James Owen of Penrhos

and his descendants
Click on picture for more childhood pictures.

Isabel's sister, Mary Brown (aka Starkey), was born on 23 April 1886 at 1 Chapel Place, Tranmere, when her father, Henry, was a baker journeyman. By 1891 her mother was living with Harry Starkey and Mary had become known as Mary Starkey. In the 1911 census she was in service with Francis Preston, a barrister, and his family at 5 Howbeck Road, Oxton, Birkenhead.

That same census showed Septimus R Williams, a self-employed marine insurance broker, and Mary R Williams were living at 12 Lorne Road, Birkenhead, with their four children. In 1907 Mary had been given a family bible for her 21st birthday, inscribed as being a gift from the Master and Mistress at 12 Lorne Road, Birkenhead, and at the time of her marriage to John Edward Jones (b 19 August 1884, Llanfair Caereinion), on 21 November 1917 at Parkfield Chapel, Birkenhead, she was a 'cook domestic' living at 12 Lorne Road; Harry Starkey and her employer, Mary R Williams, were the witnesses. This would suggest a close association with the Williams family over a number of years. John Jones was an Insurance Agent of Neston in the Wirral so he too may have been employed by Septimus Williams. Mary and John's son was born in 1918. Tragically, Mary died on 21 June 1921, at Parade House, Parkgate, less than three weeks after the birth of their daughter.

Gilbert S Jones I was told that the children went to live in Llanfair Caereinion where they were looked after by sisters of their father until he remarried in 1925. Gilbert was then brought back to live with them. Their step-mother was a Warrington lady called Elsie Owen. John continued to work in insurance and he died on 5 April 1943 either in Parkgate or in a nearby hospital. His second wife, Elsie, died in October 1965 aged 75, probably in Warrington. Mary, John and Elsie are all interred in Neston Cemetery, Mary in a separate grave.

Mary and John's son Gilbert Starkey Jones (right), was born on 10 October 1918. I was told that his childhood with his father and step-mother in Neston - I believe he was there in 1939 - was not a happy one and his daughter reported that he was reluctant to talk about his early life. Apart from being taken to visit one of the family homes in Birkenhead and to visit an "Uncle Harry" in hospital he remembered nothing about his mother's side of the family.

Gilbert married Margaret Elizabeth Davies on 3 July 1946 [Coventry]. Margaret died in a Birkenhead hospital on 4 December 2015 and Gilbert in a Southport care home on 14 October 2016, soon after his 98th birthday. They are survived by their son and daughter, grandchildren and great grandchildren.  >