Repository Northumberland Archives Ref No DN/R/3/87/2

Title Deed for Holy Island parish, Northumberland. Date 30 Jan. 1869 Description Annexation of portion of Tithe Commutation and Rent Charge in lieu of tithes arising out of Old Heaton Farm situate in the township of Heaton, Northumberland, for the use of the Vicar of Holy Island, Northumberland. PARTIES Rt. Rev. George Waddington, Dean and Chapter of Durham Rev. John H. Dakyns Joseph Hutchinson Rt. Rev. Charles, Lord Bishop of Durham Samuel Rowlandson Ecclesiastical Commissioners Schedule Landowners Rt. Hon. Charles Augustus, Earl of Tankerville Occupier John Grey

George Grey of Old Heaton. Born 13 August 1815, died 25 August 1865.

George was born on 13 August 1815 according to the Milfield Family tree. He was baptised at Cornhill on 18 March 1816.

On the 1841 census he is absent from his family home at Old Heaton where his parents and brothers John, William and James and sister Mary, are living. He may be the George Gray, farmer, at Brickinside next to Barmoor farm in Lowick.

The Berwick poll book for 1847 has George Grey at Old Heaton, “house and land as occupier.”

In Tweedmouth parish John Burn has Middle Ord as the occupier but George’s Uncle George Grey owns the freehold.

His father died in 1850. On the 1851 census, at the age of 34, he is now head of the household at Old Heaton, farming 900 acres and employing 12 men, 9 women and 6 boys. With his mother Margaret, now a widow, his brother John and his Uncle John Ferguson, assisting shepherd, and one house servant. It is curious that his brother who was the oldest is not the head of household.

The poll book of 1852 shows George at Old Heaton occupying the land. In 1852 when his Uncle George Grey died he left him Middle Ord farm. His mother Margaret died before 1858.

On 7th April 1858 at the comparatively late age of 42 he married Mary Letitia McLaren at Coldstream. Her brother Bartie is probably the B. McLaren who is a witness and M. T. McLaren, may be her other brother Mathew.

George and Mary's daughter Christiana was born on 11 Jan 1860 at Old Heaton. In the 1861 census, he can be found at the age of 41 at Old Heaton, farming 900 acres, employing, 11 men, 9 women and 3 boys with his wife Mary L. 30, his daughter Christiana aged one and his brother John aged 45, with a cook, a house maid and another servant.

His wife Mary died on 11 January 1863. On 6 March 1863 he made a will in which he made his two trustees his daughter’s guardians: Robert George Bolam a land agent of Barmoor and William Douglas a bank agent in Coldstream.

He had a connection with Barmoor as it was from Barmoor that the Middle Ord grass parks were rented out in 1863 and 1864. Possibly he was still farming at Heaton and had an agent run Middle Ord.

George died two years after his wife on 24 August 1865 at the age of 50. It is not certain when he moved to Middle Ord. With his death the Grey family connection to Old Heaton ceased.



John Grey, possibly born 2 November 1813, died about 1881

John Grey was born 2nd November 1813 according to the Milfield Family tree. He was baptised a few years later on 8 November 1815 at Cornhill. The 1881 census has him born about 1815, and the date of his death as born in 1811. Family search records his birth as 16 November 1811.

On the 1841 census in his 20s, he was living with his parents John and Margaret and brothers John, William and James and sister Mary, at Old Heaton. He appears to be the oldest son and was possibly born before his parents moved there.

In his late 30s on the 1851 census he is still at Old Heaton with his mother and his brother George who is put down as head of the household although John is the oldest. It records him as being born at Twizel Castle.

In 1861 he is living with his brother George, and his brother's wife Mary and their daughter Christian aged one at Old Heaton. He is unmarried. He is recorded here as farmer's brother, and in the previous census as farmer's son. This may mean he either couldn't or didn’t work although later censuses say he was a farmer. The household has a cook, and a housemaid.

His brother George died in 1865. John is recorded as the occupier of Old Heaton in a title deed for 1869. The landowner was Rt. Hon. Charles Augustus, Earl of Tankerville.

He has not yet been found on the 1871 census. The area of Old Heaton appears to be missing for 1871 from ancestry.

By 1881, aged 70, he was living alone at a cottage in the village of East Ord, Tweedmouth, his occupation recorded as formerly farmer. The cottage was near Ord House Lodge and may be West Sunnyside.

He died at West Sunnyside, Tweedmouth according to the family tree. His will has not been found.

Above: Twizell Castle and Bridge. Twizell belonged to Sir Francis Blake who worked from about 1770 on the recreation of the castle as a Gothic revival mansion, designed by architect James Nesbit of Kelso. Despite some forty years of work, the project was never completed. When in 1882, the Blakes built Tillmouth Park much of the incomplete Twizell Castle was demolished and the stone used in the new construction.
West Sunnyside House is now a Bed and Breakfast. West Sunnyside Cottage.

John Grey, born 2 November 1813, died about 1881 and George Grey, born 13 August 1815, died 25 August 1865, who both farmed at Old Heaton.

This is the last Will and Testament of me George Gray of Middle Ord in the County of Northumberland Gentleman I give and bequeath all my Personal estate unto my four brothers John Gray Edward Gray William Gray and James Gray in equal shares I devise all my real estate unto Robert George Bolam of Barmoor in the County of Northumberland Land Agent and William Douglas of Coldstream Bank Agent and their heirs upon trust to let the same for any term of years they may think proper not exceeding fifteen years at a rate rent and apply the rents and profits thereof in manner following that is to say To the maintenance and education of my daughter Christian Margaret Gray until she attains the age of twenty one and invest the residue of the said rents and profits on Government or real securities in England until my said daughter shall attain the age of twenty one And when my said daughter shall attain the age of twenty one then I devise all my real estate unto my said daughter Christian Margaret Gray her heirs and assigns for ever and I also bequeath to her all monies which shall have accumulated from the rents of my said real estate but should my said daughter die upon the age of twenty one without leaving a child or children her surviving then and in that case I devise all my said real Estate unto my brother William Gray his heirs and assigns thereto with the following rent charges that is to say the annual rent thereof of One hundred pounds which I give and bequeath to my Brother Edward Gray for life A like rent thereof one hundred pounds a year which I give and bequeath to my brother James Gray for life and an annual rent thereof of fifty pounds which I give and bequeath to my Brother John Gray for life the said rent thereof to be paid half yearly and in case of non payment to be recovered in like manner as rent reserved on a Common devise It is also my Will that should the said Robert George Bolam and William Douglas or either of them die or refuse to act under this my Will it shall be lawful for the acting trustee or any writing under this hand to appoint another trustee in their room and instead of the trustee who shall die or refuse to act under this my Will if neither of them shall accept of the trusts of this my Will then authorise and empower my brother William Gray by writing under this hand to appoint two new trustees in their room and stead and appoint the said Robert George Bolam and William Douglas Trustees and Executors of this my Will and I also appoint them or the Trustees for the time being of this my Will Guardians of my said daughter Christian Margaret Gray during her minority hereby revoking all former Wills by me made In witness whereof I have thereupon to set my hand this sixth day of March in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty three - George Grey - signed by the said George Gray as and for his last Will and Testament in the presence of us present at the same time who at his request in his sight and presence and in the presence of each other have subscribed our names as attesting witnesses that word “sixth” being first inserted and “fifth” struck out Jonathan Rowland Solicitor- Colville Smith Proved at London 30 Sept 1865 by the oaths of Robert George Bolam and William Douglas the executors to whom Admon was granted.
Above: George Grey of Middle Ord's signature from his will. From HMCS Probate Office.
OBITUARY NOTICE—ROBERT GEORGE BOLAM Robert George Bolam of Berwick-on-Tweed, By the death of Mr R. G. Bolam, which occurred very suddenly on 24th June 1899, the Club has lost an old and valued member whose place will not be easily filled. He joined the Club in 1868, and was generally able to attend a meeting or two every year, when his extensive knowledge of the district, not less than the genial good nature with which his information was imparted to others, made his presence always welcome. In the archeology and traditional lore of the Border, more especially on the English side, he took a deep interest, and very few men were more conversant with its topography and family history. Natural history and arboriculture were favourite relaxations, and in a practical way he was also well versed in the geology of Northumberland. Although the many business calls upon his time but seldom allowed him leisure to contribute directly to the "Proceedings," he was ever ready to extend a helping hand to those who were better off in that respect, and any special knowledge which he possessed was always freely placed at the disposal of others. With Dr Hardy his correspondence was voluminous, dating back over very many years, and the information thus acquired was frequently made use of by our late Secretary in drawing up his reports and papers. The editors of the new " County History of Northumberland" were also considerably indebted to him for going over and correcting sheets and supplying details on many ?obecan points, and for the first volume of the series he wrote the chapter on Agriculture. The article on Landowning in which appeared in the local newspapers in commemoration of the Queen's Jubilee in 1887, and it contains so much that is interesting on this extensive subject that it has been thought worth while to reproduce it here. Up till within a few months of his decease Mr Bolam had enjoyed general good health, but an attack of influenza in the spring of last year told heavily upon him, and had affected his vital powers to such an extent that his medical advisers urged him to take a prolonged rest from business. But to a man of his active habits, engrossed as he constantly was with work, it is not an easy matter to leave home on short notice, and not thinking himself so weak as he really had been, the much-needed holiday was delayed until, as the sequence proved, it was too late. In company with his friend, Mr Leather Culley of Fowberry Tower, he left home on Monday, 19th June, for Luss, on Loch Lomond, and it was there that, early on the following Saturday morning, he breathed his last. They had been fishing together on the loch the previous day, and when Mr Culley parted from him in the afternoon he appeared to be in his accustomed health and good spirits, and to be enjoying his holiday. It had been arranged that they should meet again in the beginning of the week, but a Higher Power had decreed otherwise, and the telegram the following morning, announcing that he had quietly passed away in the night, came therefore as a great shock to his many friends and relatives at home. Born on 3lst May 1827, at Way-to-Wooler, of which his father was at that time tenant, the subject of our notice was the second son of the late John Bolam, who afterwards farmed Easington Grange and Glororum, and died in 1874. His forebears had been settled in Northumberland from very early times, and had for many generations back been engaged in agriculture in the county, farming in some instances the land which their ancestors had once owned. Upon leaving school, in 1844, Mr Bolam served his apprenticeship with the late Mr John Bourne of Newcastle, an eminent civil engineer of his day, and while in his office assisted in the survey of a considerable portion of the land taken for railways in Northumberland and the adjoining counties. Several of his old field-books and plans of these early days, still in existence, testify to that great accuracy and attention to detail, which to the end was so characteristic of him; while the sketches, with which they are occasionally interspersed, prove him to have been more than ordinarily proficient with the pencil. After he left Newcastle Mr Bolam was for some years with the late Mr Lowrey, at Barmoor, until at that gentleman’s decease, in 1865, he succeeded to his business as a land agent, and, up to the time of his death, few men have been better known or more highly esteemed in that capacity than he was. His intimate knowledge of all subjects affecting the landed interest made his advice on such matters much sought after, while the reliance placed in his integrity and judgment was frequently shown by both landlord and tenant applying to him to settle knotty points between them.But while his rare aptitude for business and his methodical habits enabled him to get through an enormous amount of work, he never grasped at business, and many persons have reason to remember with gratitude professional services rendered by him gratuitously. With him work was always regarded less as a means of making money than in the light of a duty, which he owed it to himself as well as to his clients to perform to the best of his ability, and he sought no higher reward than the approval of his own conscience. As a sportsman Mr Bolam belonged to the old school, and when time allowed no one could enjoy a country life more than he did, or enter more thoroughly into its pursuits. A good shot with both gun and rifle, he could always be relied upon to give a satisfactory account of himself either in the field or by the covert side, and with the rod he was a past master, especially devoted to fly fishing. He was also an accurate observer, and for many years kept regular records of the arrival and departure of our migratory birds, the highest and lowest temperatures, etc. He also took the keenest interest in all antiquarian matters, and had formed a premium a small but select selection of local antiquities. For many years he had been a member of the Architectural and Archeological Society of Durham and Northumberland, and of the Society of Antiquaries of Newcastle-upon-Tyne. He became a life member of the Royal Agricultural Society and the Highland Society in 1866, and, as representing the estates under his charge, he had served upon the Tweed Commission for more than twenty years, during which time he had also been an active member of its Police Committee. His library contained a rare and valuable collection of local histories and works of reference, and with the contents of his volumes he was intimately acquainted. When particular information was required upon any special point, he was seldom at a loss to know where to turn for it, and no trouble was ever spared to make certain that his information was correct before he would venture to quote it. He was a Churchman, and in politics a staunch Conservative, who had often done yeoman service in the interests of the party at election times. " Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might," was an axiom which he sought to carry out through life, and, with his retirement from the scenes of his labour, Northumberland mourns a son whose loss has left her distinctly poorer.
Robert George Bolam of Barmoor, of Berwick on Tweed and of Weetwood Hall. The trustee of Christian Margaret Grey may have been a relative. There are Greys in his family tree.
History of the Berwickshire Naturalists Club GEORGE BOLAM 267 From his appearance one would have expected him to have lived at least another ten years. His end came suddenly and without warning—no illness and no trying period of incapacity. Those who knew him most intimately realise with gratitude that it was an end such as he would have wished. He had gone into his sanctum to do some writing before retiring for the night, and he almost literally died with his pen in his hand just before midnight on 25th October 1934, within a fortnight of the completion of seventy-five years. The passing of George Bolam, one felt, marked the end of an epoch. He was the last of the great Northumbrian fieldnaturalists of his generation. George Bolam came of a family long settled in the north of Northumberland. The family is of Norman descent, and it is interesting to note that the Barons representing Northumberland at the signing of Magna Charta were Bolam, Ogle, and Delaval. George Bolam was the eldest of the eight children three boys and five girls—of Robert George Bolam of Weetwood Hall. Although Weetwood Hall was the family residence, George Bolam was born on 8th November 1859 at Barmoor, which is close to Weetwood, and only a few miles south-west of Berwick-upon-Tweed. He was educated in the first place at Biddlestone’s School at Northallerton and afterwards at Uppingham. At the age of eighteen he entered the office of his father who was in business as a land agent at Weetwood. Shortly afterwards, in 1877, the business was moved to Berwick- upon-Tweed, where George Bolam resided for the next quarter of a century. George Bolam became a naturalist at a very early age, and he attributed this to the influence of his paternal grandfather who was himself an enthusiastic naturalist. His father, Robert George Bolam, who was a member of the Berwickshire Naturalists’ Club, was more interested in archaeology than natural history, but he had a good knowledge of birds and he took his son George with him wherever he went and trained him in critical observation. George Bolam’s natural history journals, commenced some years earlier, assumed a methodical form, under his grandfather’s guidance, by 1874. The first article from his pen was published in The Field in 1871. He was then twelve years old.
Left: the Poll Book of the Northern Division of the County of Northumberland for 1841.