Another Reverend Bids Filey Farewell

Ten years ago I wrote a lengthy article on the Reverend Basil Kilvington WOODD for Looking at Filey. There is a mercifully shorter Redux piece under the imaginative title Reverend B K Woodd here. Two items in the Scarborough Mercury of 17 January 1880 may be of interest.


A meeting was held in the School-room, on Friday evening, chiefly composed of the Sunday-school children, their parents and friends. The Rev. B. K. Woodd, the late vicar, said when he came to Filey six years ago there was no Sunday-school, but he was glad to say that so far his efforts, assisted by his wife, who had gone all over the parish seeking up the children, had been crowned with success, and he hoped that the good work they had begun would be carried forward by his successor, and that all children would attend school as usual. He thanked the many friends who had so ably assisted in the school, for if it had not been for their kind assistance his efforts would have been to no avail. Recitations, scripture passages, songs, &c., were then given by the children in capital style. Mrs. Woodd then distributed prizes to the children, according to merit, for attendance, behaviour, and intelligence. The Benediction was then pronounced by Mr. Woodd, whereupon Mr. R. Cammish ascended the platform accompanied by Mr. Harrison, and uncovered a beautiful encased clock with elaborate ornaments and also a silver ink-stand, which he said had been subscribed for by the parishoners of Filey, as a token of their esteem for the vicar and his wife. Mr. Harrison then made the presentation, remarking that during the six years Mr. Woodd had officiated at Filey he had made most praiseworthy progress in the arrangements at the church and all local matters that he had to do with. Mr. Woodd responded, saying that they had acknowledged their humble services far more than they deserved. He and his family would ever remember the kindness they had been shown to them during their short stay among them, and would value their handsome gifts as long as they lived. The meeting was dispersed.


On Sunday the Rev. B. K. Woodd preached two farewell sermons to his parishioners in the parish church. Towards the conclusion of the morning sermon, he said that [his time in the] parish was fast drawing to a close, and he prayed that God’s blessing might remain amongst them. In the evening the church was crowded to overflowing, and at the end of the sermon, the vicar said: -My dear parishioners and friends, I beg to call your attention to the close of my ministry here tonight. Such a time cannot be referred to without a certain amount of feeling. I have not sought the new living I am going to, neither have I had any selfish motives in accepting it. If my preaching in this parish has been the means of sowing good seeds, I hope they will take root and bear fruit. Many sermons have been preached within these grand old walls that have stood for 700 years. God grant that many have been blessed by them. I go forward with this consolation, that I have tried to do my duty, and trust that you will follow me with your prayers to carry out my mission of love for which Jesus died. I trust that God’s blessing may rest with you, brightening your paths, and filling you with His heavenly love and grace until this life is over.

Find Rev. Basil on the Shared Tree.


1866 · Robert IRELAND · G8Z8-X55

An infant with this name died in Scarborough before his first birthday but “our Robert” appears in the 1871 census with his parents, two sisters and brother Harrison. After that, I lose them. (Father Gibbon is Gibson in some sources and mother Sarah‘s maiden name in birth registrations is “McNee” rather than McKee.)

1801 · Jane LEGARD · KH2X-MM3

Jane was born at Ganton, ten miles inland from Filey, when her uncle John was the sixth of the LEGARD baronets. The daughter of Digby Legard and Frances CREYKE, she married the second son of William WILBERFORCE, four years after the great man’s death. She died childless in 1854. Her husband, the Reverend Robert Isaac Wilberforce, died three years later in Italy. Robert first married a Hunmanby WRANGHAM – and so did his granddaughter Evelyn Agnes. The Wilberforce line comes to an end whilst the Wranghams continue to the 21st century. There may be family connections to Filey but, so far, I haven’t noticed any.

1809 · Francis COLLEY · MGCB-22G & Mary COLLEY

Francis and Mary are not related by blood. They married in St Oswald’s when Mary was thirty and Francis about six years younger. I have nine children born to them, the last two not reaching their first birthday, when Mary was 45/47 years old. FamilySearch has a tenth child, a second Jane born in 1813.

1973 · Mary Ethel HALL · 1939 Cammish E111

Wife of James “Fatty” Cammish and grandmother of Martin Douglas, who kindly donated the photograph below to Looking at Filey.

Mary Ethel with Martin and Helen

1851 · Nathaniel COOK

Born in 1758, he was still working as a school teacher in 1841, living in Church Street with his wife Ann née TINDALL. He is the maternal grandfather of Elizabeth CHEW, who drowned with her husband William AGAR on passage from London to Shields in 1839. (See Anniversaries, 7 January.) Not yet found on the Shared Tree.


1975 Oxford


…A series of TV programmes, Pioneers of Photography, began last night with Fox Talbot. Very enjoyable considering my almost total lack of interest in “early” photographers. But, yesterday, I went to visit Dan in his daytime hell, Beaver House, and among the books he offloaded onto me was Famous Men and Fair Women, a badly water damaged collection of Julia Margaret Cameron’s photographs. The pictures themselves are unharmed except for a slight damp wrinkle. It is the white borders that have suffered. I might be able to rescue all the plates and put them against fresh, unsullied backgrounds. Worth the effort despite my lack of interest?

Dan has not been feeling well lately and has stopped talking to everyone. His sister thinks she has cancer of the bladder and Jumbo has been awful recently. Dan hit him on Sunday with a plastic bucket and the poor old chap cried over the sink “What did you do that for?” No one sits in my old chair next to Dan. “I am avoided.”

Beach 154 · Filey Sands

More Colley Wobbles

And another contrary Mary.

Francis COLLEY, born in Folkton in 1785, is not related by blood to young Jane LUNDY, the supposed descendant of Boudicca. He had at least nine children with Mary, born Colley, who was also not related to him by blood. All the children entered the world in Filey but on the FamilySearch Shared Tree they had, until yesterday, some younger siblings who were born in Sheffield. Mother Mary would have been sixty-years-old or thereabouts when she gave birth to the last of them.

My breakfast reading at the moment is A Measure of Darkness, by Jonathan & Jesse Kellerman, and this morning I read about the discovery of a dozen credit cards found on the corpse of a Jane Doe. A different name on each card. Clay, our resourceful narrator, begins to search for the owners of the stolen, cloned or faked cards. He opines…

Without a second data point, a name is close to meaningless.

The FamilySearch ‘system’ had a Mary, married to Francis Colley, as the mother on a bunch of christening records. For each, they had another data point – the christening place – but this was ignored. So Filey Mary and Sheffield Mary were treated as one.

I looked for the Sheffield mother’s birth family name and decided it was COCKAYNE. Foolishly, I attached this detail to Sheffield Mary and thereby gave several instances of her Filey counterpart the surname Cockayne. (Both women had several IDs, one for each christening source.)

It took a while to clear up my mess but I think I have left the Sheffield Colleys in reasonable shape. There are some issues that still need to be addressed. Search in Records on FST for Mary Cockayne, born Sheffield in 1800 and the top hit currently shows William Cockayne and Betty as her parents. Clicking on her tree icon returns Filey’s Mary Colley. Mary Cockayne has a different ID and one possible duplicate for a Maria Colley. I don’t know how to fix this bizarre glitch.

If you have linked to the Sheffield Colleys on FST, you will see there are few sources given for the family. Harriet had been given a precise birthdate in 1848, without a source. I have added the GRO registration for 1840. This Harriet did not die in infancy. She went on to marry and is aged 60 in the 1901 census. (She married Marriott HALL on 11 June 1863. On the same day, in the same place, her sister Emily married Leonard COOKE.)

The apparent firstborn, Francis William, has a christening source but awaits his bride, Sarah BANKS (possibly MP6P-BVS). The marriage took place in 1857 when Francis William and Jonathan worked in their father’s Leather business. Francis senior employed 11 men in 1851 and the firm advertised a number of times for journeymen curriers over the next ten years. But in 1861 the father is listed in the census as “Out of Business”. Jonathan remains in the family home, aged 28 and unmarried, described as a Leather Dealer. A bit more research revealed that the partnership of father and two sons was dissolved by mutual consent on the last day of 1859. Jonathan continued to run the company under its original name, Francis Colley & Sons.

In the 1850s, Francis senior’s name appears a number of times in the local newspapers, sometimes twinned with that of his brother in law. In the Election for Sheffield Guardians in 1857, Thomas Bagshaw Cockayne came ninth in the race and Francis tenth. Both just missed out, as because only eight Guardians were elected. Twelve years later, both men were re-elected as Directors of the Sheffield Waterworks Company.

Returning to the coast and the other Francis and Mary. Six of their nine known children died in infancy. Although Filey Genealogy & Connections denies a blood relationship, the marriage record shows they were from the same parish. Love is perhaps blind to the size of gene pools. The three that survived childhood married. I don’t think I have all the offspring of these unions yet: five to John Colley and Martha PRETTY, and two to Jane (the second) and Robert Benjamin FOWLER. It seems that Robert Colley and Betsy HARPER, marrying in their mid-forties, left it too late to start a family.

Today’s Image

I don’t have a picture to illustrate the Colley story, but I offer a Glamour shot instead. The white glint on the horizon of the Filey Sands photo is the Vos Glamour. She looks somewhat raddled – handheld in poor light with the point and shoot at max zoom. Plenty of pictures online though – and I found this short YT video mesmerising. Oddly, Ship AIS had her down as a Passenger/Ferry. Fake Shipping News.