Monday, 13 April 2015

The Vestry Door

A photograph I took at the Church of St Michael, Flixton. A pretty, ancient, Church on a rise of land overlooking the water meadows of the Mersey river towards Cheshire. As is often the case with such an old edifice, there are stories of secret passages down to the river and interesting anecdotes of time gone by, so I wnted to convey that look, if I could, with this picture. The scrapbook page was made with CrarftArtist just using the photo effects, brushes and shapes within the program.

Monday, 6 April 2015

Easter Sunday at Alderley

It's a long time since I last posted to my Bloggs. Life takes over, but perhaps it's time to catch up.

Yesterday we went to the Church of St Mary, Alderley (Cheshire) as it was the beginning of their 'open' season for visitors to the Church, informal, and informative, guided tours are always available and we enjoy stopping by for a chat. This was where the search for our Salthouse family began as we discovered that my great great grandparents, John Salthouse and Lucy Walters, were married there on 31st March 1842. Yesterday the daffodils on Church Lane were catching the son and looked so beautiful; inside the Church was filled with light from the chandeliers and the sun pouring through the clerestory windows, lighting up the floral arrangements all around the Church.

Sunday, 13 November 2011

Bill Belton, 62 Squadron RAF

This is the formal picture of my father when he joined the Volunteer Regiment of the RAF as an armourer (he was younger than the conscription age when he volunteered). After a period of training he joined 62 Squadron and sailed out to Singapore. He escaped Singapore on the last plane and later escaped Sumatra on on old Dutch cargo ship which only made the journey to Ceylon safely because the Captain disobeyed orders and steered a different course to safety. My father then became seriously will with rheumatic fever and spent some months in a mountain hospital at the foot of the Himalayas before returning home. Despite all the danger that he had been in, he enjoyed his time in the RAF and tried to rejoin after the war but the cost of going to London for an interview was prohibitive at the time.

This picture can also be viewed more clearly at

Tuesday, 9 February 2010

William Salthouse

As part of the fun of being part of the DaisyTrail community, the winner of the weekly challenge receives a gift of a mini-kit from two of the other members. I have used the kit to showcase a recently discovered picture of my great grandfather, William Salthouse.

I would guess that this picture of William Salthouse was taken between 1900 and 1912. It shows a successful businessman, well clothed and well presented. William Salthouse was born at Soss Moss Farmhouse in the Cheshire village of Nether Alderley in 1845. His father, John Salthouse, was a master boot and shoemaker and also a smallholder. Gardening and smallholding was very much the natural way of life in Cheshire villages in the mid 19th century and many young men found work of that kind on the Stanley estate. A surprising number of young men made a different choice - to join the police force.
When William first left home he went to Birkenhead where he worked for a nurseryman but, as soon as he was old enough, he applied to join the Lancashire police force. His application was successful and he was posted to Kirkdale in Liverpool. His police records show that he was a diligent constable and when he asked his superior for permission to marry Janet Braidwood, permission was granted. William and Janet were married in 1871. At about that time, William and another constable were sent on plain clothes duty to try and apprehend some notorious and violent burglars who were terrorising residents of the larger houses in the area. William noticed a light in a house and, on investigation, discovered the burglars. A fight ensued between him and both burglars, with both William Salthouse and one of the burglars being badly injured before help finally arrived. The burglars were arrested and charged. The residents were so relieved to be saved from these criminals that they arranged a collection for William, and he was awarded the sum of £25.
Shortly afterwards, William Salthouse left the police force in order to "enter into business on his own account". I have never discovered the name of the business and, in the census returns, William is described as an employee. But by the manner of his appearance in this photograph and from the stories handed down, it is likely that William Salthouse may have bought into a business as a partner.
(C) Hilary Belton 2010

Olga Bahler

Last week's challenge on DaisyTrail was to scrap a vintage photograph or picture add to add a title, but no journalling. I chose a favourite picture of mine, three sisters from Switzerland, one of whom - Olga Bahler - married my Uncle Ernest. And this week, my scrapbook page was chosen as the winner. Here it is:

Olga Bahler, I am told, was a very clever lady. She could speak four languages fluently. She met my grandmother, Edith Davies Williams, whilst they were both working in service in Ireland. When Edith (and another friend) decided to return to North Wales, Olga returned with them. That is how a beautiful lady from Switzerland came to meet and marry Ernest Davies Williams at Minera in Denbighshire.

(C) Hilary Belton 2010

Wednesday, 20 January 2010

The Great Great Aunts of Alderley

Today's scrap page features two wonderfully regal-looking ladies of the Salthouse family of Alderley (Nether Alderley in Cheshire). The Salthouse surname disappeared from the village in 1906 when another of the sisters, Annie Salthouse, died. I'll introduce you to Annie later.

These two great great aunts were sisters; before they married their names were Sophia Salthouse (on the left) and Lucy Salthouse. Sophia, born in 1842, was the first child of John Salthouse, a master boot and shoemaker, and Lucy Walters, of Nether Alderley. Lucy was the 10th and penultimate child of the family and was born in 1859. Sophia married Francis Worth in 1865 and Lucy married Edward Potts in 1896.

This photograph was taken in the spring of 1910 and records the wedding of Sophia's daughter, Sarah Ellen Worth, to William Henry Adshead. The wedding took place in the village Curch of St Mary and the wedding party was photographed on the swathe of green just outside Park Lodge, Alderley.

Sophia Salthouse was widowed by this time but still working as a laundress, mainly on her own account. No doubt she obtained much of her work from the Hall, but the Parish records also show that she was employed regularly to launder the choir's surplices.

Sarah Ellen Adshead, to give her married name, probably had a life that was quite different from that of her mother. Just one year after her marriage, the couple were living in a red brick terraced house in the nearby town of Stockport and her husband was employed as a foreman hatter - Stockport being famous for the manufacture of hats.

If you drive past Park Lodge today, on the road to Monks Heath, the road passes at the back of the Lodge whereas, in the days of Lord Stanley of Alderley, all vehicular traffic to Lord Stanley's residence would have stopped at the front of the Lodge for the gate to be opened. This postcard is a reasonable representation of how the road from Nether Alderley to Monks Heath would have looked when Sarah married William.

(C) Hilary Belton 2010

Sunday, 17 January 2010

Dad With Bella

This is a scrapbook page of my father, William Arthur Belton, more usually known as Bill, as a young man. He is photographed sitting in a deck chair and making a fuss of his dog, Bella, in the garden of the family home at 17 Wesley Road, Bwlchgwyn.

The original photo, inset, shows them sitting at the bottom of the garden; at the other side of the garden wall the land fell quite sharply down to the main road and the Hwntw public house before falling even further to the beautiful Nanat-y-Ffrith valley and rising again to form the Penllyn mountain. In those days (probably c1939) there were very few trees in Bwlchgwyn and the summit of Penllyn mountain would have been carpeted in purple heathers in the summer.

To create this page I have added a more recent photograph of the view from the garden; as this was photographed from the War Memorial on the hairpin bend the angle is slightly different and the Penllyn can now be seen - covered by a forestry commission plantation.

(C) Hilary Belton 2010