John Anstey (DY 30)

See ‘Anstey: A Complete History From the Norman Invasion to World War One‘ for much more on the Dyrham Ansteys. 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 Dyrham Ansteys fit into the pedigree descendent from Hubert de Anesti, the 12th century originator of the ‘Anstey’ surname.

DY 30. John Anstey: He was born in Dyrham in 1816, baptised 21 July 1816 to parents George Anstee (DY 26) and Hannah Anstee (see DY 9).

[Note: He should not be confused with John Anstee (b 1817 Doynton) who also lived in Devizes]

He married Mary Crew (daughter of the witness to Robert (DY 11)’s will in 1836, see also DY 9) on 7 December 1850 in Dyrham, having children in Dyrham: 

  • Hester Ellen Anstey (b 1852, married Walter Joseph Rickards in Montpellier, Bristol on 4 February 1873 having at least two daughters Edith E. M. R. Rickards (b 1874) who was living with her Anstey grandparents in 1881 and Rose A. Rickards (b 1880) who was living with her Anstey grandfather in 1901); 
  • Emily Ruth Anstey (baptised 30 April 1854, alive and unmarried in 1881); 
  • Rosanna Anstey (b 1856, unmarried and living with her parents in 1891); and 
  • Mary Crew Anstey (b 1858, married Basil John Spackman in 1884 in Chippenham “Marriage Jan 3 at the parish church Lacock Basil John, youngest son of the late Roger Spackman, of Kennett, to Mary Crewe, youngest daughter of John Anstey, Notton Farm, Lacock.”).

In 1851 they were at Childs Farm, Dyrham and in 1861 he was a “Farmer 220 acres employing 2 men & 2 boys” at a farm in Alderton, Malmesbury. In 1867 he was Overseer (of the Poor) for Alderton – the ‘Wiltshire Independent‘ 11 April 1867 reporting “Overseer: persons appointed overseers of the respective parishes in the magisterial division is now complete, and is follows: —Alderton, John Anstey and Stephen Wheeler...”

In 1871 they were still in Alderton, Malmesbury – he was a farmer of 215 acres. Also in 1871 he was sole executor to his father’s will, described as “farmer of the parish of Alderton“.

By the 1881 Census he was a farmer of 230 acres employing 3 men 2 boys 1 woman living at Urchfont, Devizes with his family and a granddaughter Edith E. M. R. Rickards (b 1874). In 1883 “Robert Brewer was fined 17s. for leaving the service of Mr. John Anstey, of Lacock, farmer” and “Robert Brewer, labourer, was summoned by Mr John Anstey. farmer, of Norton for leaving his service

In 1884 they were still at Notton Farm, Lacock and in 1891 the family were still living at Nottonham Farm, Cuckoobush Lane, Lacock where he was a farmer looking after both Spackman and Rickards grandchildren. By 1901 he was a widower living with another granddaughter Rose A. Rickards (b 1880) at Holeywell Farm, Corsham, Chippenham, Wiltshire. 

He died on 1 May 1904, still living at Holywell near Chippenham – he was buried at Lacock Cemetery, Chippenham, inscription “husband of Mary“. Probate was to his son in law John Spackman “farmer“.

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