Sunday, 27 May 2012

The Erringtons of Great Yarmouth

The Erringtons of Great Yarmouth

  Old Meeting House, Gaol Street, Gt Yarmouth.

If you look back in the blog to 7th January 2012 you will see an advert about French tuition classes in Great Yarmouth.
 It was placed there by Jerome Nicholas Vlieland the Elder in 1821. 
The address is given as Chapel Street and opposite Mr Erringtons. 

Recently I have been doing research on the places the Vlieland family lived in Great Yarmouth. I thought it would be interesting to discover just where exactly this address was.
I have also been trying to discover why the family would choose Great Yarmouth for resettlement and more on this subject will be covered at a later date. 
While doing this research though, I have discovered facts about a very interesting family, who probably had a great influence on JNV’s own family during their early years here. 
This can’t be proven though and the blog only deals with fact. 
So you must come to your own conclusions.

George Errington is the Errington mentioned in this advert.
He was born into the family home of at least 40 years standing at the time of his birth 12 Oct 1761. It was on the corner of Row 113 (called Errington Row on a document dated 1714) also called Tilson’s South Row and Chapel Street, almost opposite St Georges Chapel itself. 
The full length of this Street was called King Street but by many it was called Chapel Street from St. George south side. 
He was the only surviving son of George Errington 1720-1795 and Elizabeth Colby died 1801 who were married Needham 9th Nov 1758. 
George the elder was one of 4 sons of Samuel Errington and Elizabeth Barker. 
Elizabeth father owned considerable fishing properties, which on his death passed into his son in laws family.
How much of this fortune passed to George the younger we do not know but from records of the time we know he and his family were land owners who were well respected and owned boats, curing houses and rope works in Great Yarmouth. 
We also know from church records the family were for many years Non-conformist who worshiped at the Old Meeting, Goal St. A Congregational Church built in1733 and demolished 1869.
 It was situated on Goal Street, a street parallel to Chapel Street but nearer the quay.

It would seem George the younger had more than one string to his bow. 
Perhaps because herring and mackerel fishing were seasonal as well as his curing houses. When the family were not so busy they also ran a prosperous rope works and after rope walks were banned from within the city walls they moved them to outside the walls which are show on maps as rope walks in abundance near to his home on the dunes, and many later Victorian roadways were to follow the lines of  these walks as the dunes were developed for housing and hotels In 1803 a deed mentions “the hemp house and ground, then late fish house of George Errington, rope maker of the East part”. 
He was a ship owner, curer and rope maker in Pigot’s directory of 1830.

George was to marry twice as far as I can tell. 
He married his first wife Hannah Howes in Yarmouth 21st April1789 and they produce at least 3 children together, 2 of which died very young. 
A daughter Emily born 1798 the only child to survive. 
Hannah died some time after this and George married again this time to a Harriet Notcutt of Ipswich, Suffolk. 
From this marriage 2 sons and 5 daughters were the result. Born between 1812 and 1822.

Emily (by his first marriage) married in 1820 Richard Cowling Taylor 1789-1851 who was worthy of an entre in Wikipedia as an English surveyor and geologist. 
In July 1830 he went to the USA and died Philadelphia.

Family in America say Harriet Emigrated to New York 10th Oct 1832 with her 4 daughters and one son . Whether her husband and sons went on before or after is unknown.
But they did also emigrate and George died 24th March 1839 in New York aged 78 years of age.
Harriet lived in Manhattan until 1850 when she moved to Staten Island.
Descendants of this American family claim that the family lost its livelihood in Great Yarmouth during the Great Storm of 1836. But we do not know the precise date. 
According to records at Great Yarmouth there was indeed a Great Storm that year on  29th November when 23 vessels were lost in and around the Town.
It would seem this George Errington wrote a Journal of Great Yarmouth Fishing Industry from 1787-1828.
 He won a number of awards for this and his contribution to the improvement of its industry. 
He is said to have been responsible for the improvement in the cure of white Herrings after the manner of the Dutch Pickled  Herring.
 He employed experienced Dutch fishermen who held the secret of their trade. 
Part of this being the use of the herring buss, a type of sea-going fishing vessel used by Dutch and Flemish herring fishermen in the 15th century through to early 19th century. 
The bus was first adapted for use as a fishing vessel in the Netherlands, after the invention of gibbing made it possible to preserve herring at sea. 
This made longer voyages feasible, and hence enabled Dutch fishermen to follow the herring shoals far from the coasts. 
The first herring buss was probably built in Hoorn around 1415. 
The last one was built in Vlaardingen in1841.

 map of Yarmouth 1905

Errington family tree thanks to Gilly !

We received more information
The old house at 135 King Street is being renovated and unique marble painted decorations have been found on the walls.

In the front first floor room plasterboard has been removed, which revealed Georgian panelling.  The panelling was removed in the search for asbestos revealing painted walls of a marble character.  It appears that there are two layers of paint.  It is thought that the decorative marbling had been painted in the early part of the 18th century.  In places it has been over-painted.  It is similar to the unique and expensive marble painting on the columns in St. George’s Church (c1715), but is less sophisticated. It is blue and pink.  The idea to paint the walls in this room might have come from the church or, maybe, from a Grand Tour.   Also in this room is wallpaper which pre-dates 1830.  It was nailed to the wall as wallpaper was expensive and nailing allowed it to be moved to another place.  This shows that the property was of high status and vied with South Quay in terms of grandeur.

Below is a gravestone in St Nicholas Church GY you might not be familiar with.  The gravestone miraculously survived the bombing and subsequent fire during the Second World War.

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