Dickie Fish and his wife, Circa 1935
MANY of our older readers will remember 'Dickie Fish's Orchard' which was situated at Fieldside, Thorne, now the site of the flats and formerly part of the lands of Thorne Hall.
Thorne Hall is featured in this year's Old Thorne Calendar and 'Dickie Fish's Orchard' is mentioned in the caption. One of these calendars was sent to Oxfordshire to the great grandson of Dickie Fish, Mr. Brian Lewis 'by his sister Carole Healey who lives in Thorne. As a result he has told us a little bit of the family's history.
The picture right is of Dickie Fish and his wife (Great Grandma Fish), it was taken about 1935 in Lock Lane. Mrs. Fish prior to marrying Dickie had had an interesting life.
Her first husband was William Glassby, Station Master at Crowle in the 1870's/80's. She met him when arriving on the last train of the day. He offered to walk her home and eventually they married. Unfortunately she was so unhappy, that she ran away, throwing her wedding ring over a hedge, they had no children.
She, then lived with, but never married, William Travis, they had seven children. Mr. Travis died around 1893 leaving Great Grandma so destitute that she went into Thorne Workhouse in Union Road as a cook. Her children were brought up as workhouse children and apparently allowed very little contact with their mother: On one occasion a supervisor tried to stop great-grandma from going to help her daughter who was limping badly. Gran insisted and found a boot button had lodged between her ankle bone and the inside of her boot. She left the Workhouse when she married Dickie Fish in 1898.
The wedding of Amelia Glassby and Mr. Wraith, 1915
In 1915 Great Grandma Fish's daughter, Amelia and William Wraith of Moorends.
(the wedding - party are pictured left)
The bride and groom are seated in the middle. Great Grandma Fish is seated on the right. One of her daughters, Zilla, was married to Maurice Keighley pictured stood 3rd and 4th from left.
Unfortunately Maurice Keighley, who came from Bramley, Leeds was to die three years later. He served in France in the 1914-18 war and although he survived the fighting, he died on 13th November, two days after peace was declared and one day after his 30th birthday from the flu epidemic which killed tens of thousands of servicemen. At the time of his death his wife was living in Lock Lane with her mother and Dickie.
Mr. & Mrs. Maurice Keighley and their
daughter, Dorothy, Circa 1916
When the Thorne postmaster received the telegram from-the War Office advising her of his death, he realised the shock this would be because there had been no hint that he had been ill. To soften the blow the kindly postmaster wrote out a false telegram saying that Private Keighley was very ill, delivering this to her. Several hours later he delivered the original telegram. It seems Mrs Keighley, (Mr. Lewis's grandmother), was so distraught she had to be stopped from throwing herself in Thorne canal.
Thorne Peace Celebrations, 19th July, 1919.
The gentleman on the extreme right in the wedding picture is Harry Glassby. He was a milk roundsman who eventually sold his business which became part of Oates Dairy with premises at the Old Mill on North Eastern Road.
Mr. Lewis's mum Dorothy Keighley is pictured in 1919 at the Thorne Peace Celebrations. She is the sixth from the left with the flag held down with cousin Jessie on her right. The cart has N.E.R. Co., Thorne painted on it.
Shortly after this photograph was taken she went to live at Warping Drain Cottages, Goole Road, which meant Dorothy walked three miles to school each day. She was to marry Stanley Lewis a miner, living in Moorends until she died in 1995.
N.B. - The man seen during the 1940's and 50's scything the grass in `Dickie Fish's Orchard' was known as Harry `Cuckoo' Holgate.
Amended copy April 2005 by Brian Lewis
Brian Lewis-would be glad to hear from anyone who has knowledge of any of the people mentioned.
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