St Mary's Church: Family History Contribution

June 8th, 2010

St Mary the Virgin, Aocks Green, Postcard 1905 (Original is on Acocks Green History Society website)

We were intrigued when Ted Tann-Watson, seeing our posting late last year on the Stautory Listing of St Mary’s (now Stat Listed Grade II) wrote to this site and offered us a history of the Watsons of Acocks Green. Ted wrote:

My Great Great Grandfather, John Watson, was involved in the committee
organising the building of the Church, and his brother, Joseph, was
Churchwarden for several years (there is a plaque commemorating this
at the west end of the Church, on the south wall).  I have a copy
of the Book of Common Prayer presented to Gt Gt Grandfather by
Rev Gwyther in appreciation of his work, and suitably inscribed.
Both John and Joseph, and several other members of the family,
lie in the Churchyard.

The Watsons, originally grocers and haberdashers of Smallbrook Street (Now Smallbrook Ringway), lived, for many years, from 1864, in Botteville Road. Ted has some useful information about the building of the two houses they lived in there.

The family is also interesting. Charles Watson was a home inventor and scientific experimenter. His son Ted

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was an an engineer who was involved in important developments at both the Morris car company, and, later, at Lucas’s, where he became chief engineer. He recevied an OBE for his work on the areo engine, and, later an honorary doctrate for developments to the motor engine. Ted has also offered his nine page study to Acocks Green History Society and we suspect it will eventually find a more permanently accessible home on the History Society website. However, meantime, we thought people might enjoy Ted’s Watson History, one or two bits of which might eventually find their way into our Conservation Area project. You can download Ted’s Watson Family History by clicking on the link here: Watson Family of Acocks Green – History

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