Richard Aireton

Son of Richard Long Aireton and Elizabeth Elliman, father of Clarice Aireton and husband of Ann Young

Richard was baptised at Northill, Bedfordshire on 2nd July 1837.  He appears in the 1841 Census  for Northill, aged 4 and in the 1851 Census, aged 13, and already working as an Agricultural Labourer. He presumably had an education, since his sister, Mary, appears as a Scholar, aged 7, in the 1851 Census.

When the family moved to Barkway, Hertfordshire around 1852, Richard must have met Ann Young, baptised in Reed, a small Hamlet adjoining Barkway, on 30th May 1847. They married on 2nd October 1864 in Barkway, According to the 1861 Census, Richard lived with his family in Biggleswade and was, at the age of 23, a Gamekeeper - see his father's notes for details of the Census. On his marriage Richard was still a Gamekeeper in Biggleswade and his father a Coachman.  Ann was the daughter of Daniel Young, a Blacksmith of Barkway, and Amy. Both Richard and Ann signed their own names on the church marriage entry.

Richard and Ann had the following children:

Elizabeth Ann  Aireton  baptised in St Leonard's Old Warden, Bedfordshire, on 23rd August 1865. According to the 1881 Census, Elizabeth was then a Servant and Nursery Maid, aged 15, to the children of the Rev Horace Waller and his wife, Rector of Twywell, Northamptonshire

Emily Aireton born c. 1867

Edward George Aireton born c. 1869. He married in mid in early 1896

Rebecca Louisa Aireton born c. 1871 and died on 5th September 1876.  She was buried in St Leonard's Churchyard on 7th September 1876

Amy Aireton born c.1872 and died on 21st August 1876. She was buried in St Leonard's on  21st August 1876

Reginald Aireton born 15th March 1875 in Broom, Bedfordshire and baptised in Old Warden on 28th April 1878 He left home to seek his fortune and, in 1899, founded Aireton's Nurseries at Poole, Dorset -  55 acres, which progressively became parts of Poole and Broadstone. He lived to be 96 years of age. He was chairman of the board until the day he died.

He was married, rather late in life, to Margaret Stone and had one son, Reginald George Aireton, born on 5th July 1920 and died in 1984. He in turn had one son, Michael Clive Aireton, born on 16th May 1943.

Ernest Aireton born on 20 December 1877 in Southill and baptised in Old Warden on 28th April 1878.  According to the 1901 Census, he was a first footman at Lindfield in Sussex.

Clarice Aireton born on 19th November 1879

Beatrice Alice Aireton born on 9th February 1882 and baptised at Old Warden on 15th October 1882

By the time of the baptism of Reginald and Ernest, Richard was a Gamekeeper on the Shuttleworth Estate, just outside Old Warden.  According to the 1881 Census, he was by then Head Gamekeeper, living in Keeper's House.  In the house at the time of the Census were all of the surviving children above, except Elizabeth who had left home and Beatrice who had not then been born.

Richard died on 9th February 1886 and was buried at St Leonard's on 12th February 1886.  The gravestone has been removed but a note of the primary elements of the inscription was noted in 1914 as follows:

Richard Airton, died 9th Feb 1886 aged 48

Amy, daughter of above died 21st August 1876, aged 4

Rebecca Louisa, daughter of above died 5th September 1876, aged 5

The 1891 Census records Ann, aged 51 living in Old Warden Village working as a needlewoman. The following children were at home:

Reginald aged 16, a Garden Labourer

Ernest aged 13, an errand boy

Clarice aged 11, a Scholar

Beatrice Alice aged 9, a Scholar

The 1901 Census does not record any Airtons living in Old Warden, although Ernest was a First Footman at Lindfield in Sussex


The Spelling of Aireton or Airton varies from document to document

It has not been established where Richard and his family were between 1865 and 1877, for no baptisms of his children appear at that time in any South Bedfordshire village records, nor is the family evident in the 1871 Census for those villages.

Equally, the baptisms of Emily, Edward and Amy have not yet been found


Census returns for for 1881 and 1891

Baptism, Banns and Marriage records for Old Warden, Northill, Barkway and Stevenage

Clarice's marriage certificate


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