Robert Anstey (DY 48)

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 48. Robert Anstey: He was born in 1858 in Iron Acton (some censuses say Almondsbury) to parents Cornelius Anstey (DY 25) and Mary Gibbs. He grew up on the family farm at Chew Magna, where he was a “shopman in drapery” in 1881. He married Elizabeth Mary Tomkins in Dundry, Bedminster in 1884 (“ANSTEY-TOMKINS.—August 22, 1884, at Baptist Chapel, Dundry, by Mr G. M. Carlile, Robert Anstey to Elizabeth Mary Tomkins“) and they moved to Horfield, Bishopston near Barton Regis, Bristol, having children:

  • Evaline Mary Anstey (b 1885, died in 1897 in Barton Regis);
  • Robert Harold Anstey (DY 73 – b 1887, served during World War One);
  • Gilbert Tomkins Anstey (DY 75 – b 1889, served during World War One);
  • Joseph Anstey (DY 76 – b 1891, served during World War One);
  • Daniel Anstey (DY 78 – b 1893, served during World War One);
  • Oliver Anstey (b 1895, living at 23 Brynland Avenue Bishopston Bristol in the 1911 Census. He still lived at 23 Brynland Avenue Bishopston in 1934 working as a commercial clerk when he dissolved a partnership with Robert Parson concerning the business ‘The Kool-ee Manufacturing Company’. He died in 1936 in Bristol – “DEATHS ANSTEY.—September 1, Oliver, the beloved son of Robert and Elizabeth Anstey, 23, Brynland Avenue ; age 41. Funeral service, Horfield Baptist Church, Friday,“);
  • Colman Gibbs Anstey (DY 64 – b 1896); and
  • Alfred Tomkins Anstey (DY 87 – b 1899, served during World War One)

In 1891 he was a commercial traveller already living at the long term family home of 23 Brynland Avenue Horfield, Bishopston, Bristol. By 1901 he was a “commercial traveller drapery“, living at Clevedon, Long Ashton, Somerset? and in the 1911 Census the family were back? (did they ever leave?) living at 23 Brynland Avenue Bishopston Bristol.

The ‘Western Daily Press‘ 11 July 1916 reported “WORKERS’ EDUCATIONAL ASSOCIATION, Accompanied by Mr Robert Anstey, about 30 members of the Workers’Educational Association went for a nature study ramble on Saturday afternoon. Starting from Ashton they took the field paths in the direction of Dundry, observing and making notes of the wild flowers and grasses by the way. At the first halting place Mr Anstey said it was difficult to make a selection from the wealth of illustration which surrounded them, and went on to explain the structure of some of the flowers and nature’s wonderful provision for their growth, fertilisation, and propagation. He also pointed out numerous instances in which nature had anticipated man’s contrivances. After tea at Dundry, the evening being so fine, the walk was continued towards Chew Magna, from which a fine view of the Mendips was obtained. Here also is that famous quarry the stone of which on high geological authority, contains almost every fossil found in stone. The journey home was through Bishopsworth. Mr Anstey was warmly thanked for contributing so much to the knowledge and pleasure of the members.“.

In 1928 he was referred to as “Mr Robert Anstey (Horfield)“. In the 1939 Register Robert and his wife were still living at 23 Brynland Avenue, Bristol; he was a “retired commercial traveller drapery“. The ‘Western Daily Press‘ on 14 February 1940 reported “MR ROBERT ANSTEY The many friends who know Mr Robert Anstey, of 23, Brynland Avenue, Bristol, will be sorry to learn that last Monday week he met with an accident in Falcondale Road and was taken to hospital unconscious. Mr Anstey has for nearly 50 years been associated with Horfield Baptist Church. He is well known in the city and villages as an effective preacher and his nature study talks and conducted tours in connection with the W. E. A. indicate his active life.” – around the same time he was described as “a speaker on literary, scientific and religious subjects

In 1947 “DEATHS ANSTEY.—Elizabeth Mary, on Feb. 11, her 90th year, beloved wife of Robert Anstey, 23 Brynland Avenue, Bristol. Funeral Canford Cemetery

He died in 1952; his probate reads “ANSTEY Robert of 23 Brynland Avenue Bishopston Bristol died 29 May 1952 at the Hospital Thornbury Gloucester. Probate Bristol 22 October to Robert Harold Anstey [DY 73] civil servant and Gilbert Tomkins Anstey [DY 75] retired civil servant. Effects £1203“.

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