Above: 1926 OS map of Old Heton. There appear to be many changes to the buildings at Old Heton and it's not known if Old Heton Farm is the present Castle Heaton House. Castle Heaton is a farm of 638.28 acres and Old Heton is said to be 900 acres on the 1861 census. The estate was recently sold by Strutt and Parker whose photographs are below.

William Grey and Jane Jobson.

William Grey aged 15 can be found on the 1841 census for Old Heaton in the Parish of Norham, Chapelry of Cornhill. (Ages on the 1841 census were rounded up, actually he was about 18, later censuses say he was born in 1823.) At the time the census called the county Durham and the area Norhamshire. He was living with his father John a farmer aged about 60 and his mother Margaret aged about 50, (actually about 53). He had an elder brother John aged about 25, (actually 26) and younger sister Mary, about 15 and brother James aged 12. They were all born in the county. Two of his younger sisters both called Margaret had already died and been buried at Cornhill. The family had one female servant. His older brother George aged 26, born in 1815 and Edward, 23 born in 1818 are absent. George may already be living at Middle Ord given to him by his Uncle George. Edward was said to be of Blinkbonny, a farm north of Flodden Hill. The other families living at Old Heaton were agricultural labourers with their families, three millers at Old Heaton Mill, and a blacksmith, a total of 75 people in all.


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The Grey Family of Old Heton: William Grey and Jane Jobson
10 years later in 1851 his brother George, 34, was head of the household at Old Heaton, living with his widowed mother Margaret 63, and brother John, 36, farming 900 acres and employing 12 men, 8 women and 6 boys. The census has more detail about the community describing it as including Old Heaton Mill, Old Heaton, Old Heaton Moor, and New Heaton. John the eldest son’s birthplace is Twizell Castle. George the next oldest birthplace is Old Heaton. It is possible that their parents moved from Twizell to Old Heaton between 1815 and 1817.
Left from : History, Directory, and Gazetteer, of the Counties of Durham and Northumberland 1832

The Jobsons. Jane Jobson was born at North Bebside in about 1834. She can be found on the 1841 census at Sturton Grange in the parish of Warkworth, aged 8. Her father Christopher Jobson, farmer, aged 65, her mother Jane Jobson aged 43, and siblings Christopher, 14, Ann, 12, William 10, John 7 and Joseph 5. There are two female servants. A handbook to Alnwick Castle exists dated Oct 22 1850 given to master Jos Jobson.

By 1851, her father had died. Her mother Jane aged 56 was now head of the household at Sturton Grange House, her occupation was “proprietor of houses, farms 400 acres of land”. The note “8 male 5 female” must refer to her employees. With her is Ann 22, unmarried daughter, William, son, 20, a farm steward, and Jane daughter aged 18. They have one servant and a visitor: 6 year old Annie Orange, born in Bedlington.

Part of the farm at Sturton Grange. Put up for sale as a holiday let in April 2013 by turvey westgarth

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In 1861 William can be found at Woodhorn. His birthplace is Old Heaton. He is 38, born about 1823, married and a colliery agent living at Demesne house with one female servant aged 18. He is head of the household but shares the building with the parish clerk/ schoolmaster and his wife and their 6 children.

In the same year his wife Jane was recorded as living with her mother Jane at Waterloo Place in Cowpen in Blyth, with her son John Grey aged 10 months, born in Woodhorn. Her sister Ann Duncan is also there with her three children born in Amble. There is one female servant and a visitor called Mary Flynn. The next child is born at Heaton and the following two children appear to be born in Horncliffe on the River Tweed. Is it possible that William returned to Heaton and farmed at Horncliffe before farming at Tindal? His son John is recorded attending Ford school in 1867.

By the 1871 census the family are living at Tindal House Farm House, Twizell. William is now 48 with his wife Jane, 38 and their children, Margaret, 6 and George 4. Both these children were said to be born at Horncliffe. Possibly the older children were away at school? William's birthplace has been written as Heaton and changed to Cornhill. His wife Jane was born at Bebside. They have two female general servants. In the 1871 census for Waterloo Road, Horton, Morpeth, there is a Jane Jobson widow, born in Harrington who appears to be Jane’s mother, living with her grandson Christopher Grey aged 6 born in Heaton. They have one domestic servant. There is a Christopher Grey’s birth registered at Berwick in 1863.

By 1881 aged 59 William was retired and living in Gibson Street, Newbiggin. His two children Margaret 16 and George 14 both still at school, are with him. There are no domestic staff. His wife Jane is a visitor at No 3 Osborne Avenue in Jesmond, Newcastle with the family of John Dent a shipbroker born in Blyth and his wife Mary Dent and their 3 children, all born in Blyth. They have 3 domestic servants and another visitor called William Bell who is a metal merchant.

William Grey died at the age of about 63 in about 1885.

William's wife Jane does not seem to have been much at home. In 1891 aged 57 she was widowed and living in Bedford House, (between Bedford Place and Bensham Road) Gateshead with her son William 29, who is single and a "general practitioner (Duly Qualified) Surg" born at Woodhorn, and her daughter Marg 25 born at Horncliffe. He has one general servant.

By 1901 aged 68 she was living on her own means, with her daughter Margaret, who is 28 and single, at Dial Place in Warkworth. The family next door are John Grey single aged 74 a joiner and carpenter Employer, born in Warkworth and Mary E Grey his sister, aged 69 also born in Warkworth but this may be a coincidence.

Jane died in Warkworth on 27 March 1902 at the age of 69 and was buried at Woodhorn. In her will administrated by Margaret Jane Grey her daughter who was still single she left: £102 19s 6d.

John Grey and Sarah Ann Kendall.

John was born in Woodhorn in about 1861. He can be found at the age of 10 months with his mother Jane and Grandmother Jane Jobson at Waterloo Place in Cowpen in Blyth. Her Aunt Ann Duncan is also there with her three children born in Amble. There is one female servant and a visitor called Mary Flynn.

His descendants record that John was educated at Ford from 1865/6. His name is in the Ford records for 1867. Louisa, Marchioness of Waterford, created the biblical scenes which cover the walls of the school. Children who attended the school were depicted in many of the paintings. Later he possibly went to school in Berwick. So far he has not been found on the 1871 census. There is a John Grey at boarding school in Newcastle aged 8 born in Newlands. A bible dated 1876 is inscribed by Jane to her son John when he was about 16, perhaps at this point he was being sent away?

Family history says he met and fell in love with his cousin Christian Margaret Grey, but she married another cousin George Grey of Milfield in 1878 and the two men never spoke again. Washing his hands of the Grey family he went to work for the Lambton Colliery.

In 1881 the census for 27 Waterloo Place Cowpen, Blyth has Jane Jobson 89, with her daughter Anne Duncan, aged 51, annuitant, widower, and John Grey grandson, unmarried, aged 20 Clerk in Colliery offices. It says he was born at Newbiggin, which is the nearest place to Woodhorn.

John married Sarah Ann Kendall in 1890 in Morpeth, when he was 29. In 1891 he can be found at South Togston aged 30 Cashier (Colliery), his wife Sarah A. aged 24, born at Clifton in Yorkshire, with their son William one month old born at Togston. They have a nurse; a widow of 64 called Thomasina Robinson.

In 1901 John is 40, Colliery cashier, was living at the village of South Togston, there is no street named, with Sarah aged 34, his son William 10, John J aged 5 and Norman K aged 6 months all the children born in Togston.

By 1911, now 50, he was living at the Manor House, Broomhill, Acklington, is still a colliery cashier, (Mining). His wife Sarah was 44. The children are recorded as born at Chevington, which is just south of Togston. William, 20, an engineering apprentice, John Ivor, 15, Norman K. 10 both at school, and one domestic servant. The house has 8 rooms and the census was filled in by John himself. Family history says that he was eventually made company secretary, was governor of the local school, a master of the Freemasons and gave advice to Alnwick Council.

He died on 31 March 1933, at the age of 73, the administration of his will going to his son Norman Kendall Grey. He left £812 5s 10d. Sarah died on 27 April 1947.


"Jasper Gibson in 1815, sold the estate to John and Christopher Jobson of Bebside. As a farm of 408 acres, the Grange was, in 1848, offered for sale by public auction, and in the following year was conveyed by Mr. Christopher Jobson to Mr. Matthew Liddell of Newcastle, and by the latter was given in exchange about 1860 to the duke of Northumberland for lands at Prudhoe. "
Woodhorn Colliery now a museum © Copyright Chris Allen and licensed for reuse under Creative Commons Licence
It is known that William had a strong interest in the Heton pits, which were privately owned by the Lambton family. The farms of Northumberland look very neat and green today but the area is also rich in coal and many districts had a local mine. On the 1851 census William can found aged 26, a colliery agent, living at Cowpen Lodge with his sister Mary aged 22 and one female servant. Cowpen, Blyth, may refer to the Cowpen pits owned by the Ridley family and leased to "Carr and Jobling". William married Jane Jobson in Tynemouth in 1859.

The manor house was pulled down in the 1990s to make way for a new housing development.

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Christian Margaret Grey was courted by her cousin John Grey. When she didn't marry him it caused a rift in the family. This "scunner" meant that John Grey and George Grey of Milfield would stand on Milfield Station Platform and not speak to each other. It took their descendants to mend this rift. In the photograph right the exaggerated handshake between Norman Grey, and Robert Grey (grandson of George) is a reference to this story.

Thanks to Norman's son John for this picture and for the other family photographs on this page.


"John and his brother, Christopher were born at Bebside, near Blyth, Northumberland and during the Peninsular War (1808-14), they made money in shipping and invested in land. A great proportion of ships built locally in 1815 were built for Blyth owners, and it was this class of vessel chiefly that were employed in the last stages of the war." From A Family of Pilgrims by John Stephenson.
Left: Jane Jobson's mother.
John Grey with his wife Sarah Ann nee Kendall and children William, John Ivor and baby Norman Kendall. Cabinet photograph by J. A. Pringle Amble. About 1901?
Sarah Grey with son Norman Kendall. Cabinet photo by W.R. Chapman in Amble.
John Grey photographed at Leighton Studios , 124 Northumberland Street, Newcastle on Tyne.
Right: Jane Jobson
Left: The Manor House Broomhill hosting the Broomhill Presbyterian church garden party. The pictures show two musicians and a large number of women present.
The Grey family at Jervaulx Abbey in Yorkshire in 1914. Sarah came from Yorkshire. Standing left Ivor John Grey who died in 1916, in flat cap John Grey his father, Norman in school cap, John's wife Sarah smiling and seated right William the oldest son. The two ladies at the back may be Kate and Lel Sarah's sisters.
The Grey family a year later in 1915 near Ashgill Force, Alston in Cumbria. Sarah with her sisters seated and on the ground Norman with his father John.
John and Sarah Grey
June 1941. Norman married Dorinda Patterson and William married Hilda Russell. The photo shows from left to right Dorinda's father, Dorinda, Hilda Grey nee Russell, Dorinda's mother, and Sarah Grey with sitting right William, Norman's older brother, who married Hilda, and Freda their daughter. Presumably the photographer was Norman.
Above: The turned down collars and centre parted hair and moustaches could be 1890s. The unknown setting is an ivy clad front door with a handle and bell. Written on reverse " William Grey brother of John Grey, Norman's father". William was born in about 1862. In 1881 William can be found as a medical student at 38, Bensham Road , Gateshead at the house of George Douglas GP and his family. Ten years later, in 1891, he is still living in Bensham Road, a GP himself and living with his widowed mother Jane and sister Margaret. After this census he has not been found. He may be the William Grey who is recording dying in 1895. He may be with his brothers in the photograph including John and possibly George seen in the cabinet photograph above. Christopher may have died young. No more information has been found about George. Margaret Jane is on the 1901 census with her mother, she is recorded as 28, living at Dial Place in Warkworth. The family next door are John Grey single aged 74 a joiner and carpenter Employer, born in Warkworth and Mary E Grey his sister, aged 69 also born in Warkworth but this may be a coincidence.
Left: A cabinet portrait with "George Grey brother of John Grey Norman's Father" written on reverse. Bellisario worked at this address 1895-1901

John Ivor Grey was killed in the Great War. "Second Lieutenant John Ivor Grey, 7th Bn. Northumberland Fusiliers. Killed in Action 15th September 1916 aged 21. Son of John and Sarah Ann Grey, of Manor House, Broomhill, Northumberland". Buried Bazentin-le-Petit Communal Cemetery Extension, Somme, France. Plot E.8. His name appears on the Chevington and Broomhill war memorial.
John Ivor Grey known as Ivor, originally captioned "2Lt Gray from Acklington".