Wedding at Swinton

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Saint John the Baptist, Mexborough

Mary Alice Walker, born circa 1877 in Gawber, Barnsley, is my first cousin, four times removed and daughter of Richard Walker and Sarah Ann Mellars.

Below is a newspaper article published shortly after Mary’s marriage to William Frederick Oates. It is of interest to note that Mary and William married in Mexborough because Saint Margaret’s Church in Swinton had suffered a catastrophic fire in the year previous.

MEXBOROUGH & SWINTON TIMES
FRIDAY, AUGUST 5, 1898

WEDDING AT SWINTON.

A most fashionable and interesting wedding was solemnised at the Mexborough Parish Church, on Tuesday last, by the Rev. W. J. Peacey, vicar of Swinton. The contracting parties were Miss Mary Alice Walker, daughter of Mrs. Walker, of North View, Swinton, and Mr. William Frederick Oates, third son of Mr. William Oates, butcher, of Barnsley. Mrs. Walker, mother of the bride, has, until just recently, been manageress of the Swinton branch of the Barnsley British Co-operative Society, an appointment Mrs. Walker has held for 18 years. Mr. Oates, the bridegroom, has for some time been employed in the drapery department of the Swinton Stores, and the bride has also assisted in the grocery department. Both parties are consequently well-known in the district, and have won the esteem and respect of all with whom they have come in contact. A large number of people were present at the church, and witnessed a very pretty scene. The bride was most charmingly attired in a magnificent dress of slate Bengaline silk, trimmed with white accordion pleting chiffon with opal sash. She wore a hat of white velvet with chiffon and orange blossoms and plumes, and she also carried a shower bouquet, the gift of the bridegroom.

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Swinton Barnsley British Co-operative Society

The bridesmaids were Miss Sarah Oates, Tinsley, cousin of the bridegroom, Miss Mellars, Swinton, cousin of the bride, Miss L. Kenyon, Swinton, and Miss Hilda Walker, Oldham, niece of the bride. Miss Oates and Miss Mellars were becomingly dressed in slate Bengaline cord, trimmed with cream silk and chiffon. They wore black velvet hats with black sequin lace and plumes. They carried shower bouquets, which were presented by the bridegroom. Miss L. Kenyon and Miss Hilda Walker looked extremely lovely in dresses of cream alpaca, trimmed with cream lace and ribbons with cream picture-hats to match. They carried baskets of flowers. The bridegroom’s present to the bride was a magnificent gold curb bracelet, whilst the bride presented the bridegroom with a handsome diamond ring. The bridegroom’s gifts to the bridesmaids were gold bangles with pearls to Miss Oates and Miss Mellars, and gold brooches with pearls to Miss Walker and Miss Kenyon.

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North View (third house from left)

The wedding party, after leaving church, and being plentifully besprinkled with confetti, drove to the studio, Swinton, where the wedding breakfast was held, at which upwards of 70 guests were present, among them being the Vicar, the Rev. W. J. Peacey. The happy pair left by the 6 p.m. train for London, where the honeymoon is to be spent. The bride’s travelling dress was of blue Bengaline cord, trimmed with pale blue silk and chiffon, and she wore a pale blue hat to match.

Below will be found a list of the handsome collection of presents, which were of a most costly character:- Mrs. Walker (mother of the bride), cheque; Mr. Oates Barnsley, (father of the bridegroom), cheque; Mr. and Mrs. Eaton, carvers and rests; Mr. and Mrs. Addy, silver fruit-dish; Mrs. Hardy (Swinton), sugar dredger; Misses L. and E. Kenyon (Swinton), silver sweet dish; Mr. Hart and Mr. Ford, silver and glass fruit vase; Mr. and Mrs. Powell (Barnsley), oak and silver biscuit box; Mrs. Kenyon and boys (Swinton), silver sardine dish; Master Herbert Oates (Wakefield), silver and glass batter dish; Mr. Roseveare and Miss Mellars (Swinton), silver hot-water jug; Miss Oates (Tinsley), silver and glass jam dish; Mrs. Meades, silver and glass biscuit jar; Miss Amy Meades, pair of silver salts; Mr. and Mrs. Frankish (Barnsley), silver and glass salts; Misses F. and E. Crowther (Swinton), silver and glass jam dish; Mr. J. Burgess (Swinton), clock; Misses Atkinson (Doncaster), silver cake knife; Mr. and Mrs. A. Oates (Barnsley), timepiece; Miss Hilda and Mr. Ernest Walker (Oldham), plated tea-pot; Mr. and Mrs. Hamilton (Swinton), copper kettle; Mr. and Mrs. A. Green (Swinton), brass kettle stand; Mr. Mrs., and Miss Midgley (Barnsley), silver and glass butter dish; Mr. and Mrs. Wilson (Hoyland Nether), china dessert service; Mrs. Scragg (Birmingham), silk handkerchiefs and gloves; Master G. A. Oates (Barnsley), work basket; Messrs. Brailsford (Rotherham), Pinder (Rotherham), and Price (Sheffield), chamber service and trinket set; Mrs. Gelder (Swinton), ornaments; Mr. and Mrs. Yarnold (Swinton), china cheese dish; Mr. J. W. Walker, ornaments; Misses Rodgers and Yates (Swinton), fancy photo frame; Miss A. Walker (Barnsley), oak jewel case; Mr. Hinchcliffe (Swinton), silver-mounted pipe; Mrs. Hartley (Swinton), ornaments; Mr. J. H. Hirst (Barnsley), fancy flower stand; Mrs. and Miss Micklethwaite (Barnsley), cruet and spoons; Mrs. Fairclough (Gawber), embroidered pillow cases; Miss Mellars (Carlton, Worksop), quilt; Miss M. Walker (Barnsley), satin wall pockets; Mrs. Turton (Swinton), cushion covers; Miss M. Crowther and Mr. Moore, satin table centre; Mrs. Adams, pin cushion; Mr. and Mrs. Fred Hall (Barnsley), oak tray; Mr. and Mrs. W. H. Chambers (Swinton), eiderdown quilt; Mrs. Oliver (Swinton), pin cushion; Mr. and Mrs. Joe Walker (Oldham), plush antimacassars and cushion; Mr. and Mrs. H. Walker (Gawber), plush cushions; Mrs. Early (Rotherham), embroidered duchess covers and toilets.

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Richard Walker & Sarah Ann Mellars

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Swinton Barnsley British Co-operative Society

Richard Walker, born circa 1832 in Barugh, Barnsley, is my third great grand uncle and son of Joseph Walker and Sarah Leech.

In 1858, in Darton, Barnsley, Richard married Elizabeth Howcroft. Together, they issued two children, called, Bertha and Joe.

Richard’s wife, Elizabeth, died in 1862 in Gawber, Barnsley. Richard married again, in 1865 in Saint Thomas the Apostle Church, Gawber, to Sarah Ann Mellars. Richard and Sarah issued three children, called, John William, Arthur and Mary Alice.

Saint Thomas the Apostle

Richard was a Stonemason, like his father, but by the time the 1871 Census was conducted, Richard was a Stonemason and Grocer. By the time the 1881 Census was conducted, Richard was the Store Manager of the Cooperative Store, Church Street, Gawber. At some point between 1881 and 1891, Richard and his family moved to Swinton, near Rotherham and Richard died there on 3rd January 1891.

MEXBOROUGH & SWINTON TIMES.
JANUARY 9, 1891.

WALKER. – January 3, at 30, Station street, Swinton, Richard Walker, stone mason, aged 58.

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North View (third house from left)

Three months after Richard’s death when the 1891 Census was conducted, his wife, Sarah, was the Store Manager at 30 Station Street. 30 Station Street was the address of the Barnsley British Cooperative Society in Swinton and I discovered that this address is currently the location of the Salvation Army Charity Shop, where, coincidentally, my mother worked as a volunteer for around seventeen years. I suspect though that 30 Station Street originally incorporated what is now the Cinamon Indian Cuisine Restaurant (formerly a branch of the Yorkshire Bank).

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Richard & Sarah’s grave

Sarah moved into her daughter’s home, North View, Station Street, after she retired.

Sarah died in July 1906 and below is her obituary.

MEXBOROUGH AND SWINTON TIMES, SATURDAY, JULY 21, 1906

SWINTON NOTES AND NEWS.

We regret to hear of the death of Mrs. S. A. Walker, of Station Street, Swinton. For many years, more than twenty, Mrs. Walker was the manageress of the Co-operative Stores, during which time she won the respect and esteem of a very large circle of friends who will be sorry to hear of her demise. The deceased lady who lived with her daughter, Mrs. Oates, of Station Street, had been indisposed for a considerable time, and her death was not altogether unexpected. The interment took place on Thursday at Gawber Cemetery, near Barnsley.