part of



Charlton - posted Dec 24, 1912
While not named this card was published by Blum & Degan Ltd circa 1904 (#10959)


This was sent as a Christmas card to the Misses W. & M. Lane, The White House, Fring, Kings Lynn, Norfolk by F. M. Holmes.

In the 1901 census Florence M. Holmes (18, born Newington, London) was living at 55 Walsworth Road, Hitchin, with her parents Samuel (65, retired baker) and Louisa (51).

The Misses Lane were presumably the daughters of William Alma Lane, farmer, of The White House, Fring.  [Kelly's directory for Norfolk, 1912]


Henry Bessemer, who, in the year 1872, received the Albert Gold Medal of the Society of Arts for improvements in the manufacture of steel, was born at Charlton, on the 19th of January, 1813. His father, Anthony Bessemer, was born in Old Broad Street, London, and at the age of eleven removed with his parents to Holland, where, nine years later, he erected the first steam-engine in that country for the purpose of draining the soil. The following year he settled in Paris, and having made great improvements in the microscope, was made a member of the Academy of Sciences at the early age of twenty-five. He remained in Paris until the Revolution, in which he lost his whole fortune, and escaped to London, where, by his great talents and untiring industry, he rapidly recovered his position and in the course of five or six years obtained sufficient to purchase a house and about a hundred acres of freehold land in Charlton. Among other arts to which Anthony Bessemer devoted his attention was type­ founding, in which he excelled. Here also :resided for a time the notorious Eugene Aram, executed for murder 6th August, 1759, who was tutor in a school at Church House.

The river Hiz rises at Wellhead, a little distance from Charlton, it flows through the Priory Park, and enters the town at the end of Sun Street, skirts the Priory of the Biggin not far from the church, crosses Port Mill Lane, and runs on to Grove Mill, where it joins the Pyrral. The town of Hitchin is supplied with water from a spring which rises in the Priory Park adjoining Charlton, the property of F. A. Delme-Radcliffe, Esq, and leased by him to the Urban District Council.

Handbook to Hitchin & the Neighbourhood, 1899

Charlton - Valentine's series posted 27 December 1905


This was sent as a Christmas card to Miss Le Fleming Shepherd, Mansfield House, Greevegate Road, Hunstanton, Norfolk, by F. M. Holmes [see above].

It was presumably addressed to a daughter of Richard Le Fleming Shepherd, M.B., C. M. Edingurgh, surgeon, Mansfield House, Greevegate Road. [Kelly's directory for Norfolk, 1904]

Same image - uncoloured - image numbered JV 38958 [1903] - published by M W Wakenell, Bookseller & Stationer, Hitchin.

CHARLTON, which forms part of the township of Hitchin, is three-quarters of a mile south from the town, but consists only of a few cottages and scattered farms. The mission and reading room, established here in 1893, was closed as such in 1895, and is now used as a Sunday school. The river Hiz rises at Wellhead, near Charlton, and runs through this locality and Hitchin.

Wall Letter Box, cleared at 8.30 am & 7 pm week days only.

Anderson George, farmer & miller (water)
Anderson George, furniture remover
Curling Robert S, farmer, Offley Holes
Hinstridge William, beer retailer
Scott & Midgley, poultry farmers, Temple End
Taylor Tobias William, Windmill P.H.
Throssell James, farmer, Wellhead

Kelly's Directory for Hertfordshire, 1914

In the 1895 Directory the following names were listed.

Chichester Col. Cornwallis H.
Anderson George, furniture remover
Curling Robert, farmer, Offley Holes
Histridge Henry, beer retailer
Kirkby Frederick, farm bailiff to Robert Curling, esq, Offley Holes
Morgan George, Windmill P.H.
Newman Arthur, shopkeeper
Thrussell Joseph, farmer
Walker James, farm bailiff to William Hill, Dog Kennell Farm

If you know of other books, websites, etc, relating to this place, please tell me.

June 2008   Page updated
July 2016   Uncoloured Valentine pc info added