Bill in l to r 1950; 1953 with son and circa 1977. Far right, Rose in 1965
This account begins with Frederick Robinson, who was a master tailor living at Vine Cottage, Preston Green from the late 1870s. One of his daughters, Margaret Elizabeth Robinson, married Harry Worthington, an engine driver from Dymock, Gloucestershire at St Martin’s, Preston on Christmas Day, 1909. The couple lived at Vine Cottage, Preston Green. A little more than a year later, Rose Margaret Irene Worthington was born on 31 December 1910. By the late 1920s, Harry and Margaret Worthington were also living at Vine Cottage. In the summer of 1947 Rose Worthington married William (Bill) Vincent Stanley (born 7 March 1913) in the Hitchin registration district and by the 1950s the Stanleys (who had one son, born in 1950) were living with Rose’s parents at Vine Cottage. The 1939 Register provides s snapshot of the family at Vine Cottage, together with a note of their dates of birth:
Bill with Friedhelm and ‘Janner’
Rear of Vine Cottage
Preston shop, kept by Rose Stanley
Harry (24 May 1950) and Margaret (10 November 1959) died and were buried at St Martin’s. Meanwhile, Bill and Rose Stanley (who ran the adjacent village shop for a time) continued to live at Vine Cottage until their deaths. Bill was buried at St Martin’s on 8 May 1993 and Rose’s ashes were scattered in the graveyard after her death in early 1997. So, Vine Cottage was inhabited by three generations of one family for almost one hundred and twenty years. In 1965, Bill’s student son exchanged with a German student, Friedhelm Partenheimer. Friedhelm has now retired after teaching English and Geography at a school in Nieder-Olm. He reads and comments on every web site update. He has sent some photographs of Vine Cottage and its occupants, two of which are reproduced below.