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Notes on Beckwith Family Tree 3  

Generations 10 onwards  -  
Offspring of Thomas William Beckwith and Emily Gertrude Speaight 
(9.1 in Tree 2 Notes)


Surnames underlined are those which apply following marriage & carry through to following generation(s)


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Generation 10

Eric Thomas Beckwith - b 20th Jan 1891, died 1st Nov 1958. 

Eric was responsible for much of the early family history research work with Goldsmiths and, in a letter to them dated Feb 1951 he says that he had recently retired from "the executive establishment of the War Office". In a letter written by Nancy in Jan 1950 she mentions that Eric now had 'an easier job' as 'an Architect in the War Office'. 

Until WW1 he lived in the parental homes in the Hornsey and Crouch End areas. A keen runner and cyclist in his teens but also, like his sisters, Eric was a gifted musician, particularly as a pianist, Gilbert & Sullivan operettas being one of the regular favourites.

Eric married on 22nd June 1922 Winifred Gladys DEXTER b 10th Sep 1897, d 11th May 1986. She was the middle one of the three daughters of William Morton DEXTER (a clerk in an advertising agency b1873 in St Pancras) and Ellen Louisa MURPHY (b1875 in Islington), the other two being Aldrea Ellen (b1896) and Nellie (b1900). In the 1911 census - the first that householders completed themselves in their own fair hand - William lists his daughter as  'Winnie Dexter', the name by which she was later universally known in the family because both Eric and 1st cousin Gerald married Winifreds so there were two concurrent Winifred Beckwiths. (Aside - the spelling of 'Aldrea' in 1911 is quite clear but she appears as 'Aldred' in birth records.)

After Eric & Winnie's marriage, the family moved to 'Crantock', 47 Grimsdyke Crescent, Barnet, Hertfordshire (which Eric designed) and they remained there until Winnie's death in 1986. Why the Cornish house name? Son Roger explains ... "My father trained as an architect before he went into the army, and though he did not afterwards practise the profession because of the slump in house-building which followed the First World War, he himself designed the house in which we lived. He called it 'Crantock' because that was the name of the village in Cornwall where he and my mother spent their honeymoon.

They had 3 children - Una, Roger & Lorna - See 11-10.1 for details


Ailsa Gertrude Beckwith  - b 7th Sep 1897, died 18th July 1966

"A self-effacing and gentle personality, Ailsa was a devoted wife and mother. Although very frail in health, she always thought of others before herself and liked people, keeping in close touch with many friends and relatives as well as helping an assortment of "lame ducks". She was keenly interested in international affairs, strongly supporting the United Nations, peace movements and organisations for alleviating world poverty. Musically talented, she played the piano well and, in youth, the violin. The whole family were closely connected with Park Chapel Congregational Church in Crouch End, where she met her husband." (Margery Pears). I recall that her last years were spent at Whetstone (south of Barnet), Herts (MGS)

Married in Edmonton, Middx, on 6th Sep 1919 Frank BUTLER, b 9th March 1883 in Hastings, Sussex; died 7th April 1959

"Frank was educated at Tollington Park School, London N, where his father was headmaster. Following medical training at Charing Cross Hospital, he became a dental surgeon with a practice in the City which he ran for nearly 50 years, broken only by First World War service in the Middle East as a Medical Officer. A clever and artistic man of great originality and many parts. Extremely musical, he played the piano well and the trumpet to professional standard. Amongst his many interests were archaeology and history; he was an expert on English church architecture and church towers. Upon retirement he painted reproductions of old English church stained-glass windows, most of which are now held by the National Buildings Record for the benefit of students of stained-glass." (Margery Pears). 

The censuses bear out the earlier family background - in 1911 Frank is shown as a 29 yr old dentist, son of Edward Albert Butler (schoolmaster, born in Alton, Hants in 1845 but he is shown in 1891 specifically as 'Teacher Mathematics & Science; Author Entomology"). Frank's mother was Lucy PORTER, (born in 1852 in Madras, India, but educated at a 'school for ladies' in St Pancras thence lived with her widowed mother in Bedford). Edward & Lucy married in Sep qtr 1877 in Hastings, where Edward Butler was a schoolmaster at the "University Preparty Sch, Hastings Holy Trinity aka Priory" (sic) until the mid 1880's, hence Frank having been born there as well as his two elder sisters, Marguerite Lucy (b1879) and Constance Emily (b1881).

In 1891 & 1901, the family were at 39 Ashley Road, Islington (just off the south side of Crouch Hill, Crouch End) but by 1911 they had switched over to the north side of Crouch Hill - to 56 Cecile Park - which is in Hornsey borough, but still just a stone's throw from the Mountview Theatre in Crouch Hill. Also in the household are his two younger sisters who are both in their mid-20's - Edith Mary (b1884 in Holloway) and Grace ('School Secretary', b1885 also in Holloway) plus Beatrice Mary Fayers, a 20yr old servant from Suffolk. 

Writing in Nov 1945 about the effects of WW2 on various members of the family, Nancy says "Ailsa had her home blasted and her husband's surgery in Finsbury Square was destroyed. All his valuable instruments and equipment were destroyed. The dental chair cost over 200"

They had 3 children - Margery, Sheila & Michael - See 11-10.2 for details


Silvia Jessie Frances  Beckwith - b 8th Nov 1900, died 27th Sep 1961

"A singer (and singing teacher) with a fine soprano voice, Silvia mainly sang as soloist in major oritorios (notably the Messiah, Elijah and Merrie England) in North London churches and concert halls. She broadcast several radio recitals (9 o'clock Home Service mainly) both before and after the 1939-45 war whilst, during the war, she toured with ENSA entertaining hospital patients. Her premature death was attributable to a combination of a decline in singing engagements and the then recent deaths of both her husband and elder son.

In 3rd qtr1923 in the Edmonton registration district, Silvia married John Edward GABRIEL, b 1st Dec 1896 in Kentish Town, London NW; died 29th May 1960. John ('Jack') was the younger son of Frederick Gabriel (a 'Draper Shopkeeper' b1868 in Pilton, part of Barnstaple in Devon) and Mary Elizabeth HANCOCK (b1869 in the USA but a naturalised British subject) who had married in Barnstaple in Sep qtr 1894. How come Mary was born in Massachusetts when both her mother (Sarah Courtney BENHAM) and her father (John Nicholas HANCOCK) and all her younger siblings were born in or around Barnstaple ? 

Anyway, in 1901, when Jack Gabriel was 4, the family home was in Rathcoole Parade, 34 Tottenham Lane, Hornsey - presumably the draper's shop that they ran; the Rathcoole Parade part of Tottenham Lane is down on the 41's close to  Hornsey Railway Station. With him and his parents were his elder brother - Frederick George Gabriel (b1895) - and Mary's sister plus another member of the Hancock family from Devon as drapery assistants. By 1911 the family had moved to 17 Park Avenue South, Crouch End,  just across Priory Road from Silvia Beckwith & co, the Gabriel family comprising only Jack and his parents, his father now a 'cashier'.

"John, known to most people (except his mother!) as 'Jack', was a keen horseman and served during the 1914-18 war in the 16th Lancers. His very varied career included periods in furniture sales, property management, entertainment (serving with ENSA during the 1939-45 war and later being part-owner of a concert party), printer, gardener, and chauffer. At the time of his death he was a manufacturers' agent for a hardware company." (Desmond Gabriel (JDG))

Family home was latterly in Mill Hill, N London. They had 2 children - Alan and John Desmond - See 11-10.3 for details



Generation 11



Offspring of Eric Thomas Beckwith & Winifred Gladys Dexter (10.1)


Una Beckwith  - born 10th Sep 1925, died 24th July 1985 in Barnet, Herts. 

In a letter written by Nancy in 1945 she says Una "has gained a Science Scholarship at London University and is now at King's College".


Roger Thomas Beckwith - born 21st July 1929. Became an Anglican priest (officiating at Nancy's funeral near Worthing in 1956), latterly in Oxford. 

Married on 6th December 1958 Janette PULLIN, b 24th June 1939

Their 4 children are Johnathan Thomas, Paul, Simon Matthew and Sarah - See 12-11.2


Lorna  Beckwith - born 4th Feb 1931. Lived in Borehamwood (Herts) before moving in late 1980's to Abingdon, Berks where she died in 22nd June 2009.

On 1st Sep 1979, married William KELLAM, b 16th Nov 1905, died 1992


Offspring of Ailsa Gertrude Beckwith & Frank Butler (10.2)


Margery Constance Butler - b 16th Oct 1920, died 25 Jan 2017. "Educated at Seager House boarding school, Hayling Island. In Womens Land Army during WW2. Afterwards trained as a full-time youth leader and did youth work in London for some years then went back to secretarial and administrative work, mainly in social welfare and, finally, at Kent Music School in Maidstone. Interested in all the arts, particularly music." (Margery's own words). Since the 1950s the marital home was at Loose near Maidstone in Kent  but after being widowed, she travelled quite extensively with sister Sheila. Her last homes were near Ashford and finally Rochester. 'Peacefully passed away at Rochester Care Home on the 25th January 2017, aged 96 years.'

On 6th May 1944, married Andrew PEARS, b 13th Oct 1911, died 10th Jan 1975. "The youngest son of Charles Pears, the marine painter, who was the first president of the Society of Marine Artists. Andrew's working life was much handicapped by frail health, but he had a great love of writing reading and music." (Margery Pears)


Dorothy Sheila Butler ('Sheila') - b 26th Sep 1922, died 2012 near Maidstone, Kent. 

"Educated at Tollington High School. Drama training at Central School of Speech Training and Dramatic Art - acted in repertory for some years. Then trained as a teacher of mentally handicapped and Montessori training - taught children at first then transferred to the Adult Centre for the Handicapped in Barnet, Herts. Interested in all the arts, particularly alternative healing therapy and, until her move to Kent, she was a member of the Healing Group in Hendon." (Margery Pears)


Michael Butler - b 21st Jan 1924, died 16th August 2013 in Broadstairs. 

"Educated at Tollington School and Bishops Stortford College. Medical training at St Mary's Hospital, London." Following the family move to Broadstairs in the late 1950's, was "Consultant General Surgeon at Thanet District Hospital for 30 years and much respected for his skill, kindness and dedication. Keen on all sports, particularly sailing and skiing as well as gardening and music - became chairman of Thanet Festival Choir." (Margery Pears)

On 31st May 1947 married Marjorie PARSONS, b 2nd March 1921, whose family originates from Port Isaac in Cornwall  "She served as a JP at Ramsgate Magistrates Court and was a member of Thanet Festival Choir and Ramsgate Operatic Society where she sang a number of solo parts." (Margery Pears). Marjorie died in Spring 2015 in Broadstairs.

They had two children - for details see 12-11.13


Offspring of Jack & Silvia Gabriel (10.3)
(Silvia Jessie Frances Beckwith & John Edward Gabriel)  


Alan Gabriel - born 1st June 1927, died 10th Jan 1957 in Mill Hill, N London.

"He developed a keen interest in acting and the theatre at an early age, joining the Italia Conti Stage School and taking part in many productions of their traditional show 'When the Rainbow Ends'. He too toured with ENSA towards the end of the war, working with Donald Wolfitt (RSC) and in 'Thunder Rock' with Noel Johnson (later the BBC's 'Dick Barton - special agent'). When 'resting' he worked in shoe retailing then, in his mid-twenties, he moved into retail management. A keen churchman and Sunday School teacher, he was engaged to marry a fellow teacher at the time of his sudden death from polio." (JDG)


John Desmond Gabriel ('Desmond') - born 28th May 1929. Died 1991.

On 30th March 1963 in Orpington, Kent, married Thelma Patricia WILSON, b 8th Dec 1937.

"Desmond inherited his mother's love of music and singing talent. In 1938 he became a chorister at Westminster Abbey then, when that choir was disbanded due to the war, transferred to the choir of New College Oxford in which he sang as a treble solo during the regularly broadcast Choral Evensong. After leaving Magdalen College School (1943-1948), where he was latterly Head Boy, he was commissioned in the RAEC on National Service. In 1949 he won a scholarship to Magdalen College, Oxford. 

Following three years as a preparatory school teacher (1952-1955) and a flirtation with the professional theatre in musical comedy and pantomime, he began a 25 year career in 1961 with the London County Council's Education dept (latterly the ILEA) as a Youth Employment Officer/Careers Officer.

After Bromley Girls Grammar School (where she was head girl), Thelma trained then worked as an SRN at Guy's Hospital until marriage in 1963. Her recurring back trouble required major surgery in the early 1970's but she continued for a while to play an active part in church life (as a Sunday School Supt and committee chairman) as well as work voluntarily for Beckenham Citizens' Advice Bureau until precluded by the progressive worsening of her back condition" (JDG)

The couple had three children - Alison and twins John & Richard (see 12-11.22 for details) - and spent their married life in the Bromley/Beckenham area of West Kent. Thelma has since re-married (Michael MILLER) and more recently moved to Seaford in Sussex.


Generation 12



Offspring of Roger Thomas Beckwith & Janette Pullin (11.2)


Jonathan Thomas Beckwith  - born 28th March 1961. 

On March 22nd 1997, he married Jane BEADLE and they have two children - Joseph Thomas b1998 and Luke Anthony b2000


Paul  Beckwith - b 12th March 1963. Lives in Winslow Bucks.

On 18th April 1987, he married Susan Jane CROSSGROVE, an opthalmic optician. They have three children - Thomas Mark, b 9th April 1991, Katherine Lucy, b1993 and Emily Clare, b 18th Jan 1995.


Simon Matthew Beckwith  - b 21st Sep 1965. Obtained a degree in Law thence, c1990, his Masters degree.

He married Julie THOMPSON. 


Sarah Beckwith  - b 31st Dec 1967. She trained as a nurse in Brighton (see item under Nancy Beckwith in Tree 2 notes) and became a fully-fledged staff nurse in 1991.

She married Stephen JONES and they have two children - Maisie Elizabeth b1994 and Eleanor Catherine, born in Brighton on 6th September 1996


Offspring of Michael Butler and Marjorie Parsons (11.13)


Christopher Michael Butler - born 13th July 1952. Educated at St Lawrence College in Ramsgate then medical training at Westminster Hospital, he followed his father into surgery and achieved Master of Surgery in 1985. 

On 15th May 1976, married Hilary BADGER, born 12th August 1952. 

They have two children. 


Nigel Butler - born 10th June 1956. Also educated at St Lawrence College in Ramsgate followed by medical training at Westminster Hospital, he too entered the medical profession becoming a GP in Essex. 

On 12th July 1980, married Julia O'KELLY, born 18th April 1957. 

They have five children.


Offspring of John Desmond Gabriel and Thelma Wilson (11.22)


Alison Frances Gabriel - b 24th March 1964

"Continued the family's musical tradition by showing early competence as a violinist, winning a Junior Exhibition at the Royal College of Music and becoming a leading violinist with Bromley Schools Symphony Orchestra. Following school and initial training as an SRN at Guy's, she is currently training in social work as part of a Social Sciences degree course at Middlesex Poly." (JDG - 1987)


John Gabriel - b 24th Nov 1966 (twins)

"Became head boy at Ravensbourne School for Boys - now studying for B.Sc in Management and Administration Studies at Aston." (JDG - 1987)


Richard Gabriel -  b 24th Nov 1966 (twins)

"Became a prefect at the same school as his twin brother - now studying for B.Sc in Management Sciences at Warwick" (JDG - 1987)

In 2003, married Fiona GIBBONS (b1969) and they have one child, Kyle Aidan John (b 6th August 2006) 

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Last updated 8th Oct 2020