WELCOME TO THE BAYLISS LINE. This blog has been created for my family. By "my family" I mean all those who are related to the Bayliss family either by blood, marriage or even relationship. There are, of course, other Bayliss families not related to us but this blog has at its heart a very specific family who had their origins in Gloucestershire. I am connected to that family because my mother was a Bayliss and it was her curiosity that started my research back in the early 1990's. So, what are you likely to see on this blog? Well, as it is a blog, I want it to be as entertaining as possible rather that a dry listing of facts (that is for Ancestry.com). I will, hopefully, be posting entries on our ancestors and relatives, on the places where they lived, and the historical times they lived through. I have an extensive collection of photographs of people and places which I will, of course, be sharing.

I'd like to ask anybody who reads this blog to give me some feedback. I'd really like this to be a two way thing. It sometimes unearths new information and, to be honest, it gives me encouragement. There will be two ways of providing feedback - either through the comment button (you will need a Google account for this) or via the e-mail address which appears on this page - alternatively, ring me. Now scroll down to read the latest entries.....and, of course, via Facebook.

Thursday, 8 September 2011


Annesley Road
  Esther Abbotts was born at 20 Annesley Road on 24th March 1885, although for most of her life she would claim that her birthday was 17th March - St.Patrick's Day. Her parents John and Polly Abbotts would have one more daughter after Esther, this was Daisy who was born two years later. John would die in 1895 and by 1901 Polly and her children - at least those who were still living at home - were living on the other side of Dartmouth Park Hill at 7 Doynton Street. The census form for that year shows that Esther and Daisy were working in a pickle factory - early research indicate thfat this was probably situated in Kingsdown Roa off Holloway Road.

The Herbert Bayliss who returned to Upper Holloway in 1902 was probably very different from the boy who had left two years earlier. As the youngest of the Bayliss brothers he had no doubt been dominated by his elder siblings. He was eighteen going on nineteen, he had travelled to Africa which was certainly more exotic than Upper Holloway! Army life was tough - even tougher in wartime - and there is little doubt that Bert came back an independent young man. He returned to find that none of his family were living in the house where he had been born - his older brother Charlie (Albert Charles) had married the daughter of the local police constable and had moved across Anatola Road to live in her family house. As 7 Anatola Road had been owned by Herbert's grandfather and presumably had remained in the family during Charles William's and Albert Charles tenure it is possible that after his marriage Albert Charles had continued as the landlord of the property. Needing accomodation Herbert took a room at 38 Brunswick Road (another of the close knit group of streets that formed Highgate New Town) where he found the Abbotts sisters living.

Brunswick Road
 Just what the reaction among the Abbotts sisters (their mother Polly had died the previous year) was in 1903 when Esther abouts announced that she was pregnant can only be imagined. Herbert was the man responsible and so a marriage was arranged. Herbert and Esther were married on Sunday 14th June at St.Peter's Church on Dartmouth Park Hill. Sunday weddings were quite common at the time  as this was often the only day the bride and groom could have off from work.

St.Peter's Church before its conversion into
luxury flats
The service was conducted by Revd. Hindle and the witnesses were one Bert Beren and Minnie Gasher. Six months later Esther gave birth to her son, named Herbert after his father, at 38 Brunswick Road. More children followed, a girl - Florence Maud - in 1905 and in 1907, by which time the family had moved to New Road in Crouch Hill, Ethel Rosina (my mother).  By 1909 the family were back in Upper Holloway living at 149 Fairbridge Road where a son, Charles, was born. Another move to Hampden Road where Arthur was born in 1912, another girl, named Esther after her mother, followed in 1914.

Sadly, no pictures from this period seem to have survived. The nearest we can get is a studio photograph of Herbert taken, I believe, circa 1913/14. It shows Bert as a handsome man still proudly wearing his Queen's South Africa medal (although the ribbon is missing).

Herbert Bayliss (1883-1918)


  1. Good pictures with Hargrave Park school in the background and St Peter's Church which I think is a very unique building.
    Sad it's no longer a church but a block of flats.

  2. Wow, thank you Ernest for all of your hard work. I was researching Charles Bayliss, my 3rd Great Grandfather, and came across your blog. I am so glad I did. I am amazed at some of the old photo's, I can really see a family resemblance to my dad, his brothers, nephews etc. on a different note I need to try and watch the Australian Stargazing live again, I spotted a Bayliss on there whom was the image of my uncle David Bayliss and I loved to find if he is connected, the likeness was uncanny. I am trying to research further back but have hit a hurdle with William and Elizabeth, the parents of Charles (1821-1898), they are listed on his Baptism but apart from that its hard to pin them down as there are several Williams and Elizabeth Bayliss's from that part of the world. Oh well, the search goes on.

    1. Fascinating, Christine! I'd love to know more. Can you send me an e-mail address. Are you related to the sisters, Iris and Esther who went to Australia? I can't think who else. I'm at ernest.harris39b@yahoo.co.uk