Thomas Styles

Thomas Styles was probably born in the small Worcestershire village of Kington in 1739. Importantly his will of 1811 identifies his surviving children. These include Sarah Evans, wife of Richard Evans, to whom he left £1000 and who was in fact to die in the year following her father. Thomas Styles was a wealthy inn holder and his family formed a very natural alliance with the Evans’s of the Red Lion in Wolverhampton. The picture below shows the “Crown Inn” in Stone Staffordshire that he appears to have acquired later in his life. It is more than likely, in fact, that he had it built as the image would appear to be advertising a new inn and its strategic position as an interchange of coach routes between Chester, Liverpool, London, Bath and Bristol

The Crown Inn in Stone Staffordshire in about 1810

The Crown Inn in Stone Staffordshire in about 1810

The Old Swinford (nr Stourbridge) parish register shows that his daughter Sarah married Richard Evans on 27 April 1793. This is a confirmed date from the Evans bible. A later entry shows that Elizabeth Evans married William Styles in 1795. Elizabeth is almost certainly Richard’s younger sister, making this a double marriage alliance between the two inn owning families.  We know that Thomas’s son William Styles, proprietor of the ‘Hotel’ in Temple Row in Birmingham, died in 1809. It seems highly probable that his wife Elizabeth Styles, Richard’s younger sister, has been confused in family trees of the Evans drawn up in the 1930’s. This was presumably because her grave of 1808 was in the Tettenhall churchyard. In family histories passed down through Sarah Evans (b 1828) and Aunt Og (b 1874) it states that Elizabeth Styles came from Powick in Worcestershire. Although the Styles family definitely come from Worcestershire no other documentary mention can be found about Powick.

Thomas Styles’s children are indeed all to be found baptized in the parish register of Kington and Grafton Flyford. By the 1790’s though, the interests in Inns extended much further across the West Midlands – Pershore, Stourbridge, Wolverhampton and significantly Birmingham. Latterly he is known as an inn holder of Stone in Staffordshire in his will papers and indeed in the will of his son Thomas Styles who dies in 1816. Thomas, the elder, married twice. His first wife was Mary Leight, the mother of all his children, who must have died in 1788. He married Ann Tolley in 1789 and seems to have moved the focus of his business interests further north to Stone after 1800. His eldest son George lived in Offmoor, near Kidderminster and is described as ‘Gent’. Richard Styles the youngest son is described as a farmer from West Bromwich. One other grandchild is mentionned in Thomas’s 1811 will and named as Ann Martin. This is the daughter of Ann Styles, Thomas’s oldest child listed as baptised in 1762 in Kington.


Family of Thomas STYLES and Mary LAIGHT

Husband:Thomas STYLES (bap.1739, bur.1811)
Wife:Mary LAIGHT (bap.1737, bur.1788)
Children:Ann STYLES (1762-bef1808)
John STYLES (1765- )
Thomas STYLES (bap.1767, bur.1816)
George STYLES (bap.1768, bur.1837)
Mary STYLES (bap.1770)
William STYLES (bap.1771, bur.1809)
Sarah STYLES (bap.1775, d.1812)
Richard STYLES (bap.1776, d.aft1818)
Marriage18 Oct 1761Kington, Worcestershire

Husband: Thomas STYLES

Name:Thomas STYLES
Father:John STYLES ( – 1755)
Mother:Mary OAKLEY ( – )
Baptism28 Oct 1739Kington, Worcestershire
Occupation1793Proprietor of Crown Inn, Stourbridge1
Residence1799Holy Cross, Pershore, Worcestershire
Burial2 Jul 1811St Michaels, Stone

Wife: Mary LAIGHT

Name:Mary LAIGHT
Father:George LAIGHT ( – )
Mother:Elizabeth HUNT ( – )
Baptism22 Mar 1737Crowle, Worcestershire
Burial21 Jul 1788Holy Cross, Pershore, Worcestershire

Child 1: Ann STYLES

Deathbef 1808 (age 45-46)

Child 2: John STYLES

Name:John STYLES

Child 3: Thomas STYLES

Name:Thomas STYLES
Spouse:Mary MASON (1769-aft1851)
Baptism7 Jan 1767Kington with Dormaston
OccupationInn holder
Burial2 Jan 1816Holy Cross, Pershore, Worcestershire

Child 4: George STYLES

Name:George STYLES
Spouse:Mary BABINGTON ( – )
Baptism14 May 1768Kington, Worcestershire
Burial18 May 1837St George, Kidderminster

Child 5: Mary STYLES

Name:Mary STYLES
Baptism3 Apr 1770Grafton Flyford, Worcester

Child 6: William STYLES

Name:William STYLES
Spouse:Elizabeth EVANS (bap.1769, bur.1808)
Baptism29 Aug 1771Grafton Flyford, Worcester
Burial7 Apr 1809St Michael and All Angels, Tettenhall

Child 7: Sarah STYLES

Name:Sarah STYLES
Spouse:Richard EVANS (1768-1841)
Baptism2 Jan 1775Grafton Flyford, Worcester
Death30 Apr 1812Red Lion Inn Wolverhampton
Burial4 May 1812St Michael and All Angels, Tettenhall

Child 8: Richard STYLES

Name:Richard STYLES
Spouse:Ellen ELLWELL (bap.1789, d.1861)
Baptism20 Jun 1776Grafton Flyford, Worcester
Deathaft 1818

Sources and Notes

  • Thomas’s second wife was Ann Tolley, the widow of William Tolley. From her will (written 1802, executed 1812, Proved at Lichfield) it is clear that her maiden name is Ann Brown. Her niece’s husband was William Cornelius Lillyman, Innholder of Liverpool.