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7 Fitzjohns Avenue, Hampstead, in 1942

Tue Dec 06, 2016 11:31 am

I would be grateful to hear from readers with local knowledge of Fitzjohns Avenue, Hampstead during WW2 regarding the following:

Emma Carter (nee Lloyd) born 7 June 1862(3?), lived her entire life south of the river Thames as did all of her children. Her death certificate states that she died in Tooting Bec Hospital in June 1942 at the age of 79 years. Enteredon the death certificate under the column Occupation is ‘7 Fitzjohns Ave, Hampstead, widow of Henry Carter, a carman’. Henry died in 1906 and also lived south of the river all his life. The informant was her son Charles who lived in Carshalton, Surrey as did her daughter Maud Bullen with whom she was resident in the 1939 Register.

Can anyone explain what Emma's connection with 7 Fitzjohns Avenue might have been in, or around, 1942 especially as more recently she had been in the Carshalton area. What is the significance of Fitzjohns Avenue on this death certificate?

Thank you for any help given.

Re: 7 Fitzjohns Avenue, Hampstead, in 1942

Tue Dec 06, 2016 2:02 pm

Strange. It makes no sense to start the occupation column with an address. The rest ("widow of....") makes perfect sense and is very typical for a widow. But starting an occupation with an address surely makes no sense.

I can only guess in the absence of an image of the certificate, but is it at all possible that the address is a carry over from another column that is full or a badly written correction???

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Re: 7 Fitzjohns Avenue, Hampstead, in 1942

Tue Dec 06, 2016 4:18 pm

1942 - Post Office London Directory, Fitzjohn's Av, Hampstead, there is no listing for number 7.
1939 electoral register has Nellie Billings, Dorothy Bourton, Molly Kathleen Hindes, and Dorothy Elizabeth Northover at that address.
1939 Register has at number 7 (all single)
Dorothy Bourton, born 15 Aug 98, Matron
Nellie Billings 28 Sep 98, Kitchen Nurse
Molly Hindes 23 Nov 05, House Matron
Freda Watson (later married) 25 Aug 13 Assistant Nurse
+ a redacted entry, a domestic servant, and a parlour maid

In the 1937 Post Office London Directory, 7 Fitzjohn's Av is the Hampstead Hostel for Mothers & Babies.
Ditto 1934

Going back to the electorals
In 1938 the two Dorothy's, Bourton and Northover appeared for the first time, along with Una Mary Thomason.
Previously variously women were listed, Sibyl Rignell being there for a couple of years (she had both parliamentary and local votes)
So, possibly a change may have occured around 1938, it may have become a general nursing establishment, or even a hotel at some stage?
After the war it was part of a convent, along with numbers 3 and 5

Re: 7 Fitzjohns Avenue, Hampstead, in 1942

Tue Dec 06, 2016 7:01 pm

Being honest, I can't really say for sure exactly what establishment was at that address in 1942, or even in 1939. Ancestry have the 1938 PO London Directory, but unfortunately they have mucked up and there is no street directory.
Only staff appear there in the 1939 Register. But these include a Matron and nurse(s). What is a Kitchen Nurse? It may still be the mothers and babies home, but it may not!
An entry from the Probate Calendar, 1944 -
Peters Joseph of 7 Fitzjohns-avenue Hampstead London died 2 January 1944 at New End Hospital Hampstead Administration Llandudno 23 February to Herbert Joe Peters builders clerk. Effects £81 14s. 6d.

Re: 7 Fitzjohns Avenue, Hampstead, in 1942

Wed Dec 07, 2016 2:26 pm

Adrian and Ian,
Thank you both for taking the trouble to respond to my query. I shall try to upload the death certificate to show the occupation column which appears strange.

Ian, like you I have struggled with establishing the exact nature of what was happening at 7 Fitzjohns Avenue. Via internet research I learnt that 3 Fitjohns Ave was associated with the artist Laszlo but this property was acquired by the Sisters of Mercy of the Holy Cross in about 1838 and here wounded soldiers were nursed by them until the end of WW2. They then acquired 5-7 Fitzjohns Avenue as well and here a girls' school was established by the Sisters. This closed in 1985 and the sisters moved to Gravesend. I wrote to the Sister in Charge of the order but did not receive a response, hence my attempt now via this forum to find an answer.

Ian, you have tried hard to help and have pointed my in several good directions with regard to electoral rolls and directories. Thank you so much. I am not sure whether a visit to a library with a local history department might be able to help further but that would require travel and some good planning too.

I am going to try to upload the death certificate which gave me the information but I am not sure how copyright may affect my success in doing so.

Again, thank you for the help given.
Copy death certificate Emma Lloyd
CARTER_(LLOYD)_Emma-(1863-1942)-Death-TootingBecHospital.jpg (803.82 KiB) Viewed 4659 times

Re: 7 Fitzjohns Avenue, Hampstead, in 1942

Wed Dec 07, 2016 8:48 pm

It seems to me to say "of 7 Fitzjohn Avenue Hampstead"
So I can only think that the registrar has put Emma's normal place of residence in the occupation column. As we can see, she died at Tooting Bec Hospital.
There isn't anywhere on those death certificates to tell us what their home address was, if they died elsewhere.
In a way it mirrors Joseph Peters in January 1944, where (according to the probate calendar), he died in hospital, but lived at 7 Fitzjohns Avenue. He was 90 years old apparently. I don't know who he was, but it seems a little unlikely that he had acquired the house as owner or tenant. The probate record contains nothing to indicate that he was particularly wealthy.
All I can suggest is that for a time number 7 was a general nursing home, I believe there were several others in Fitzjohns Avenue. Possibly then Emma may have left south London due to age/infirmity, and was later admitted from a nursing home to hospital as she had bronchial pneumonia.

Re: 7 Fitzjohns Avenue, Hampstead, in 1942

Wed Dec 07, 2016 9:01 pm

Thank you Ian. This sounds very likely and it seems that Emma was mentally frail and if I have researched correctly, the Tooting Bec Hospital catered for such infirm people. Thank you for the time you have given to this issue. It is much appreciated.

Re: 7 Fitzjohns Avenue, Hampstead, in 1942

Sun Jan 15, 2017 1:05 am

It looks to me as if the first thing to be written in the Occupation column might have been
"Widow of Henry Carter, carman", as the deceased didn't herself have an occupation, and then the "of 7 Fitzjohns Avenue..." had been added above as an afterthought.


Re: 7 Fitzjohns Avenue, Hampstead, in 1942

Sun Jan 15, 2017 10:05 am

Angela, thank you for your response. I have read that mistakes were made on certificates, especially death certificates where the informant knew little about the person who had died but, in this instance, her son was the informant. Where the cause of death is entered as well as the passages you quote, the handwriting is lightly smaller in these two blocks which, to me, makes the entry 'of 7 Fitzjohns Ave' intentional - I cannot be sure!! Anyway, I sincerely appreciate your input to this post. Thank you very much.
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