William Swayne was working for Thomas Greathurst in Effingham
in 1766. However he moved into Hall Place Farm in about May
that year. He probably continued to work part time for Thomas
Greathurst and certainly would have seen him a lot since he
married his daughter, Anne, in August 1769.
and Anne had six children, but sadly only two, William and
Thomas, survived to adulthood. Anne herself died, aged 34,
in 1783 shortly after giving birth to twins, both of whom
died in infancy. The first Swayne to be interred in Merrow
churchyard was Sarah, one of the twins, who died in June 1782
aged just seven days.
farm to Hall Place in Merrow was Coxhall Farm. This was owned
and farmed by William Luck. William Luck and William Swayne
both took a very active role in the life of the village. They
were both active members of the Church, being churchwardens,
overseers of the poor. William Swayne was a churchwarden from
1773 until his death in 1803. A Summons dated 1798 for William
Swayne, as churchwarden, to appear before the Archdeacon of
Surrey, is shown opposite.
was next door to the church, in fact where the church hall
now stands. One rather embarrasing episode for William whilst
he was Churchwarden In 1802 there was a dispute between the
Parish and William Swayne about the repair of the fences between
the Churchyard and the Farm. This dispute calumniated in the
Parish impounding all William Swayne’s pigs, which had
got out and were running around the churchyard. Although it
would appear that William Swayne was responsible for all repairs
to the property, the Hospital told him that it was the Parish’s
responsibility and backed him up by paying for the resulting
Court case. They lost the case and paid William Smallpiece,
the solicitor, for all the expenses incurred.
Luck and William Swayne were also, jointly, the Land Tax Assessors
for Merrow almost continuously from 1781 until ……
with as short break in 1782 and 1783 for William Swayne when
his wife was ill and dying.
married Rachel Humpheys in 1787, four years after Anne’s
death. He was widowed a second time when she died in 1795.
died in 1803 and the next 21 year lease was signed jointly
in 1805 by his sons William and Thomas. Sadly William died,
aged 30, in 1806, so the farm was managed solely by Thomas
for the next 53 years.
time William Luck had died and Coxhall was being managed by
his son Edmond. On 14th May 1806 Thomas Swayne and Edmund
Luck both appeared at St James’ parish, Westminster
to make an oath of their intentions to marry Frances Elliott
and er eldest sister, Anne. These Marriage Licence Allegations
took the place of reading banns in church and, although the
prospective brides would have had to have resided in the parish
of St. James for at least four weeks, their father was a farmer
from Loxwood in the parish of Wisborough Green in Sussex.
It is not known how they met Thomas and Edmund.
and Frances had eleven children, all of whom, surprisingly
in those days, survived to adulthood. The Luck’s were
not quite so lucky. Their first two children died in infancy.
They then had a further four children, all of whom did survive.
and Frances’ six sons, the eldest son, William, founded
a building business in Guildford, which continued to operate
until the 1980’s. Three of their other sons, Thomas,
George and James set up their own grocery business –
Thomas at Mayor House in Merrow and George and James at Farnham
and Weybridge respectively. The two remaining sons took over
the management of the farm when Thomas died.
five daughters daughters, Mary Anne married Resta Moore, a
woolstapler from Leatherhead, Frances married a grocer from
Dover, Sarah Anne married a coach builder/corn dealer (interesting
combination!) from Marylebone. Esther Swayne (aged 48) married Philip Pickett (a widower aged 63) at St. Mary's, Send on 25th December 1863.
I have not been able to find out anything
about the youngest daughter, Louisa, since her birth in 1818.
Thomas and Frances’ son or sons-in-law are mentioned
in the farm accounts in connection with their various business.
The most common one is, of course, Thomas, who owned the grocery
business in Merrow and bought much of his produce from the
farm. This business was passed on to his son, William James
Swayne on Thomas’ (the grocer) death in 1876. It remaines
in the family until about 1910, when it was sold to the Kimber
(the farmer) also sold produce to Connisbee, the butcher in
Merrow. The earliest account of this is
Swayne and his brother-in-law Edmund Luck continued the traditions
of their respective fathers by being active members of the
community and of the church. They were both churchwardens
and overseers of the poor at various times.