About

Mine is a relatively small family.  As a child, I had no brothers, no sisters, no grandparents, no aunts, and only one uncle, whom I met once.  Obviously then, no cousins either.  I didn’t mind.  I listened to my schoolfriends moaning about the torments of having a brother, how annoying their sisters were, and how embarrassing they found their Uncle Norman and Auntie Elaine, and took their comments at face value.

One of my regrets when my mother died was that I’d asked her so little about her family.  Her father, for instance, who’d died when she was 19.  He was one of 8 siblings born to a poor London family.  Alone among those siblings, he was educated,  a high-flyer at his Grammar school.  He won a scholarship to Cambridge, where he did exceptionally well, and became a parish priest.  What’s the story there?  I shall never know now.

My father too.  He came from Poland during World War II.  His family were well-to-do landowners at one point, but his father died when he was 12. Because his mother remarried and I don’t know what her new surname was, I have no means of tracing any family members there.

But there are leads I can follow, and I have started to do so.  My new blog will not be organised chronologically.  Rather I’ll tell tales as they occur to me and recount results of research when I have any successes.

And I also write another blog.  Earlier posts describe our day-to-day lives in France, in the small town where we lived.  More recent posts are about our redicovery of Yorkshire, our present home.  It’s called ‘From Pyrenees to Pennines‘ and you can find it here.

11 thoughts on “About

  1. Margaret, I’d like to send you the link to a film in the Pyrenées in the 90th HH just found by chance – and all the time of watching it on YTube, I said you’d surely like to watch it too. It’s in French, no subs, but I bet you understand it. Send me your email address please and I send you a private mail. Thanks.

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  2. Not sure if you’re still updating this blog Margaret but I’m addicted to family history so always find people’s stories interesting. My maiden name was Barton though that side of the family were all from Sussex and Kent. I’ve unearthed some fascinating stuff including quite a scandal on my late mum’s side (back in the 1860s) but have to be discreet as don’t want to upset anyone!

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    1. Funnily enough, I have a piece that I’m thinking of putting on this blog soon, but no, I won’t be updating very often. How fascinating that you and I shared a surname before marriage. One day, I’d love to know about That Scandal, but I can see that it might not be possible. You could fictionalise it? Change a few names?

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      1. That’s what my daughters think I should do! The Scandal would make a wonderful book!! I’d love to be able to tell the story – I’m thinking of reaching out to a 2nd cousin on that line to see if she’d be interested in knowing more but of course have to tread very carefully! For now I continue to gather as much information as I can.

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      2. Well it’s certainly a very interesting story and I did have some inklings about that line of the family from stories I’d heard from my late mum but not to the extent I uncovered. The wonders of modern DNA tests!

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