Monday, 18 July 2011


Maude's professional skills were in personnel management eg Owen Owen's dept stores.How she would have laughed at "Human resources" ! She was a magistrate and sat on the bench in Liverpool for many years.

She was a card-carrying Labour Party member...and a great supporter of causes .Later she was Chair of the UNA branch in Harpenden She would have loved the fact that she shared a birthday with Mandela ,being 5 years his senior . These pics are probably on her 80th.

In later life she and elder sister Lily accepted the move to life in a care home.In "Willow Court" they had adjacent rooms : a shared sitting-room + a shared bedroom .They were thrilled when great-great niece H visited !

In late 2003 the sisters fell together : Maude helping Lily to the loo.Sadly , Maude broke her hip but seemed blissfully unaware of the severity .Lily was devastated ...and lonely...but Maude did return.

Lily , having been bright until the end,passed away in the Nov ,aged 97 ...and Maude a few weeks later , a mere 90 [always the #littlesister ...]
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On 18 July 1913 Maude Erna Oliver was born in Hamburg,returningto UK the following year,during WW1, with her mother + siblings .Her father Rev Harry J Oliver travelled separately [I have docs relating to this] .He was Chaplain to Mission to Seamen in Hamburg.

Maude always referred to herself as a "mistake" ! John ,my f-in-law, born Aug '05 and sister Lily Sept '06 . What a mistake !

To begin with Maude was educated at home by her mother,Elizabeth Mary : a graduate of Royal Holloway College . She was then sent to St Mary's College , Brighton , a school for clergy daughters, and afterwards ,on a scholarship to Newnham College,Cambridge. She read History, as did most of the Olivers, Walronds etc
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Monday, 4 April 2011

Today Picasa is being very annoying ~not letting me upload pix to my blog !! So I will tell you the story of "Miss Bashkirya" . The Russian cruise ship "Bashkirya" left Yalta in June '66 for more ports of call :Istanbul,Izmir,Athens,Corfu,Dubrovnik,Palermo,Naples and finally Gib before Bay Of Biscay and UK. We were feted in Gib as the first Russian cruise ship to visit and a small band of us went off to meet Mr Serfati,the Minister of Tourism ~bouquets for the more senior ladies . I was content with my "Miss B" sash... What a trip which didn't cost the earth .I decided to splash out a little after a broken engagement.... It started in Tilbury where we embarked on the "Nadezda Krupskaya" for Bergen,Oslo...Leningrad then overland by train to Moscow.I braved the Aeroflot flight to the Crimea so as not to miss the Boshoi. A fantastic hol which has stayed in my mind all these years. Footnote : the ex-fiance and I re-kindled our relationship in '03 and enjoyed 5 happy years together before he passed away in '08. {the Tolstoy prog on BBC1 last night reminded me of the Bashkirs}

Saturday, 22 January 2011

Lt Col Isaac TOBY Miniature

This image was sent to me by Alison Craswell** in Canberra 'who is descended from Isaac's sister- in-law, Celia SCOTT [nee KING].

Isaac's sister ,Martha Haydon TOBY married Richard OLIVER in the 1830 . They were my late husband's gggrandparents .

{** Alison contacted me recently in response to a msg board item posted by me 5+ years ago}

I'm lucky to have Isaac's commission document signed [it may have been a stamp]by the young Victoria .

In my loft I have an inscribed snuff box and letter . Sadly , the loft is out of bounds for me .Must ask my daughter when she next visits.
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Monday, 17 January 2011

This is Lt Col Isaac TOBY RM , ancestor of my late husband .My father-in-law
used to refer to this portrait as simply "The Ancestor" . I've done all the detective work!

Isaac had an active career at sea but finally was Barrack Master at Devonport in the 1850s.

I'm pretty sure that Isaac had no children .His sister Martha Haydon TOBY married Richard OLIVER in the 1830s . They were gggrandparents of my husband John Rainsford Walrond OLIVER.

One of Richard and Martha's children was Isaac Toby OLIVER, who to my knowledge , didn't marry.
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Saturday, 11 December 2010

The 2012 Olympics should be conducted in English
SIR – The previous mayor’s agreement that French should take precedence over English at the London 2012 Olympics is ludicrous (report, December 9).
As the Olympics spokesman for the London Assembly Conservative Group, I think it is nonsensical that the host nation’s language, the most widely spoken in the world, should be relegated to second place, below French, in announcements and on billboards.
Sadly, Londoners have come to expect that they will be getting more than they bargained for with the Olympics: spiralling costs, miles of road to be cordoned off for official limos and now every announcement first en fran├žais.
Andrew Boff London SE1
SIR – The demands of the International Olympic Committee – that French take precedence over English, and that the Queen attend a special IOC ceremony – sound like an early April Fool’s joke.
The Olympics began in Greece. True, it was a Frenchman who revived the Games in 1896, but that does not entitle the committee to inflict French on us. These “Olympic Orders” must be ignored!
Bob WydellOswestry, Shropshire

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

Hampton Snow Feb 2009 [ in anticipation of what might happen in winter '10-'11 !!! ]

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