in 1881 he is
a boot cutter. In 1871 I canít make out what is written, and in
1891 and onwards he is an insurance agent.
Your comment about him being born
in Mill Street
is confirmed in the 1841 Census but the street is in Nantwich.
However, he may have been born in Willaston, a village next to
Nantwich on the way to Crewe.
1851, the family have moved to Marsh Lane off Welsh Row in
Nantwich, and by 1861 he is married with children and living at
Cartwright's Row (I canít remember where this is.
1871, there is no change of location but in 1881 they have moved
to No 1 Heath Bank Cottages off Birchin Lane (next to Park
View). They are still there in 1891.
Being an insurance agent must be a lot better for the family as
in 1901 they have moved to 32 Park View, a much better property,
and they are still there in 1911.
marriage certificate reference lists the wedding as a civil
marriage so that would be Roman Catholic or non-conformist or
even a register office but you would have to order the
certificate to find out. You can do this at
his wife, Mary, are buried at Whitehouse Lane
cemetery, Nantwich. Whitehouse Lane is a continuation of Park
Paul also sent Ron details of the
cemetery plot and more about the Hilditch family.
Andrew Lamberton told Paul: "Cartwright's
Row is made up of two rows of cottages off
Birchin Lane, now
called separately Bank Top Cottages and Heath Bank Cottages.
They were called Cartwright's Row because they were built on
land owned by Sampson Cartwright (see
Lost Houses in Nantwich).