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Charles Pratley

Great Grandad Charles Pratley was born in 1858 in Great Barrington, Gloucestershire, the son of an agricultural labourer. He married Mary Eleanor Lane in 1878 and they were first cousins. It has been legal since Henry VIII declared it so but in some US states it is illegal, the only places in the Western world today. Charles Darwin and his wife were first cousins and he knew a bit about the origin of the species!
As Norman Tebbit once suggested, people who wanted work should "get on their bikes", Charles certainly did that and we can follow his travels through the census records up to 1911. By 1881 he was a railway labourer living with Mary in Bradwell, Buckinghamshire and their first son John born in 1880. 10 years later we find he is platelayer working on the construction of the new Manchester Ship Canal and living in Runcorn, Cheshire with his enlarged family of Grandma Fox nee Eleanor Pratley born 1883, Florence J born 1887 and Janet L born 1889. By the next census he was working as a foreman navvy on the construction of the Cabin Dam in the Elan Valley with his family now enlarged to nine with the addition of Edith born 1892, Joseph S born 1893, Dorothy Z born 1898, Charles Valentine born 1896 and George F born 1901 and here is a picture of all of them in the hut in the Elan Valley where they all lived and where grandad fox was also a boarder.
The Pratley family circa 1902
Grandma Fox is standing far right at the back, then R to L are John, Florence and Janet. Front row L to R are Edith, Charles, Dorothy and Joseph with little George on his Mums knee dressed like a girl as they did in those days.
By the 1911 census Charles, now aged 53 was working away in Manchester as a foreman constuction worker. He was a workaholic, refusing to retire, he took over the George and Dragon pub at Shutford in Oxfordshire. I don't know when he died but I can certainly remember him so it must have been sometime in the 1940's which means he lived to a good age.

Buckinghamshire Census 1881 Bradwell
SurnameForenameAgeYear BornRelationOccupationBirth Place
PratleyCharles231858HeadRailway Labourer in Carriage WorksGt. Barrington, Gloucestershire
PratleyMary E251856WifeChipping Norton, Oxfordshire
PratleyJohn J11880SonNew Bradwell, Buckinghamshire

Cheshire Census 1891, 9 Ship Canal Hut, Runcorn
SurnameForenameAgeYear BornRelationOccupationBirth Place
PratleyCharles331858HeadPlatelayer on Canal LockGt. Barrington, Gloucestershire
PratleyMary E351856WifeChipping Norton, Oxfordshire
PratleyJohn J111880SonScholarNew Bradwell, Buckinghamshire
PratleyEliza81883DaughterBirmingham, Warwickshire
PratleyFlorence J41887DaughterAtherton, Lancashire
PratleyJanet L21889DaughterWesthoughtow, Lancashire
PratleyCharlotte651826MotherLiving on her own meansIcomb, Gloucestershire
PratleyEliza81883DaughterBirmingham, Warwickshire

Radnorshire Census 1901, 29 Elan Village, Llanwrthwl, Breconshire
SurnameForenameAgeYear BornRelationOccupationBirth Place
PratleyCharles431858HeadForeman NavvyGt. Barrington, Gloucestershire
PratleyMary E451856WifeChipping Norton, Oxfordshire
PratleyJohn J211880SonCarpenters LabourerNew Bradwell, Buckinghamshire
PratleyEleanor Elizabeth181883DaughterHousemaid DomesticBirmingham, Warwickshire
PratleyFlorence J141887DaughterKitchenmaid DomesticAtherton, Lancashire
PratleyEdith P91892DaughterRuncorn, Cheshire
PratleyJoseph S51896SonLatchford, Cheshire
PratleyDorothy Z31898DaughterLlanwrthwl, Breconshire
PratleyCharles Valentine81893SonLlanwrthwl, Breconshire
PratleyGeorge F6 months1901SonLlanwrthwl, Breconshire

Lancashire Census 1911, 555 Liverpool Rd. Irlam, Nr Manchester
SurnameForenameAgeYear BornRelationOccupationBirth Place
PratleyCharles531858BoarderForeman ConstructionGt. Barrington, Gloucestershire

Shropshire Census 1911, High St, Cleobury Mortimer.
SurnameForenameAgeYear BornRelationOccupationBirth Place
PratleyMary Eleanor551856HeadChipping Norton, Oxfordshire
PratleyJoseph Sydney151896SonButchers Errand BoyElan Village, Radnorshire
PratleyDorothy Zillah131898DaughterSchoolElan Village, Radnorshire
PratleyGeorge Frederick101901SonSchoolElan Village, Radnorshire

Charles Valentine was boarding with his sister, my grandma.

Created on Jun 1st, 2015