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Renshaw Family, written by John Taylor for his children.

He was the husband of Eileen, Joyce's sister


Joyce with Daughter Janet on Her Lap. Mama, Eileen with Daughter Pat


John Taylor portrait 1969


Pat and Jackie Taylor, Eileen and John's Daughters


Renshaw Family

Grand Father

Mark Renshaw Birth date and location not known, believed to be in 1879 at Ilkeston, Derbyshire. Further, nothing is known of his parentage or line, but the name is of good direct Saxon Origin, and to those interested should not prove difficult to trace.

Employed as a Foreman Moulder at Stanton Iron Works, near Ilkeston. Was involved in a works accident in 1922, sustaining third degree burns whilst directing rescue operations. Became crippled for life when trapped under dislodged iron sewer piping.

Compensatory money granted from firm put to excellent use mainly by wife, Mary Ann. Became bedridden and died through injuries received in January 1927. Rests in Family Plot in Park Cemetery, Ilkeston, Derbyshire.


Great Grandmother

Sarah Ann Booth Of whom nothing is known save for an old Black/Sepia portrait picture, which stood at the head of the stairs at the Jolly Colliers Inn, Awsworth, Notts.

A stern, austere, uncompromising face, expressing great strength, resilience and resolve. The hair pulled back tightly to a bun at the nape of the neck. The mutton shoulder sleeves of her high necked dress, proclaiming to all the chastity, virtue and early Victorianism. Great granddaughter Patricia thought this was a picture of a man.



Mary Ann Renshaw – This lady is deserving of a page to herself and is accorded that honour.



Eileen Grace – as with Grandmother, this lady is also deserving of a page, and is also accorded that honour.



Mary Ann Renshaw Nee Booth, Birthdate and location not known, but believed to be June 1880 at Ilkeston, Derbyshire. Early working life spent in Service, spoke of employment as Bar Maid when pubs opened at 6am rarely closing until past 2am the next morning. Most requested drinks, Hot Rum by the Carters on way to early Market, Mulled Ale by the Bargees plying their trade on the canal.

A most remarkable woman, proud of her heritage and country, champion of her sex. A beauty, tall and erect even in her later years, a leader endowed with a quick wit and great strength of character. These characteristics stood her in great stead following Grandfather Renshaw’s accident. She fought for and obtained Licensee ship of the Jolly Colliers Inn, Awsworth paying the valuation from the accident money grant received from Stanton Iron Works. Hardy’s Brewery of Kimberly, Nottinghamshire, recognised her right to provide for an invalid husband and thirteen lusty children.

The family moved from 18 Park Road Ilkeston and was established at the Jolly Colliers in 1923. The Brewery allowed her the initial stock on credit at a repayment rate of a half penny per month, it is understood that payments were still being made in 1959. The Inn soon earned a name for service (mainly after time, the local police deciding to join the trend rather than oppose it recognising the many special celebrations as yet one more 21st Birthday Party) comfort, joviality and excellent beer. The Heyday of the Inn occurred in the mid-thirties when frequently visited by the Notts. County Cricket Team, it also earned the name ‘The Glue Pot’ for once there one found it hard to leave. Within the Inn’s Walls she reared 11 of the 13 children. The second eldest son – Earnest who was drowned in the nearby canal was noted for his great strength and compassion, also the youngest of the family, a girl, June who died aged 6 months rest in the Family Plot at Ilkeston. All her sons, 7 in number, were or rather are miners, her 5 remaining daughter were employed at the Inn in turn as Barmaids.

Early in her Licenseeship of the Inn, she conceived the idea of promoting and staging a local Fruit, Vegetable and Flower Show which once initiated received great acclaim and tremendous support. This was the localites token of appreciation for her aid, assistance and support during the General Strike of 1926 when no miner nor his family failed to be appeased at her famed Soup Kitchen. An invalid husband, soon to die, two of her children already laid to rest, this woman, this champion of her sex, still thought of others in those troubled times – But always with an eye to the future, for she was a business woman at heart. The annual show gained respect and increasing support, donations from the accrued sums (exhibitors fees, entrance payments, sale of produce etc.) were made to Nottingham General Hospital, certain monies to be spent in the provision of new beds, each of which bears a plaque ‘Donated by Mary Ann Renshaw’. The War, in which she helped to fleece American Servicemen, being wise to stock up prior to commencement of hostilities, curtailed and heralded the decline of the Annual Show, and though still being held in 1954 lacked the support it richly deserved and denied to the conceiver the great desire of having a ward of the Notts. General Hospital named after her. The Welfare State Act of 1946 was really the death knell and though the annual show effort was switched in support of local old age pensioners by 1957 it failed through lack of interest. The license of the Inn was revoked in 1957 in favour of a new built establishment at Beeston Notts., for few Inns hold a full catering licence such as the Jolly Colliers held, and the Brewery in its wisdom could see the effect of an aged 77 year old Landlady with but one somewhat idle son, had upon customers.

She died at the Jolly Colliers, now termed 16 the Meadows, Awsworth, on 7th January 1959 in her 80th year. The Inn died with her, for after her coffin left this house it was never lived in again and is today but a ruin. She rests in the Family Plot at Park Cemetery, Ilkeston Derbys with Grandfather Renshaw and the two named children, Ernest and the baby June.

Eileen Grace. Born 16th November 1917, at 18 Park Road, Ilkeston, Derbyshire. Moved with family to Jolly Colliers Inn, Awsworth, Nottinghamshire in 1923.

Educated at Awsworth Council School, leaving on attaining 14th birthday Xmas 1931 to take employment in Nottingham as a Typewriter Setter. The close confinement of the work room, together with side effects produced during soldering letters and numerals to keys, prior to the makeup of the typewriter (Imperial) product, affected her health. Thus at 17 years of age, commenced full time duties at home in the Inn, dependent upon and at the beck and call of her mother, the Landlady, her early adult life ruled by the demands of the Inn and its licensee.

Little time had she for the pleasures of the young, in fact even if she had been able to find time, indulgence was denied her owing to the lack of money, for she worked for her keep and clothing. Change was inevitable, it happened during Easter Week 1937 when a quiet stranger admonished her action of stirring the dying coals of the Tap Room fire with the toe of her shoe. She corresponded with the quiet stranger, a soldier, the father to be, much to the dismay of the family as a whole, for regular soldiers of those days were shunned by the general public and the families reaction was understandable.

The path of true love rarely runs smoothly, the courtship, bedevilled by periods of long absence and short leaves conditioned to the soldier, was further strained by the incessant demands of the all powerful pub. An hour snatched in the quiet of the afternoon, a half hour after closing time when the soldier had helped to collect the used glasses; washed them, prepared the public rooms for their early morning clean through and made proper representation to Madam Landlady. The magnitude of these impositions may be judged from the fact that soldiers of these days enjoyed but three leaves annually, Easter 4 days, August 4 days, Xmas 14 days with travelling times included which cut a 4 day leave to little more than 2 days at home.

The soldier asked the Land Lady for the hand of her daughter in marriage, Easter 1939 and the date of 23 September 1939 was agreed upon. The war clouds gathered, the Land Lady stocked her cellars on the advice and prompting of the soldier. With preparations in hand for a Sep 23rd wedding, the story broke on Sept 3rd 1939. The Land Lady moved quickly, a special license signed by the Arch Bishops of Canterbury and Nottingham secured for the soldier a 48 hour leave of absence for after duty Friday 15th to 6pm Sunday 17 Sept 1939. The soldier arrived at Nottingham Victoria Station at 2:30am Sat 16th Sept and after phoning his bride to be set out to walk the 7 miles to Kimberley to the home of his brother. L/Sgt John V Taylor Re married Eileen Grace Renshaw at 2:30pm 16 September 1939 at the Parrish Church Awsworth, the very first military wedding, altar draped with the Union Jack, of the district. The festivities were naturally held in the pub, Bill Marshall, husband of Mary, Eileens sister, saved the day by promising to get the soldier to Grantham Station to catch the 6am London Train, Sun 17th Sept., otherwise the soldier would have had to leave his bride at 11pm on his wedding night in order to report for duty prior to the expiration of the pass. Thus he parted at 6am Sun 17th Sept. 1939 at Grantham Station not to see each other again until mid-March 1940, the soldier serving with the BEF in France.

Independence, with the receipt of Marriage Allowance and Allotments, smiled at last upon Eileen and the grip of the Landlady and Pub was relaxed. After Dunkirk and the evacuation of the British Expeditionary Force in June 1940, Eileen joined John in Elgin, Morayshire, Scotland, and though, but established in rooms, the good years began.

Eileen, beautiful Eileen, fair hair shinning, blue eyes glinting with deep set humour, ready to flash in anger when provoked. But 5ft 3 ins in height, but all woman, an excellent wife and perfect mother.

Daughter – Patricia Ann born 23rd Sep 1941 at St Lukes, Bradford
Daughter – Jacqueline Ann born 11th November 1946 at St Lukes, Bradford.
Jacqueline has the distinction of being the eleventh grandchild by the eleventh child.

At times, owing to service commitments and when possible during leaves of absence, the Taylor family returned for short stays to the Jolly Colliers Inn but now with independence and soon the general trend of events was for grandmother, the Landlady, and others of the large family, to visit the Taylors.

Eileen thoroughly enjoyed the trip to Germany, taken she would admit with some intrepidation, and was ever ready to expound upon the great adventure and the kindness and consideration she and the daughters received throughout the military sponsored trip.

She bravely accepted Jacqueline’s departure to boarding school, looking forward to her return, and was most annoyed to note how well she looked and the gaiety expressed at each departure. She finally admitted that Jackie was growing up. She was astounded when Patricia decided to visit Monchengladbach to see what it was like in the Women’s Royal Army Corp., completely flabbergasted when Patricia wrote to say she was at Guilford and had enlisted, undergoing recruit training. Even this was finally excepted when Patricia arrived at Hamelin Station, most smart in the uniform and a L/Cpr  (Lance Corporal) to boot, looking the very picture of health and entirely feminine.

She made many friends among the German nationals, it surprised her to find them ‘just like us’, and though one would not have called her a linguist by any means, the vendors in Hamelin Market greatly respected ‘Frau Englander’.

The news of Eileen's mother’s death, received in the small hours of the bleak, icy, snow laden morning of the actual burial day, greatly disturbed her. Later she began to appreciate the many difficulties attendant upon her relations in England, and finally forgave all when armed with the knowledge that the old lady had commenced her house hold duties, sat in the usual chair to rest, and had just died. No illness, nothing, the valiant staunch heart just stopped. Returning to England, the drive to Ostend and the trip across the Channel greatly pleased her, and soon she had 14, Old Park Close, Old Park Barracks, Dover, Kent, in Apple Pie order, and turned her attention, as was ever her wont, to the garden. By the time the expected shoals of visitors began to arrive, all was to order. Beautiful roses bloomed, the house giving a triumphant welcome.

Attendance at her sister Elizabeth’s (Lyd) funeral in June 1960 definitely set her against cremation, attempts to pacify and reason were scorned.

From two newly married family guests, she received, on her twenty second anniversary, twenty two beautiful yellow Tea Roses. New family guests were in the house, the terrible morning she died so suddenly, 22 September 1961.

The Anniversary Tea Roses were still fresh, four were laid at her breast.

Eileen rests, adjoining the Renshaw family plot, grave number 6304, Park Cemetery, Ilkeston, Derbyshire.
Military Honours were accorded at the funeral.


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