The Sixpenny Handley Ansteys

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

Overview of the Sixpenny Handley Ansteys

The Sixpenny Handley Ansteys of Dorset are a sub-branch of the Gussage Ansteys, who themselves are a sub-branch of the Tarrant Crawford Ansteys.

There are two Sixpenny Handley Anstey patriarchs, being brothers John Anstey who married Alice Feltham in Sixpenny Handley in 1748, and William Anstey who married Ann Maidment a year later in Sixpenny Handley in 1749.

William Anstey (b 1717 Gussage)

William Anstey (b 1717 Gussage to father Richard Anstey) married Ann Maidment in Sixpenny Handley in 1749. They had children:

William Anstey died in 1752 in Sixpenny Handley, so his widow Ann Anstey remarried James Vincent in 1757 in Chettle (she was a “widow of Sixpenny Handley“). James Vincent was witness to the marriage in East Stoke in 1802 of William Anstey (b 1777).

John Anstey (b 1726 Gussage)

John Anstey (b 1726 Gussage to father Richard Anstey) married Alice Feltham (b 1725) in Sixpenny Handley in 1748. They had the following children baptised in Gussage St Michael:

  • John Anstey (b 1749, probably died in Sixpenny Handley in 1765? – though see John Anstey (b 1747) below);
  • Sarah Anstey (b 1751, buried an infant in Gussage “daughter of John and Alice“);
  • William Anstey (b 1752 – see below);
  • Sarah Anstey (b 1757);
  • James Anstey (b 1761, died 1762);
  • James Anstey (b 1763, died an infant);
  • Edward Anstey (b 1764, died in 1765);
  • Edward Anstey (b 1765, died an infant).

John Anstey (b 1726) was buried in Sixpenny Handley in 1815 aged 90. Alice Anstey, his widow, died in 1816 in Sixpenny Handley, aged 91.

John Anstey (b 1747)

In 1771, John Anstey married Ann Jay in Sixpenny Handley. We have somewhat of a problem here because we have three possible “John Anstey” from this sub-branch who this could be, and a good case can be made for each one. Working backwards, we know that John Anstey was born in c1747 because of his burial in Sixpenny Handley in 1827 “aged 80“. This John Anstey could therefore be either:

  • John Anstey (b 1749 to John Anstey (b 1726) because he had brothers called ‘James’ and he named a son ‘James’); or
  • John Anstey (b 1750 to father Thomas Anstey (b c1715 – see the Gussage page) because his father was called ‘Thomas’ and he named a son ‘Thomas’); or
  • John Anstey (b 1751 to father William Anstey (b 1717) because his stepfather (who brought him up after his father died when he was an infant) was called James Vincent, and he named a son ‘James’)

We need more clues to disentangle this one, though the evidence currently points to John Anstey (b 1751) because William Anstey (b 1777 below) had James Vincent as witness to his 1802 wedding in East Stoke.

John Anstey (b c1747/51) and Ann Jay had children in Sixpenny Handley:

  • Sarah Anstey (b 1774);
  • William Anstey (b 1777, married Charlotte Angel in 1802 in East Stoke, he is the patriarch of the East Stoke Ansteys);
  • Thomas Anstey (b 1780);
  • James Anstey (b 1786 – see below);
  • Mary Anstey (b 1790);

John Anstey died in Sixpenny Handley “aged 80” in 1827; his widow Ann Anstey died in Handley in 1829 “aged 82”

William Anstey (b 1752 Gussage)

William Ansty (b 1752 Gussage to father John Anstey) was “of Wimborne St Giles” when he married Mary Johnson in 1777 in Sixpenny Handley. They had children:

  • Ann Anstey (b 1789);
  • William Anstey (b 1792, married Sarah Tolerfield in 1814 in Sixpenny Handley, having children in Sixpenny Handley John Anstey (b 1815 – it is possible that this ‘John‘ moved to Bloxworth, though this doesn’t fit with the 1851 Census entry where his father William, living with him, was born in 1777 – see East Stoke Anstey page for more); Peter Anstey (b 1817, married Martha Hardiman in 1843 in Wimborne and was living in Deanland Road, Sixpenny Handley as an agricultural labourer in the 1851 Census); Mary Ann Anstey (b 1819); Sarah Anstey (b 1823); Sarah Anstey (b 1824); William Anstey (b 1826) and Jeremiah Anstey (b 1828, also known as George J. Anstey, patriarch of the Utica, NY Ansteys of America). The family were living in Handley Street, Sixpenny Handley in the 1841 Census (transcribed as ‘Ainsty’). William Anstey (a labourer) and Sarah were living alone in Sixpenny Handley next door to the ‘Vincent‘ family in 1851);
  • Mary Ansty (b 1793, died an infant?);
  • Sarah Anstey (b 1793);
  • John Anstey (b 1796, died in Sixpenny Handley in 1814 “aged 18“);

Mary Anstey (wife) died in Sixpenny Handley in 1811 and William Anstey died in Sixpenny Handley in 1818 “aged 68

James Anstey (b 1786 Sixpenny Handley)

James Anstey (b 1786 in Sixpenny Handley) married Diana (Dinah) Davis in Chettle, Dorset in 1807 (he was “of Tarrant Gunville“, witnesses were Henry Watts and Elias Lane). Dinah died in 1817 in Dean, buried in Sixpenny Handley, so James Anstey remarried Catherine Scammel (known as Kitty) in 1819 in Sixpenny Handley. They lived in Dean, later Minchington and finally Sixpenny Handley, having numerous children baptised in Gussage St Andrew, namely:

  • John Anstey (b 1808);
  • James Anstey (b 1810, married Rhoda Hart in Wimborne St Giles in 1843 (father confirmed as “James Anstey“). They had children in Wimborne St Giles and Sixpenny Handley James Thomas Anstey (b 1844); Mary Jane Anstey (b 1848, known as Jane, married Thomas Maidment in 1869 in Sixpenny Handley. She died in April 1880 buried at St Clement Church, Bournemouth); Charles Hart Anstey (b 1853, died in March 1880 in Bournemouth likely without marrying, buried at St Clement Church with inscription “brother of Jane Maidment“); William George Anstey (b 1856 – see below); Arthur H. Anstey (b 1860) and Sydney J. Anstey (b 1863). In the 1871 Census the family were living in High Street, Sixpenny Handley. By the 1881 Census James Anstey was a farm gardener, living with his family in Alexandra Cott, Christchurch, Hampshire);
  • Harriet Jane Anstey (b 1813, James Anstey was a “labourer“, they were living at Dean);
  • Thomas Anstey (b 1816 – by which time James and Diana were living in Minchington);
  • John Anstey (b 1819 – James and Catherine, still living in Minchington);
  • Eliza Anstey (b 1821, had an illegitimate son Thomas Anstey (b 1845 Gussage St Andrews) and then she married Henry Rolls in c1850);
  • Elizabeth Anstey (b 1823);
  • Sophia Anstey (b 1824, a servant in Deanland in the 1851 Census);
  • William Anstey (b 1827, died before 1841?);
  • Aaron Anstey (b 1829 – James (a labourer) and Catherine now living in Sixpenny Handley);

In the 1841 Census, the family were in Minchington and by the 1851 Census, James Anstey was a “pauper agricultural labourer” living at Woodcutts in Dean, Sixpenny Handley with his sons John Anstey and Aaron Anstey.

William George Anstey (b 1856 Gussage)

William George Anstey, sometimes known as George, was born in 1856 in Sixpenny Handley, baptised in Gussage, to parents James Anstey and Rhoda Hart. He grew up in High Street, Sixpenny Handley where in 1871 he was an agricultural labourer. William George Anstey married Elizabeth Ann Sumner (b c1865) in 1880 in Christchurch, Hampshire and they had children in Christchurch/Bournemouth:

  • Anna Maria Anstey (b 1880, known as Annie);
  • Charles James Anstey (b 1883 – an Anstey Hero);
  • Lillian [Hilda] Florence Mary Anstey (b 1885, known as Lilly, married Herbert Chester Watts in Christchurch in 1903);
  • Emily Anstey (b 1888, died an infant)
  • William George Anstey (b 1888, died 1889);
  • Daisy Evelyn Anstey (b 1890, married James Henry Hogben in Christchurch in 1914);
  • Sidney Herbert Anstey (b 1891 – an Anstey Hero);
  • Rhoda Winifred Maud Anstey (b 1893, known as Maud, married Percy J. Farmer in 1917 in Christchurch);
  • Reginald Henry Francis Anstey (b 1896 – an Anstey Hero);
  • Dorothy May Anstey (b 1898, married Albert T. Pearson in Bournemouth in 1925 – she was mentioned in the 1959 probate of her brother Reginald Francis Anstey);
  • Leslie Grenville Anstey (b 1898 – an Anstey Hero);
  • Gladys Janet Anstey (b 1900, died an infant);
  • Elsie Gertrude Anstey (b 1902, died 1903);
  • Ida Kathleen R. Anstey (b 1904, married Ernest Tastard in 1927 in Bournemouth); and
  • Edward Thomas Anstey (b 1906, became a Merchant Seaman and was living with his brothers Reginald Francis Anstey and Leslie Anstey at 81 Stourvale Road, Bournemouth in the late 1920s)

In the 1901 Census William George Anstey (as ‘George Ansley‘) was living at 30, Fitzharris Road, Bournemouth, Christchurch, Hampshire & Dorset – he was a cab proprieter. In the 1911 Census, William George Anstey was a cab driver living with his family at 42 Chatsworth Road, Bournemouth.

William George Anstey died in 1926 in Bournemouth, his age was confirmed as 70.

Further Details on the Sixpenny Handley Ansteys

#1. George Anstey born in Sixpenny Handley in 1848 is son of Arthur Anstey, perpetual Curate of Handley who was living there at that time. This family is not connected to the Sixpenny Handley Ansteys, they are part of the Milverton Anstey sub-branch.

#2. William Anstey and Harriet (Hoyle) who had a son Henry in Sixpenny Handley in 1815 were married in Fisherton Anger in Wiltshire in 1814. William Anstey was a butcher by trade and a widower when he married Harriet.

We are actively on the lookout for Sixpenny Handley Anstey experts alive today who are willing to add their findings and knowledge to this project. We are particularly interested in research regarding Sixpenny Handley 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 Sixpenny Handley 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 ‘Sixpenny Handley’ 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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