Fred Anstee (FL 14)

See ‘Anstey: A Complete History From the Norman Invasion to World War One‘ for much more on the Flamstead Anstees. In addition to biographies of various Anstey individuals who make up this sub-branch, the book contains a plethora of Anstey research and statistics, including an analysis of how the Flamstead Anstees fit into the pedigree descendent from Hubert de Anesti, the 12th century originator of the ‘Anstey’ surname.

FL 14. Fred Anstee: He was born in 1875 in Luton, baptised 28 April 1881 in Luton, to father Daniel Anstee (FL 6). He married Annie Elizabeth Foster in 1896 in Luton and they had children in Luton: 

  • Hilda Annie Anstee (b 1898 to mother ‘Foster’, living with her mother in 1911 – see below); 
  • Frederick Charles Anstee (FL 29 – b 1899, served during World War One); 
  • Percy William Anstee (b 1905 to mother ‘Forster’, living with his father in 1911 and 1921 – see below. The ‘Luton Reporter‘ 02 October 1916 reported “It seems that shortly after six o’clock on Friday evening a party of lads had got over the wall into Stockwood Park from Farley Hill in search of chestnuts and while one of them, a twelve year old lad named Percy Wm Anstee, son of Fredk Anstee, a blockmaker residing at 24, Milton-road, was sitting on the wall near the pond just past Farley Farm, he saw something in the water which caused him to say to one of his mates, “Look at that piece of rag in the pond.” On a closer examination they discovered to their surprise that it was the body of a man clad in khaki uniform. Greatly alarmed, they made a hurried exit, and Anstee made his way to the police station, and informed Insp, Hagley of the discovery. Inspector James and P.c David parsons thereupon proceeded to the spot, and with the aid of a cord got the body out of the water. There were no signs of life…“. The ‘Luton News and Bedfordshire Chronicle‘ 10 May 1917 reported “Luton Women Warned. Stolen Goods Sold at Back Doors. Pictures on the Proceeds. Yesterday a large number of women were spoken to severely by the Mayor at the Luton Borough Court for having bought stolen goods from boys. Percy Anstee, aged 12, of 24, Milton-road, and Fredk. Cook, aged 15, of Dorset-street, were charged with stealing quantity of soap, soda, polish,etc.. value 6s 10d., the property or Sophia Morris, of 15, Clifton-road, on Monday. Chief Constable Griffin outlined the procedure of the boys, and added that the women were called to give evidence it desired, but essentially for the Bench to inquire into their questionable actions. Mrs. Morris stated that she bought one or two dozen of various articles, Value 6s 10d. They were put in a box, and she saw the boy Anstee and gave him 9d to take them to her address. He told her he lived Anstee’s father appeared and said the boy seemed to unable to keep his hands of anything. The Chief Constable said the boy was committed to an industrial school in 1913 under the Education Act. Although not convicted before, he was a bad boy, and father said he had no control. The Mayor told the father that it was not all the boy’s fault. The home training had not been much good. The father replied that the boy had no mother to look after him. The Mayor: Where is his mother?— I dont know. Anstee added that the boy was all right until he got on his own: He had stolen the rent money on one occasion. In reply to the clerk, Anstee said he did not thrash the boy for it. Mr. Austin suggested that the boy should be birched, and the father should see it done. Anstee was ordered to receive six strokes of the birch, and the father to pay 17s, 6d. costs. The Mayor declared that it was lack of parental control that had brought the boy into this position, and it had probably been going on for some time. If Anstee came up again he would be dealt with very seriously. In Cook’s case the Bench conferred with Mr. Hawkes, the Court Missionary, who agreed to try and get the boy a job in good control. The mother was bound over for six months to bring the boy, up if called upon.“ – see also below for July 1917 article); and 
  • Claud Harold Anstee (b 1908 to mother ‘Foster’, living with his mother in 1911 – see below).

In the 1901 Census he was a straw hat blocker living with his family (including Annie Elizabeth) at 67, Hastings Street, Luton. In around 1908 or so Fred and Annie must have divorced (or split up) because in the 1911 Census he (still a straw hat blocker) was living at 24 Milton Road Luton with a ‘new’ wife Ellen Mary Anstee (b 1876 Luton – the 1911 Census says they married in 1898? and had 2 children? which cannot be correct – we cannot locate any marriage) and two of his ‘Anstee’ children Frederick (FL 29) and Percy. His ‘wife’ Annie Elizabeth remarried Frederick William Turvey in 1908 (per the 1911 Census, we cannot locate that marriage) and was living with him at 34 Gee Street EC, St Luke, London in the 1911 Census with the other two ‘Anstee’ children Hilda and Claud.

In 1917 he was “a straw hat blocker employed at Burley’s, … separated from his wife and living with another woman” per an article in the ‘Luton Reporter‘ 16 July 1917 which reported “The conduct of a father and a young milk. man came in for severe criticism at Luton Borough Sessions on Wednesday, in connection with the theft by Percy Wm. Anstee, aged 12, 24, Milton-road, of a bicycle valued at £3 belonging to Albert Hull, cycle agent and, bootmaker 29, Dumfries-street. Anstee called at Hull’s premises between ten o’clock and half-past ten on Friday morning and asked Mrs. Hull if he could have a bicycle for ten minutes or a quarter of an hour to go to Dunstable-road as his grandmother was ill. Mrs. Hull acceded to his request and told him to také one, but he did not return with the machine, and next day information was given to the police. When asked about the bicycle by Det.-Sub-Insp. Attwood on Sunday accused said he ran into a tree and buckled the wheel while riding to Harpenden and in consequence he threw the machine and left it there. Investigation of this story failed to recovery of the bicycle from herbert thompson, milkman 8, Brache street. Harry Golbey, 25, Woodstreet stated that about half past twelve on Friday, Anstee asked him and his brother if they knew anybody who wanted to buy a bicycle, and they told him Thompson might like to buy it. They spoke to Thompson about the matter, and later in the day he asked them if they knew where he could find Anstee. Witness went out to look for him, and just as he got out of the yard Anstee rode by with another boy. Witness called to him to stop and he did so, and took the bicycle into the yard where Thompson was, and Thompson purchased the machine. He gave Anstee 14s. in coppers for it and Anstee gave him back a shilling of which witness received sixpence. Anstee was stated to have attended the Dunstable-road school up to the age of ten years, when he was sent to a reformatory school where “he “spent eighteen months. In May last he received six strokes of the birch and his father was ordered to pay 17s. 6d costs, in respect of the theft of a quantity of soap and other household articles which the lad was paid to take home from the market for someone and converted to his own use, and the Chief Constable said the father, a straw hat blocker employed at Burley’s, complained that he could not control the lad, but his own view was that the father took no interest in the lad and was absolutely unfit to look after him. There had been continued reports about the lad sleeping out at night and never in one single instance had a report come from the father who was separated from his wife and living with another woman. The Mayor agreed that it looked as if the father was unfitted to look after the lad. and said it was scandalous. The boy looked a respectable lad, and might have been made a decent lad if he had been looked after. As the North London Industrial School, from which the boy was licensed out in November, 1914, have control of the lad until he is 16, the Chief Constable suggested the school should be communicated with to see if they would revoke the license and take him back and the magistrates remanded the lad

The ‘Luton Reporter’ 06 August 1918 reported “Frederick Anstee straw hat machine blocker (42) G1” was approved for medical re-examination re conscription/exemption hence he very likely never served during the war.

By the 1921 Census Annie Elizabeth, Frederick Turvey and her children Hilda and Claud were living at 7 Longmire Road St Albans. Fred was living in Luton in 1921 with his second wife Ellen and his son Percy. He died in Luton in 1936.

Anybody who can add anything to this account, or finds any mistakes on this page, please contact us at research@theansteystory.com.

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