The Shoreditch Ansteys

by Gary. M. Ansteychief researcher of the Anstey story project.

Many thanks to Julia for her help constructing this pedigree

Overview of the Shoreditch Ansteys

The Shoreditch Ansteys are a sub-branch of the Crediton Ansteys (evolved from ‘Anstis’), headed by Francis Anstey (b 1783 Crediton). As such, they are an ‘Anstey evolved from Anstis‘ sub-branch and thus do not connect to the wider Anstey pedigree descendent from Hubert de Anstey.

Francis Anstey (b 1783 Crediton)

Francis Anstey was born in 1783 in Crediton, baptised on 22 April 1783 as “Francis, son of John Anstey and Sarah” per the parish register.

[Note: “John Anstey and Sarah” are very probably John Anstis (Anstey) and Sarah Body who married 1 April 1766 in Crediton. It is very unlikely that it refers to John Anstey and Sarah Badcock who married 17 September 1783 in Crediton, five months AFTER Francis was baptised]

Francis Anstey married Sarah Baker in 1806 at St Ann Soho, Westminster and they had children in Spitalfields Christ Church near Stepney:

  • James Francis Anstey (b 1807 Stepney, baptised in March 1807);
  • John Anstey (b 1809, married Mary Elizabeth Langham (b 1810 Islington) in St Dionis Backchurch, London in 1837. In the 1851 Census they were living at High Street Hoxton, Shoreditch, where John was a grocer. John, Mary Elizabeth and his niece Esther were living with John‘s parents in Shoreditch in the 1861 Census – John was still a grocer. John died on 18 February 1876 in Shoreditch “aged 67“, probate was to his widow Mary Elizabeth Anstey, then living at 217 Hoxton Street Shoreditch. Mary Elizabeth Anstey died in 1883 in Shoreditch, living at 100 Bridport Place, Hoxton; probate was to Ann Gillinghamwidow, sister and only next of kin“);
  • Ann Anstey (b 1813, baptised October 1813 Christchurch, Spitalfields); and
  • William Anstey (b 1816, married Sarah Ann Ray in Christ Church Greyfriars Newgate, London in 1835. They had children William James Anstey (b 1838 Bethnal Green, died 1839); James Anstey (b 1839 Whitechapel, baptised 10 May 1840 in Christ Church, Spitalfields. He married Charlotte Page in 1863 in Bethnal Green, having a daughter Esther Charlotte Anstey (b 1864 Bethnal Green, buried at Victoria Park Cemetery in Hackney in 1865 – they were living at 12 Crabtree Row, Bethnal Green at the time). His first wife must have died because in the 1871 Census James Anstey was a “wood sawyer” living at Sanders Court, St Philip & Jacob, Clifton, Bristol with Martha Roweas wife” and her two sons. By the 1881 Census James and Martha were living at 10, Narrow Plain, St Philip and Jacob, Bristol where he was a labourer); John Anstey (b 1842 Whitechapel – see below); Esther Anstey (b 1845 Bethnal Green – with her grandfather in the 1861 Census. She married Thomas Philip Brown in 1866 in Islington); Elizabeth Anstey (b 1849, died 1850?); and William Anstey (b 1851 Bethnal Green, probably died 1853 Bethnal Green). In 1840 William Anstey and his wife Sarah Ann were living at Red Lion Court, Christ Church, Spitalfields, where William was a “tailor“. Sarah Ann Anstey died in 1856 in Bethnal Green; it is likely her husband William Anstey also died there in 1856).

Sarah Anstey died in 1819 in St Botolph, Bishopsgate so Francis Anstey (“widower“) remarried Esther Owen (b c1792) in 1822 in St John’s Church Hackney.

In the ‘Morning Herald (London)‘ 21 December 1850 edition appears “Charities to the Aged Blind, distributed by the Painters Company London the gift of John Stock Esq…the following petitioners were elected pensioners for life at 10l per annum to Mr Stock’s charity: viz…Francis Anstey, South Hackney…” – so from this it seems that Francis Anstey was by this time blind.

In the 1851 Census Francis Anstey and Esther were living at 9 Twemlow Terrace, Saint John, Hackney where Francis was an “annuitant from Crediton“. By the 1861 Census Francis was a “fundholder” living with his wife; his son John and his wife Mary Elizabeth; and his grandaughter Esther at 144, Hoxton Old Town, St Leonard Shoreditch.

Francis Anstey died in 1865 in Shoreditch; probate was to his widow Esther Anstey who herself died in Shoreditch on 6 November 1868. Her probate was in 1870 stating that she was living at 217 Hoxton Street, Hoxton at the time of her death (same address as her son John per above); effects to John Owen her “nephew and one of the next of kin of the deceased“.

John Anstey (b 1842 Whitechapel)

John Anstey was born in 1842 in Whitechapel to parents William Anstey and Sarah Ann Ray (per above). He married Martha Brinkley [Lawrence] (b c1831 Chatham, Kent) in 1864 in Bethnal Green.

[Note: Martha‘s maiden name was Lawrence; she married Thomas William Brinkley in 1847, having six ‘Brinkley‘ children with him. He died in 1855 so she married John Anstey in 1864]

John Anstey and Martha had children:

  • James George Anstey (b 1863 Whitechapel to mother ‘Brinkley’, died 1864?);
  • John William Anstey (b 1864 Shoreditch, married Annie Hiscock in 1885 in Shoreditch. They had children Annie Frances Anstey (b 1888, died 1890);​​ Martha Elizabeth Anstey (b 1891, a french polisher living with her parents in 1911);​​ Maud Mary Anstey (b 1893, a french polisher living with her parents in 1911​​); John Albert Anstey (b 1896 died 1909); William George Anstey (b 1898 died an infant);​​ Alfred Neal Anstey (b 1900 died an infant);​​ James Anstey (b 1901, died an infant);​ Lilian Anstey (b 1903, died an infant);​​ Henry William Anstey (b 1904, died 1905); Emily Anstey (b 1909, died 1910); and Henry George Anstey (b 1910, died 1977). In the 1911 Census John, Annie and their three surviving children were living at 87 Welbourne Road, Tottenham where John was a “fret cutter“);
  • Esther Anstey (b 1864 Whitechapel to mother ‘Lawrence’, died an infant);
  • Mary Anstey (b 1864 Whitechapel to mother ‘Lawrence’, died an infant);
  • Edith Esther Anstey (b 1866 Bethnal Green to mother ‘Lawrence’, married Robert Mann in 1883 in Bethnal Green);
  • James Anstey (b 1867 Shoreditch to mother ‘Brinkley’, died an infant);
  • George Anstey (b 1868 Hoxton, married Sarah Cartwright in Shoreditch in 1888 having children Sarah Frances Anstey (b 1891 St Lukes); John William Anstey (b 1892 Hoxton – an Anstey Hero); Lucy Edith Anstey (b 1898 Shoreditch); and George Frederick Anstey (b 1911 Shoreditch). In the 1911 Census the family were living at 44 Shap Street, Shoreditch, London where George was a fret cutter – also living with them was George‘s widower father); and
  • Frederick William Anstey (b 1870 Bethnal Green – an Anstey Hero)

In the 1871 Census the family were living at John Street, St Leonard Shoreditch where John Anstey was a “fret cutter” and his wife Martha was a “boot binder” [Note there are also two children Maria Anstey (b 1851) and Sarah Anstey (b 1855) but these are actually two of Martha’s ‘Brinkley’ children]. By the 1881 Census the family were living at 35, Monteith Road, Bow Aka St Mary Stratford-Le-Bow, Poplar where John was a “piano fret cutter“. By the 1911 Census John was a “widower” and a “fret cutter” living at 44 Shap Street, Shoreditch with his son George Anstey and his family.

Further Details on the Shoreditch Ansteys

We are actively on the lookout for Shoreditch Anstey experts alive today who are willing to add their findings and knowledge to this project. We are particularly interested in research regarding Shoreditch Ansteys who fought in World War One, preferably with personal souvenirs such as letters sent by the soldiers or military photos etc. 

Anybody who has such expertise and inclination, please contact us at

We have already uploaded bits of information and documentation about the Shoreditch Ansteys, and continue to upload more all the time (see Project Updates), however it is spread over various segments of the website.

The best way to find said information is to enter ‘Shoreditch’ in the search box at the bottom of this page and a list of relevant pages will appear.

Anybody who finds any mistakes on this page, please contact us at and we will correct it.

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