Family move from Tunbridge Wells, Kent to Ashby de a Zouch, Leicestershire

+5 votes

My Great Granfather, John Mackellow, his wife and most of thier children up-sticks from Kent and moved to the town of Ashby de la Zouch in North West Leicestershire sometime between the 1871 census and the death of my Great Grandmother in 1876.

I have no idea why they moved (although thier 2 sons died very young not long beofrehand) or why they chose this particular destination. 

Does anyone know of a trend in movement about this time?  John was a cabinet maker & upholsterer for most of his life, although in 1871 the census also lists him as a ginger beer manufacturer.

All ideas and suggestions welcome smiley

WikiTree profile: Minnie Smith
asked in Genealogy Help by Alison Wilkins G2G6 Mach 2 (24.5k points)
Did you ever figure out the connection between Tunbridge Wells and Ashby de la Zouch? I would be interested to know!
Hi Iain, nothing yet.... got a bit distracted by another branch of the tree.  I think at least one of the family was only in Ashby for one census and ended up in Bradford
might be coincidental but in 1870 there was a furniture maker (Elliott) declared bankrupt in Ashby de la Zouch. Maybe your ancestor bought the business? Ashby at the time was also a growing spa town where people went for the healing waters. It had good rail links, hotels and a grammar school. At the time it was the biggest town in NW leics.

3 Answers

+3 votes
Best answer
Hi there. The first railways to Tonbridge came in 1842. Strangely that`s about the time my family upped sticks from Tonbidge / tunbridge Wells and moved to south London presumably for the work ! To ge Ashby de la Zouch wouldn`t take much more than a day. It`s about 130 miles.

answered by Steven Mitchell G2G1 (1.4k points)
selected by Alison Wilkins
Thanks Steven, I'm still digging and looking for either a "push" from Kent or a "pull" to Leicestershire.

The eldest child of the family (assuming I'm following the correct person through the censuses) went into service in Reading, Berkshire rather than travel with the rest of the family. It's a long-ish way round but Reading could've been on the  jouney route.
+2 votes
Early travel difficult,horse and wagon went abt 10 miles an hour in a straight line,

But at that time dirt roads twisted and turned,not well manetained,might

have to go 15 miles to go 10 in a straight lines,Not sure if railroads were in use then

Leicestershire to kent ,iwould guess about 100 miles.

In 1851 Census John MacKellow age 15 born abt 1836, Father John MacKellow

Mother Ann MacKellow,Tonbridge,Kent England.So here is one born in Kent.
answered by Wayne Morgan G2G6 Pilot (802k points)
Thanks Wayne, even if they managed 10 miles an hour for the entire journey - i guess you're still looking at a couple of days.  Puts the persepective on how big a deal it would have been. Google reackons by today's motorway network its either 160 or 180 miles (going around London) and will take about 3 hours.... by rail would be closer to 5 hours with 3 different trains and then a bus journey, an we think of that as a trek! Oh how times have changed :)
+1 vote
There was a financial depression between 1873 and 1896 so maybe the move was work related.
answered by Gillian Causier G2G6 Pilot (168k points)

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