Ancestral Home in Thornton Heath – not really!

Yesterday at about 3.00 p.m. we set off for Thornton Heath, catching bus 198 in Lebanon Road, to find a house where Stephen’s great grandfather lived with his family at the time of the 1891 census. He tracked this down using Ancestry.com. The house address is 69 The Drive, Thornton Heath. The bus took us from outside of our housing estate directly to Thornton Heath and home again.

This area was opened up after a railway station was built. The town centre appears a little shabby, but there are rather nice homes on the hill. As well as finding the actual house we walked up to what was a water tower for the town and is now used for flats (rather posh ones). We talked to a woman who had done some research on the building, though she said there wasn’t very much to go on and she is not sure when the building stopped being used as a water tower and was converted in homes. She lives in a little row of nice fairly modern houses that share the garden and parking area of the WT.

Details from the census are: Henry James Robinson, 29 years of age, a farm labourer, married to Emma and their son Henry John, 7 years of age.

Taking photos in the late afternoon, with sunset at about 4.15, meant there wasn’t much light. I’ve done a bit of work with them in Lightroom, but they are still rather dull, especially processed by WordPress for uploading here. Never mind, they document the visit.

Stephen standing outside of the actual house. The garden was unkempt, but there are some nice rosebushes.
Stephen standing outside of the actual house. The garden was unkempt, but there are some nice rosebushes.
The street sign was just a little further along. We could see the water tower from this position, so decided to walk up to take a closer look. We didn't know what it was at that stage.
The street sign was just a little further along. We could see the water tower from this position, so decided to walk up to take a closer look. We didn’t know what it was at that stage.
The Water Tower. Fortunately one of the residents from the newer houses was outside and we were able to ask her about the building.
The Water Tower. Fortunately one of the residents from the newer houses was outside and we were able to ask her about the building.
We noticed there was a nice looking park at the top of the hill, so we walked up there. We could see something of a view through the trees, but in summer that would have been hidden by leaves.
We noticed there was a nice looking park at the top of the hill, so we walked up there. We could see something of a view through the trees, but in summer that would have been hidden by leaves.
Here is Stephen outside of the Thornton Heath Railway Station. The area was quite rural before the railway was built. Bearing in mind that Stephen's great grandfather was a farm labourer.
Here is Stephen outside of the Thornton Heath Railway Station. The area was quite rural before the railway was built. Bearing in mind that Stephen’s great grandfather was a farm labourer.
The Clock Tower at the town centre.
The Clock Tower at the town centre.

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