Thomas Collins (1818-1900)

by David Willavoys, 1998 and 1999

“A Workman that needeth not to be ashamed”

Thomas Collins, Esq., J.P.
painted by Josiah Rushton
Thomas Collins, Esq., J.P.
painted by Josiah RushtonClick Image
 to Expand

In a neglected grave in Tewkesbury Cemetery, deprived by the overhanging branches of a tree of a view of the Abbey he loved, lies one of the most important men of Victorian Tewkesbury - Thomas Collins.

Collins was born to humble parents, John and Elizabeth Collins, who were members of the Wesleyan Methodist Chapel, despite which Thomas was baptised in the Abbey on 14th. October 18181, and so began a lifelong association with the Abbey. He attended the British School in Barton Road (now Elizabeth Wyatt House), where he said that he learnt to write in sand2 in the absence of pen and paper. In 1823 he witnessed the laying of the foundation stones of the Mythe Bridge, having been carried there from town on his father's shoulders3. Little could he have thought that many years later he would lead the campaign to free the bridge from toll charges.

Sundays for the young Thomas were dominated by attendance at the Wesleyan Sunday School, He must have proved an able pupil, since in 1816 he was appointed a Sunday School teacher. At the age of 21, Thomas married Honor Luker in the Abbey, for the Wesleyan Chapel was not then licensed for the solemnisation of marriages. The newly-weds set up home in a cottage in Back of Avon. Thomas was obviously a good Sunday School teacher, for in 1849 he was appointed Superintendent, a post he was to hold for over thirty years. To undertake this duty his love of children must have been very strong, and it must have been a personal tragedy for Thomas and Honor when both their children died young; Elizabeth in December 1847, aged only 19 months, and Catherine in December 1864 in her eleventh year. By 1851 Thomas and Honor had moved into the house in Church Street, with his parents, which was to be their home for the rest of their lives.

Thomas's marriage to Honor lasted until her death in 1889, when, to quote his words, "a cloud of gloom passed over my house at that time"5.

Collins' father was a stocking maker, but he must have realised that the trade had little future in Tewkesbury, since he arranged for Thomas to be apprenticed to a stonemason. Although the documents of the apprenticeship have not survived, it is probable that he was trained by a member of the Collins family, who had been bricklayers and masons in the town for many years. His apprenticeship was completed by 1841, for the census returns for that year describe him as a journeyman stonemason, i.e., in the period of several years before he was able to practise as a master mason. In 1842 he went into business on his own account and employed one other man. Little is known about his early work, but by 1851 the census returns describe him as a stonemason employing four men. He was clearly a good craftsman, gradually establishing his reputation. His work came to the attention of the eminent Victorian architect, Sir Matthew Digby Wyatt, who was secretary to the Royal Commission for the Great Exhibition of 1851. Two years after the exhibition, when the Crystal Palace was moved from Hyde Park to Sydenham Hill, Wyatt commissioned Collins to provide copies of Abbot Wakeman's tomb and twenty bosses from Tewkesbury Abbey6, which were to be incorporated in the permanent exhibition. At about the time that Collins was undertaking this work, Wyatt was collaborating with George Gilbert Scott on the design of the Foreign Office in whitehall. Scott was to feature greatly in Collins' later career.

Cross House circa 1890
restored by Thomas Collins
Cross House circa 1890
restored by Thomas CollinsClick Image
 to Expand

The Crimean War ended in 1856 to great rejoicing throughout the nation. In common with many other towns, Tewkesbury obtained one of the guns captured at Sevastopol, but having got the gun, controversy raged over where the gun should be displayed in the town. At first it was suggested that it should be located in the arch between the chapels in the newly-opened cemetery in Gloucester Road, but permission was refused by the Burial Board. The Town Council asked Collins to design a plinth for the gun to be located at the Cross7. Unfortunately his design did not find favour, and the Town Council eventually accepted an offer by Henry Barnes, the contractor for the construction of the Upper Lode Lock, to provide a pedestal at no expense to the town8. This was one of the few rebuffs that Collins received in his business life. The gun was subsequently moved at least twice, before being scrapped during the Second World War. 

Collins soon bounced back from this setback, when in 1857 the Town Council decided to enclose the open space in front of the Town Hall to form a Corn Exchange. Collins was employed to produce the stone building which we see today, one of only two stone frontages in Tewkesbury High Street. By this time the volume of work undertaken was such that Collins felt the need of partners, and so he joined with William Cullis, a bricklayer who originated from Pershore. Cullis had been in business on his own account in Tewkesbury for some years, and, like Collins, he was a member of the Wesleyan Chapel and a Sunday School teacher. For a short time a third partner was brought into the company, W.H.James of Cirencester. The partnership traded under the name of Collins, Cullis and James. The firm renovated the Saxon church at Deerhurst in 18629, and in the same year built a new chapel at Overbury. Commenting on the completion of the latter contract, the Tewkesbury Register said, "The present place is quite an ornament to the village and reflects great credit upon the taste and energy of Messrs. Collins, Cullis & James of Tewkesbury, who we feel assured will be losers by the undertaking."10 The business was expanding rapidly, so that by 1861 Collins described himself in the census as a "Builder, employing 64 men and 6 boys" They were good employers; in 1864 all three partners were invited to dine at the Fleece Inn by their workmen, and were presented with specially made clocks11. James left the partnership in April 186512 after the completion of the major contract for the building of the Borough Flour Mills for the Healing family. 

Collins' long association with the restoration and improvement of Tewkesbury Abbey began in 1860 when he was employed to install a new window in the east end. The work was under the direction of George Gilbert Scott. On the completion of this work, the Tewkesbury Register observed that "the performance of the works was placed in the hands of Mr. Thomas Collins of this town, and we need hardly say that it has been executed most satisfactorily, as is every undertaking he has"13. At about the same time, Collins was starting on one of his other contributions to the street scene of Tewkesbury, the restoration of the medieval buildings. In an attempt to make old properties look more modem, many of the timber and brick frontages had been covered with plaster or rough cast facades. Collins recognised the craftsmanship which had gone into the original structures, and he decided to return them to their former glory whenever an opportunity arose. His first restoration was of Warwick House in Church Street. His workmanship was unfortunately destroyed by fire during the 1980's, but, thanks to the conservation policy of Tewkesbury Borough Council, has once again been restored. He next set about revealing the wonderful Elizabethan framing of his own home, Cross House on the comer of Church Street and Tolsey Lane. Other properties restored by Collins during a long career included the Bell Hotel, the Wheatsheaf, Dobells (the Victoria Wine shop) and probably the oldest house in the town, the Berkeley Arms. It is fair to say that most of the credit for the survival and good condition of so many black and white buildings in the town is due to Thomas Collins. 

Gilbert Scoots Design for
the Choir Restoration
Gilbert Scoots Design for
the Choir RestorationClick Image
 to Expand

Restoration of the Abbey had been talked of for many years. During earlier attempts at restoration much of the stonework had been painted, and the nave was a mass of irregular pews and galleries. The walls were 'streaming with moisture' and there was a 'continuous damp and musty atmosphere which pervaded the whole building'. In 1864 a public meeting was held at which George Gilbert Scott gave his vision of what should be done to restore the Abbey14. This meeting led to the formation of a committee to raise funds for the restoration. After receiving Scott's estimate of the cost of the necessary work the Committee resolved not to start work until they had the necessary funds in hand to complete Scott's plans. The not inconsiderable sum of was needed. The first £4,000 was soon raised, but it was not until 1870-71 that the real impetus for restoration was started by an act of generosity on the part of Collins. Bearing in mind that he was a Wesleyan, and in fact Senior Steward of the Tewkesbury Circuit of the Wesleyans, his offer to undertake some restoration in the choir at his own expense was all the more remarkable. His part in the restoration of 1875-79 is well described in Anthea Jones' book Tewkesbury15 The value of the work carried out by Collins at his own expense will never be known, but it was considerable over a period of thirty years. In 1877 at a meeting of the National Restoration Committee held at Lambeth Palace the Bishop of Gloucester said, "Our contractor, Mr. Thomas Collins, will, we fear, be a great loser by the work he has performed in and for the sake of the old Abbey, which has no part in the contract and in which his liberality has had no bounds" 16 Speaking at the dinner held in 1879 to celebrate the re-opening of the Abbey after the restoration, the Treasurer of the Restoration Committee, Charles W. Moore, said that he had asked Collins time after time, "What claims have you on the Committee?" , only to receive the reply, "I have no claim on the Committee, I am doing this myself" 17. Whilst he did not seek recognition for his work, the Freemasons made Collins 'Provincial Grand Superintendent of Works' to mark his part in the restoration. 

Meanwhile, Collins' building business was gaining a considerable local and national reputation. In 1870 he built the Roman Catholic Church at the Mythe18 (now converted into September Cottages), and the Primitive Methodist Chapel in Barton Street19 (now a store for the Hospital). He was also carrying out extensive restoration work at Worcester Cathedral under the direction of George Gilbert Scott20. The 1871 Census reported that Collins was a "Builder employing 311 hands". The Rural Hospital in Oldbury Road (now Graham Court) was built by him in 1871, this was a cause he supported for the rest of his life. 

The Wesleyans were using the chapel which they had opened in 1814 in Tolsey Lane21 (now the Tewkesbury Antiques Centre), but by the 1870's were looking for a better site on which to build new and more convenient premises. In 1872 Collins and Cullis took the opportunity to buy the Borough Market House which was located at the Cross22. Initially the partnership used the building as a timber store, but Collins' real intention was to use the site for a new Wesleyan Chapel. In his capacity as Circuit Steward, he became Chairman of a fund-raising committee for this purpose. In 1874 the partners sold the Market House to the Wesleyan Trustees, and in 1877-78 were the contractors for the clearance of the site and the erection of the Methodist Church which we see today on a prime site in the centre of the town. Three years later Collins built the schoolroom at the back of the church and repaired the adjacent house in Church Street, for use as the Wesleyan Manse23. The chapel contains a stained glass window given by Collins, which is dedicated to his grandfather, Samuel Collins, and family. Collins' generosity to the Wesleyan cause was as liberal as it was to the Abbey. The account books of the chapel record many donations from him to make up deficits in the quarterly accounts24. If money was needed for any purpose, Collins could be relied upon to be the first contributor. 

In 1877 Collins' partner, William Cullis, decided that he wanted to branch out on his own and bought a building business based in Hereford. Once again Collins was directing the Company on his own. The break in the partnership had little or no effect in the success of the business, since Collins' reputation for quality work was well known. Restoration or new building work was undertaken in places as far away from Tewkesbury as London, Manchester and Brecon. Whilst building and restoring churches, of all denominations, was the backbone of the business, Collins also built hospitals, schools and large country houses. The expansion of the business was such that in 1881 the census returns report that Collins was a "Builder employing 400 men". He was the major employer of labour in Tewkesbury, and, at a time when poverty was common, many families in the town were justifiably proud of, and grateful to, Collins for the prosperity he brought. He was not a man to exploit his workmen, but was concerned for their welfare. As early as 1865, the Collins and Cullis Workman's Mutual Benefit Society was formed. This Society provided financial help to workmen who fell sick, and death benefits for the men and their families. The social side of life was also catered for; football and cricket clubs were formed and played on land in Oldbury owned by Collins. Collins encouraged thrift, and he was one of the first directors of the Tewkesbury and District Permanent Benefit Building Society, which was founded in 1882. 

One of Collins' favourite causes was the British School where he had received his education. By 1881 the school had outgrown its premises, and the trustees were fortunate in securing a plot of land on the opposite side of Barton Road. Needless to say, it was to Collins that they turned to erect a new classroom (now the Tewkesbury Youth Centre)26

At the time of the dissolution of the monasteries by Henry VIII, the Abbey House, Gatehouse and land surrounding the Abbey were separated from Church ownership: Since 1820, the Abbey Estate had been in the ownership of the Martin family (of Martin's Bank), but on the death of Richard Biddulph Martin, the estate was offered for sale by auction in July 1883. The Restoration Committee saw this as an opportunity to reunite the estate with the Abbey, and so further enhance the standing of the Abbey. The Committee had no money to bid at the auction and launched a national appeal, backed by the Society of Antiquaries, Because this appeal would take time to raise money, Collins joined forces with the Vicar of Tewkesbury, Canon Robeson, in bidding for the estate at the sale which took place at the Swan Hotel. They were successful in outbidding other interested parties, but had to pay £10,500. Collins and Robeson held the property until funds could be found27. This act on their part enabled the Abbey House to become the home of the Vicar, as it is to this day. Not all the land in the estate was passed to the Abbey; some, notably the Vineyards, was retained by Canon Robeson. 

Collins was now in his mid-sixties, a time of life when most men look forward to scaling down their activities and enjoying an easier life. But Collins was not an ordinary man; he was a man of remarkable energy and public spirit. In 1885 he embarked upon a new phase in his life which was to bring him local honours. The story of this new turn in his life will be told in the next article. 

Part 2 "A Workman that needeth not to be ashamed"

A new photo of the memorial in the Abbey<br>is required! Please send in
A new photo of the memorial in the Abbey
is required! Please send in

In the first part of this article, published in Bulletin No. 7, the first 65 years of the life of Thomas Collins were described. from humble origins, he became a major employer in Tewkesbury, gave freely of his labour and money to restore Tewkesbury Abbey and many other buildings in the town and further afield.

It was usual in the nineteenth century for local businessmen and gentry to involve themselves in public affairs, and Tewkesbury was no exception. Thomas Collins seems to have concentrated his energies into his business, but there is evidence of his having taken an interest in local politics in 1880, when he was a successful petitioner against the election of Captain William Edward Price as Member of Parliament.[28] On behalf of the Conservatives in the town Collins complained to the High Court that Captain Price and his agents were guilty of bribery and other electoral offences when he was elected. The Court upheld Collins' complaint and Captain Price was removed from his Parliamentary seat.

Five years late, a vacancy arose on the Town Council following the death of Councillor Francis Thomas. Collins was named as the Conservative candidate, and his nomination was greeted with delight by an editorial in the Tewkesbury Register[29] The editor eulogised about Collins' contribution to the town's economy and urged readers to "drive away from your door as unworthy to cross your thresholds, every individual who dares attempt to influence you against the consummation of Mr Collins' wish to take his place in the Town Council of his native town". Collins was duly elected with a majority of 49 amongst the 773 votes cast[30] (a turnout of 90.45%). Prophetically, in welcoming his election the Register said, "it will prove the stepping stone to further honours, of which he will be justly proud, and no man in the Borough of Tewkesbury is more thoroughly deserving or better entitled to share in". In the following year, Collins retained his seat, in fact being top of the poll, even though he refrained from canvassing the electorate, and abstained from recording his own vote. Such was his popularity in the eyes of the people of Tewkesbury.[31]

Queen Victoria celebrated the Golden Jubilee of her reign in 1887. Thomas Collins played a full part in the Committee which was formed to plan the celebrations in Tewkesbury.[32] It was decided by the Committee that there should be a permanent memorial to the Jubilee in the form of a new clock in the Abbey tower. Sufficient funds were raised in the town for this objective, and Collins' skills were employed in the design and building of a 31 feet square chamber in the Abbey tower to house the clock and bell ringing room. In addition, his workmen erected the cooking apparatus at the Cross for an Ox Roast on 21st. June "without a farthing's charge". Bread, meat and drink were distributed to over 200 people. Collins' home, Cross House, was decorated with transparencies of the Queen and the Royal Arms and stained glass panels. As Worshipful Master of the Ancient Guild of Cordwainers, Collins was host to 40 members and friends at a dinner at the Swan Hotel.

Collins threw himself into the work of the Town Council and the Board of Health, using his professional skill in improving conditions in the town. He was asked to be Mayor in 1887, but did not feel able to accept. He was again invited to be Mayor the following year, but refused because "a cloud of gloom passed over my house at that time". (His wife, Honor, had suffered strokes and had gone blind.) In 1890 he accepted the offer to be Mayor and was duly invested with the chain of office (which had been presented to the Town Council by the same Captain Price who had been unseated from Parliament by Collins' action in 1880!) In his acceptance speech Collins expressed his reservations about taking on the office, but said that "God helping him, it would be his earnest endeavour to act justly everything in his power to further the interests generally of his native town".[33] He was true to his word, since in his year of office there were a number of achievements in the town. First, the Rural Hospital Committee launched an appeal for money to build a children's ward. Collins had always supported the work of the Hospital and had built the original premises in 1871. The appeal was successful and Collins designed and built an extension which almost doubled the accommodation in the hospital. Secondly, Collins saw that the freeing of the tolls on the Mythe Bridge would be beneficial to the town.[34] He led the appeal for funds to buy out the shareholders, which, with the help of grants from the recently established County Councils of Gloucestershire and Worcestershire, resulted in the freeing of the bridge in December 1891. Thirdly, he supported the building of an extension to the British School in Barton Street.[35] His year in office also saw improvements in the street lighting, paving and refurbishment of the Town Hall.

Collins was nominated for a second term as Mayor, but lost the election by 8 votes to 7. He was angry at this rebuff, since he had, he believed, been promised a second term by his political opponents. He seems to have been a victim of the robust political divisions in the Town Council, the Liberals apparently going back on their promise to support him.[36]

In November of the following year, Collins again retained his seat on the Town Council, filling his by now customary place at the top of the poll. It was perhaps inevitable after his rejection in the mayoral election in 1891 that, with the political majority once again in Conservative hands, that he was successfully placed in the Mayoral chair for a second time.

In fact, he went on to be Mayor for four successive terms. It would be tedious to recite the many improvement brought about in the town during this period. Suffice it to say that Collins led the Council on the path of progress, which was much appreciated by rich and poor alike. The affection in which he was held manifested itself in two particular honours paid to him. In 1894, a group of his friends and admirers subscribed to a fund to commission a portrait of Collins. The artist employed was Mr. T. Rushton, who had a studio in Montpellier Street in Cheltenham.[37] The fee paid for the portrait was €65, while the frame cost an additional €12. The portrait was presented to Collins on 31st' October 1894 at a ceremony in the Town Hall by W.G.Healing, who paid tribute to Collins' many achievements in the town. In an emotional response, Collins referred to his work on the Abbey restoration as a "labour of love; none had given him greater pleasure than that work". It gave him satisfaction that "architects of every degree had expressed approval of the way in which the restoration hacl been done, and also on the fact that it had not been overdone". Collins concluded his response by asking the Corporation to accept the portrait.[37] To this day the portrait, which is life-sized, with Collins wearing the Mayoral chain of office, hangs in the Council Chamber in the Town Hall.

No Caption
Click Image to Expand

In November 1896 Collins was once again asked asked to be Mayor, but, bearing in mind that he was now 78 years of age and in failing health, he declined and was succeeded by Thomas Weaver Moore. The Council were not prepared to let Collins go without giving him what was then a unique honour in the town. In 1835 the town had been incorporated under the Municipal Corporations Act, and the ancient office of Freeman had been abolished. Local Authorities were given the right to appoint Honorary Freemen in an 1885 Act of Parliament. Tewkesbury had not yet taken advantage of the provision, but the first act of the new Mayor was to propose that Collins be admitted as a Freeman of the Borough. A special meeting of the Town Council was held on 24th. November 1896, when Collins was presented with an illuminated address contained in a casket.[38] Collins accepted this honour with the expressions of humility which characterised so many of his public utterances. He remained a member of the Town Council for the rest of his life.

Throughout his period in the public life of the town he continued to play a full part in the flourishing business which he had founded. He had no direct family to bring into the business, but he was greatly assisted by his nephew, Francis William Godfrey, who joined the film in the 1870's. It was not until 1894 that Godfrey was taken into partnership, creating the building firm of Collins and Godfrey, which continued trading until the 1970's in Tewkesbury and Cheltenham. During the period from 1895, Collins was undertaking work all over the country, building churches, banks, schools and railway stations as well as houses.[39] Locally, he built the Mythe Water Tower, an extension to the Trinity National School, houses in Cotteswold Road and Rope Walk, amongst many other projects. He continued to restore the ancient houses of the town. In 1893-96 Collins and Godfrey were employed to build the new Chapel at Cheltenham College. As a tribute to his work, a carving of Collins' head was incorporated on a label stop on the exterior of one of the north windows of the Chapel. Other heads similarly depicted included Queen Victoria, the Archbishop of Canterbury, Gladstone, Disraeli, Field Marshals Lords Robert and Wolseley[40], illustrious company for a man of such humble origins!

Although the main restoration of Tewkesbury Abbey had been completed in 1879, Collins continued to be generous in the cause of beautifying the building. He was employed to erect the oak screen between the nave and the choir.[41] At his own expense, he reopened and restored the ancient doorway into the Abbey south side from the cloister walk. In 1899 he paid for the rebuilding of one of the cloister arches.[42]

It must not be forgotten that Collins was a prominent member of the Tewkesbury Wesleyan Methodist Church, to which he was also generous. In 1886 he built a new chapel at Coombe Hill and met ten percent of the cost from his own pocket.[43] To commemorate the memory of his wife, Honor, who had died in 1889, Collins bought a piece of land in Swilgate Road from the Wesleyan Chapel Trustees and built two cottages as almshouses for poor members of the Chapel. He endowed them with land he owned at Forthampton and Eldersfield.[44] Regrettably, the Almshouses were sold in the 1960's, when they had fallen into disrepair, but they have been well renovated and still display a tablet bearing the initials H C and the date of Honor Collins' death. The Honor Collins Trust still exists (the writer being one of the trustees) and its income is used to assist members of the Methodist chapels in the former Tewkesbury circuit.

In 1895 there was discussion in the Town Council about the provision of an Isolation Hospital. Five years earlier Collins had bought land at Railsmeadow, and he offered it as a site for the hospital. On financial grounds the proposal to build was rejected, at which point Collins offered to transfer the land to the town free of charge for any purpose they chose.[45] The Town Council accepted the offer and initially used the land as a children's play area. Over the past hundred years the land has been used for a number of purposes, but latterly as a public car park. When Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee was celebrated in 1897, Collins recalled at a public meeting held to consider a permanent memorial his early years, when he walked freely in Mitton Leys, the Hollams and other places which were no longer open. He suggested the provision of a pleasure garden on land which had been donated to the Council by Mrs. Thomas (widow of Alderman Frederick Thomas). The idea was adopted and the Victoria Pleasure Gardens were opened by the Mayor, T.W.Moore, in June 1897.[46] Collins' part in the project was duly lauded, and he in turn praised the workmen who had laid out the ground. He said that he had visited the site while work was still in progress and had seen the workmen, but

"I did not see their shabby dress, 
I saw their manliness,
I saw their picks, I saw their spades, 
I saw the hands that God had made, 
And blessed our Maker for such men
That made this old world young again. "

Thomas Collins' life came to an end on 3rd. January 1900, and he was deeply mourned in the town. As soon as the news of his death broke, flags were hoisted at half-mast on the Abbey and the Town Hall. The largest Abbey bell was muffled and tolled for one hour.[48] In his will Collins expressed the wish that his funeral "be as plain as possible", but this was not to be. Over 1500 people were present in the Abbey, including the Town Council, complete with the civic maces, Freemasons, Magistrates and 200 employees of Collins & Godfrey. A procession a quarter of a mile long followed the coffin from the Abbey to the cemetery, where he was laid to rest with his wife Honor. Tributes were paid to him in the Abbey and the Wesleyan Methodist Chapel on the following Sunday.[49] Both the Tewkesbury Register and the Tewkesbury Weekly Record published fulsome obituaries, recording his great contribution to the life of the town.

Collins' will reveals that he left an estate valued at €18,348. After bequests of €50 each to the Rural Hospital, Dispensary and Nursing Institution, his estate was distributed to relatives and friends. He was generous to his housekeeper and her family and to the foremen of his business. The greatest beneficiary was his nephew, F.W.Godfrey, who inherited Cross House and the residue of the estate. Surprisingly, there were no bequests to the Abbey or the Wesleyan Methodist Church; perhaps his generosity in life was considered enough.

It was not until 1906 that the achievements of Thomas Collins were marked permanently in the Abbey on which he had bestowed so much love and labour. A stained glass window and memorial tablet were installed in the Norman Lady Chapel.[50] The tablet, which was designed by J.Oldrid Scott, son of Sir Gilbert Scott, who restored the Abbey with Collins, has a medallion portrait of him and a brief resumé of his achievements. Tewkesbury as we know it today, owes a great deal to Thomas Collins, and the inscription at the foot of his memorial tablet very well describes him as "Workman that needeth not to be ashamed".


  1. GRO: P329 IN 1/19 
  2. Tewkesbury Register: 14.3.1891 
  3. Tewkesbury Register: 19.12.1891 
  4. GRO: 7/14 
  5. Tewkesbury Register: 14.11.1891 
  6. GRO.- P329M/ 25 
  7. Tewkesbury Register: 7.8.1858 
  8. Tewkesbury Register: 11.12.1858 
  9. Tewkesbury Register; 2.8.1862
  10. Tewkesbury Register: 13.9.1862 
  11. Tewkesbury Register: 31.12.1864 
  12. Tewkesbury Register: 22.4.1865 
  13. Tewkesbury Register: 26.5.1860 
  14. Tewkesbury Register: 6.8.1864 
  15. 'Tewkesbury' : Anthea Jones (Phillimore) 
  16. GRO: P329 CW 4/2 
  17. Tewkesbury Register: 4.10.1879 
  18. GRO: D843 1/2 
  19. GRO: D843 4/1 
  20. GRO: 843 1/2 
  21. GRO: D2599 7/5 
  22. Tide deeds of Tewkesbury Methodist Church 
  23. GRO: D2599 7/6 & 7/10 
  24. GRO: D2599 1/13 
  25. GRO: D843 1/1 To 1/6 
  26. GRO: D843 1/4 
  27. GRO: P329 CW4/4 
  28. Tewkesbury Register 1.5.1880
  29. Tewkesbury Register 14.11.1885 
  30. Tewkesbury Register 21.11.1885 
  31. 4 Tewkesbury Register 6.1.1886 
  32. Tewkesbury Register 25.6.1887 
  33. Tewkesbury Register 15.11.1890 
  34. Tewkesbury Weekly Record 2.5.1891
  35. Tewkesbury Weekly Record 14.3.1891
  36. Tewkesbury Register 14.11.1891
  37. Gloucestershire Records Office TBR B2/50
  38. Tewkesbury Register 3.11.1894 
  39. Tewkesbury Register 14.11.1896 
  40. Gloucestershire Records Office D843 7/4 & 1/5 
  41. Tewkesbury Register 17.10.1896 
  42. Tewkesbury Register 27.9.1890 
  43. Tewkesbury Register 5.3.1898 
  44. Gloucestershire Records Office D2599 6/5
  45. Minute Book of the Honor Collins Trust
  46. Tewkesbury Register 22.6.78985
  47. Tewkesbury Register 26.6.1897
  48. Tewkesbury Register 6.1. J 900
  49. Tewkesbury Register 13.1.1900
  50. Tewkesbury Register 12.5.1906 
Print Version


Sunday 21-May-2023   by: Will Dallimore
Tewkesbury YMCA Movie Makers are shortly to make a film on the history of St. James' Church, Badsey, Worcestershire. Records show that in 1885 major building work was carried out to enlarge the church. Documents say that the builder was a Thomas Collins of Tewkesbury. Is this the same Thomas Collins as is in your article? (Tewkesbury People and Connections - Thomas Collins)
THS writes back:
Very probably. Haven't heard of another in the same trade.

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