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Few of Our

When it became time for us to reluctantly retire from canal boating we purchased a static holiday caravan at St. Audries Bay, West Quantoxhead on the North Somerset Coast. Time has moved on and late in 2010 we had to decide to sell the caravan when the site owners told us that they would not honour the agreed five year extension to our contract.

Caveat Emptor!!!

The Garden of our Holiday Home at St. Audries Bay, West Quantoxhead

Researching The Family Tree

Hayes House Farm. Staffordshire.

The family farm of the Lovatts. Whose daughter, Florence Annie was Philips grandmother. We think she is the one with the fizzy hair! (A family trait!)


We intend to add here extracts from our family tree.

 Philips 3rd. Great Aunt, Elizabeth Newman was born in 1783 in the village of Adlestrop, Gloucestershire. It is assumed that she came to Gloucester to work in service where she met and married Jose Antonio Dos Santos on the 3rd September 1803.

It is reported that Jose a
rrived Monday 8th Aug 1803 on yacht Bon Success carrying cargo of wine for Quarington & Saunders. Some reports at the time named the vessel as Tres Reis.

Jose Antonio Dos Santos was the owner and captain of a Portuguese vessel claimed to have been the first ship to open the City of Gloucester as a port (prior, of course, to the construction of the canal and docks). The story, told in a letter published in the Gloucester Mercury on 12th of October, 1872 is as follows:

The Port of Gloucester was opened in the latter part of July, 1803 by a brig named Tres Reis,of Oporto, with a cargo of wine consigned Quarington & Saunders, Wine Merchants of the city. She was commanded and owned by Don Joseph Antonio Dos Santos, who was at the same time a Consul of Portugal, Spain and Great Britain.

The ship was navigated up the River Severn by a pilot named Cope and the journey took six weeks, owing to the necessity of waiting for the tides to bring her in, in the process she was so much damaged by dragging along the sands that she afterwards had to go into dock at Liverpool, at a cost of nearly £200.

During the six weeks the vessel lay moored at the Quay (opposite the old gasworks) the twenty years old Captain courted and married a Gloucester girl, (Elizabeth Newman)who accompanied him when he left the town. Several years later they returned to Gloucester, where they settled and carried on a business  for many years manufacturing clay tobacco pipes in Black Dog yard.

It is only since our Granddaughter Katie was born that we started to research the family tree. Philip thought that  his fathers family were from Cheshire. In fact the Millers are traced back to Essex. Philip Grandmother  is a Newman and her family are one of the oldest in the Gloucestershire village of Addlestrop on the Gloucestershire/Oxfordshire border.

 Edward Thomas (1878-1917), who was killed in action during the First World War, was a poet and essayist chiefly remembered for his poem Adlestrop which recalled the sudden peace and serenity of a village railway station in the days prior to the First World War.

Yes.  I remember Adlestrop—

The name, because one afternoon

Of heat the express-train drew up there

Unwontedly.  It was late June.


The steam hissed.  Someone cleared his throat.

No one left and no one came

On the bare platform. What I saw

Was Adlestrop—only the name


And willows, willow-herb, and grass,

And meadowsweet, and haycocks dry,

No whit less still and lonely fair

Than the high cloudlets in the sky.


And for that minute a blackbird sang

Close by, and round him, mistier,

Farther and farther, all the birds

Of Oxfordshire and Gloucestershire.


Edward Thomas