William Critchley was born in Sutton, St Helens in 1795. Known as ‘Billy’ he was a butcher and had a farm at Brown Edge. The land called Brown Edge was situated on both sides of the road in Nutgrove near the position of the York Hotel today. On the 1871 census his house was called Rock Field View because the land opposite his house was called Rock Field. Coincidentally, one hundred years later his great granddaughter, Elizabeth Gent (nee Critchley) bought a house called Rock View House which had been built on the land called Rock Field, the exact piece of ground which Billy’s house had overlooked and had been instrumental in the naming of his house. In addition to his land at Brown Edge, Billy also owned a field situated between the traffic lights at Elephant Lane and the pub – a shopping area today.
Land rented by William Critchley in the Tithe Apportionment Schedule of Sutton, St Helens, Lancashire (1840)
A Tithe Apportionment Schedule (1840) was produced for Sutton. The above map c1850s, shows the five areas where William Critchley was mentioned in the tithe schedule.
|Area No.||Shading Colour||Landowner||Occupier||Description|
|778||Orange||Frances Nuttall||William Critchley||Big Brown Hedge (Meadow)|
|779||Purple||Frances Nuttall||William Critchley||Big Brown Hedge (Garden)|
|780||Red||Frances Nuttall||William Critchley||Big Brown Hedge (Garden)|
|781||Turquoise||Frances Nuttall||William Critchley||Little Brown Hedge (Meadow)|
|791||Green||Mary Haddock||William Critchley||Elephant Hey (Meadow)|
Billy married Elizabeth (Betty) Shuttleworth on 6 May 1824 at Farnworth Chapel near Prescot. Their marriage certificate (below) shows that they were married by licence rather than banns. This meant that they didn’t have to wait 3 weeks for the calling of banns in the church before marrying. We can’t be sure, however, that they were in a rush to marry as people sometimes chose to be married by licence as it cost more than banns and could be used as a status symbol. The other interesting point is that they both signed their names rather than making a mark.
They had 10 children, one of which, Margaret (christened 22 Feb 1826), died in infancy.
|Name||Place(s) of Residence||Life Dates||Married|
|Margaret Critchley||St Helens||1826-||John Appleton (1822-1868) & James Aspinall|
|James Critchley||Nutgrove & St Helens & West Derby||1828-1890||Mary Bray (1834-)|
|Ellen Critchley||St Helens||1830-1882||Charles Mather (1825-1886)|
|John Critchley||Eccleston & St Helens||1832-1907||Martha Robinson (1832-1893)|
|Thomas Critchley||St Helens||1834-1902||Catherine Hurst (1840-1866) & Ann Saggerson (1834-1876) & Jane Saggerson (1855-1927)|
|William Critchley||Eccleston & St Helens||1836-1891||Elizabeth (1837-)|
|Joseph Critchley||Liverpool & Wirral||1839-1924||Sarah Stoner (1850-1923)|
|Elizabeth Critchley||St Helens & Kirkdale & Everton||1840-1883||Thomas Cadman (1834-1905)|
|Henry Critchley||Eccleston & St Helens||1844-1903||Mary Ann Formby (1844-1916)|