Donald Morgan Correspondence with Alan Stripp

Donald Morgan wrote a letter to Alan Stripp, author and historian, in 1995, which represents the only written explanation of his time at Bletchley Park before he died in 1997. The book he refers to is “Codebreakers: The Inside Story of Bletchley Park” edited in 1993 by Alan Stripp and Harry Hinsley. Continue reading →
Last updated on 16 August 2020 by E Morgan

First Day at Bletchley Park

In the first half of 1941, Pamela Downing was still studying at the Birmingham School of Art. On 28 Jul 1941, according to her mother Molly‘s diary, she learnt that she had failed to secure another year at the college. Both her parents had served in the First World War and it was clear that Pamela who had just turned 21 ought to be doing something a little more positive for the war effort. Continue reading →
Last updated on 19 July 2020 by E Morgan

Hut 6, Bletchley Park Reunion 1981

The Hut 6, Bletchley Park Reunion in May 1981 was the first big gathering after almost 40 years of secrecy. It was a significant challenge to reach as many people as possible as all official records had been deliberately destroyed. Pamela Morgan (née Downing) who served in Hut 6 from Oct 1941 to Aug 1945 was amongst a small circle of Bletchley friends who started the process. According to documents kept in her archive 133 people were contacted and 79 came to the reunion (see below) which took place in London on 9 May 1981. Continue reading →
Last updated on 17 May 2020 by E Morgan

VE Day at Hut 6, Bletchley Park

Pamela Downing served in Hut 6 at Bletchley Park as a civilian from 13 Oct 1941 to 29 Aug 1945. Hut 6 was at the heart of German Army and Air Force Intelligence Code Breaking. She was engaged with a team working round the clock in an intense environment repeatedly processing and entering coded messages directly into Enigma/Typex machines. We have three photographs of her and her colleagues from Hut 6 (and a few from Hut 3) celebrating VE Day. These are rare examples of the very few taken at Bletchley throughout the period. Continue reading →
Last updated on 19 June 2020 by JJ Morgan

William Hayward of Little Wenlock, died 1639

William Hayward of Little Wenlock died in 1639 and left a will. He was the son of William Hayward, who had died in 1602. William was the father of two sons, George and William Hayward. It is clear he was also the grandfather of a fourth generation, William Hayward  (1642-1708), who married Mary Pudsey in Trysull, Staffs in 1665. It is less clear whether the son, George, or the son William, is the father of this fourth William. Continue reading →
Last updated on 27 March 2020 by JJ Morgan

Humphrey Slaney of the Hem, Shropshire

There is an entry in the Holy Trinity, Much Wenlock parish register for the burial of Humphrey Slaney of “the Hemme” on 3 Oct 1603. It seems very likely he is the father of Richard Slaney also of the Hem who leaves a will dated 1620. Continue reading →
Last updated on 10 March 2020 by JJ Morgan

Thomas Madstard, Mercer, of Stourbridge

Thomas Madstard was a wealthy merchant based in Elizabethan Stourbridge. He died and left a will dated 1587. His wife, Mary, and unmarried second daughter, Ann, also left wills, from which we can build a picture of their life and family. Continue reading →
Last updated on 13 January 2020 by JJ Morgan

RIchard Crosse of Sedgley

The Court of Chancery document C2/JasI/C24/13 in the National Archives perhaps provides some intriguing evidence about the relationship between the Crosse family and the Whitehouse family in Coseley, in the parish of Sedgley, Staffordshire, in the mid 17th century. Continue reading →
Last updated on 26 January 2020 by JJ Morgan

William Baker of Coseley

William Baker, a yeoman of Coseley, died and left a will in 1696. This will identifies him as the father of Elizabeth Shaw the wife of Richard Shaw of Cinder Hill, Sedgley. Elizabeth Baker had married Richard Shaw on 9 Nov 1691 in All Saints Sedgley. Continue reading →
Last updated on 6 December 2019 by JJ Morgan

Allen Basil Bratton

Allen Basil Bratton was born in Shrewsbury in 1890 the son of Doctor James Allen Bratton. His father died when he was 3. Continue reading →
Last updated on 30 September 2019 by JJ Morgan

William Barnesley of Trysull, died 1571

William Barnesley of Trysull in Staffordshire died and left a will written on 28 Mar 1571. He is described as a Yeoman and is the grandfather of the William Barnesley, who died in 1640. It would appear to be this grandson William, son of his eldest son Thomas, who succeeded in adopting the Coat of Arms of the Barnesley family of Bromsgrove in about 1597, proving the common line of descent with the Barnesleys of Barnesley Hall. Certainly his will shows a number of important connections with the landed and merchant classes in Elizabethan South Staffordshire. Continue reading →
Last updated on 3 February 2020 by JJ Morgan