A village with a big story
Little Holland cottages at top of Green no longer there
Claypits Pond with Horses 1905
Long Melford Coronation fancy dress competition at the British Legion in Cordell road1953
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Selected Biographies

Ward, David – Born: Brightwell, Suffolk in 1817. Parents: Thomas Ward (Wheelwright) and Lydia [née Hayward].  Family Connections: Brother-in-law of James Silver [b1814] and uncle of David Hayward Ward [b1866].  Home: living with Susan and Jane Hayward (aunts), Greenstead Green, Essex (1841), Foundry House, Hall Street, Long Melford (1851 to 1891).  Occupation: Iron Founder (1841-1891).  Married: Mary Silver in 1843.  Commercial Record: David may have learnt his trade under the tutelage of his uncle Asa Hayward who ran an iron foundry and agricultural implement manufactory in Greenstead Green. Hayward died in January 1841 aged 45, seemingly without nominating a successor; the 1841 Census showing his unmarried sisters Susan and Jane listed as iron founders in his stead.  In a matter of weeks, the business was put up for sale, and purchased by a Henry Wright of Bethnal Green in the following January.[1]  It is not known if David Ward benefited from the sale of his uncle’s business, however by 1843 he had sufficient capital to form a partnership with his brother-in-law James Silver and establish the firm of Ward & Silver as an Iron Foundry and Agricultural Implement Makers in Long Melford.  Listed as an Iron and Brass Foundry in White’s Professional and Commercial Advertising Directory of 1844 the Company would continue operating on the same site for nearly one hundred years, employing: 11 men and 11 boys in 1851, 60 men and 15 boys in 1861, 70 men and 6 boys in 1871 and 63 men and 4 boys in 1881.  Following David Ward’s death, the business was continued initially by his younger brother William, and after his demise in 1907, by his nephew David Hayward Ward.   Died: Long Melford in 1896.

Ward, David Hayward – Born: Bucklesham, Suffolk on 31.5.1866.[2] Parents: John Ward of Brightwell, Suffolk (Blacksmith) and Ann Elizabeth [née Skippen].  Family Connections: Brother of Herbert William Ward [b1869] and nephew of David Ward [b1817].  Home: Lower Street, Bucklesham (1871 to 1881), Foundry House, Hall Street, Long Melford (1891 to 1921), Holy Trinity Hospital, Long Melford (1939).  Occupation: Carpenter (1891), Iron Foundry Manager (1901), owner of ‘Ward and Silver’ Iron Foundry (1911 to 1921), Warden of Holy Trinity Hospital (1939). Married: Minnie Maud Scott in 1908.  Service Record: David is listed as a member of the Long Melford Volunteer Training Corps in 1915 although it is not known how active a role he played.[3]  Died: Long Melford on 13.2.1940.[4]

Ward, Herbert William – Born: Bucklesham, Suffolk on 28.5.1869.[5]  Parents: John Ward of Brightwell, Suffolk (Blacksmith) and Ann Elizabeth [née Skippen].  Family Connections: Brother of David Hayward Ward [b1866] and nephew of David Ward [b1817].   Home: Lower Street, Bucklesham, Suffolk (1871 to 1891), Holly Cottage, Little Bealings, Suffolk (1901), Hillside, Little Bealings (1911) to [1941].  Occupation: Blacksmith (1891 to 1911), Shoeing Smith and Agricultural Engineer (1921), Master Blacksmith retired (1939), Engineer [1940] Married: Alice Lewis in 1911.  Commercial Record: In his brother David’s Will a stipulation was made that Herbert be given the option to buy the Ward & Silver business including Foundry House, Buildings and Machinery, for £4,500 payable over ten years at 5% interest.  Should Herbert choose not to buy the business it would be run by the Trustees until it was sold.  The option was never taken up and the business eventually purchased by Webb Engineering.[6]  Died: Little Bealings, Suffolk on 14.2.1941.[7]

Ward, William – Born: Brightwell, Suffolk in 1829. Parents: Thomas Ward (Wheelwright) and Lydia [née Hayward].  Family Connections: Brother of David Ward [b1817].  Home: Brightwell, Suffolk (1841), Foundry House, Hall Street, Long Melford (1851), Hall Street, Long Melford (1861 to 1901).  Occupation: Whitesmith (1851), Steam Engine Fitter & Smith (1861), Foreman Farm Implement Maker (1871 to 1881), Iron Foundry Manager (1891), Farm Implement Maker (1901).  Married: Mary Steed of Long Melford in 1851.  Commercial Record: William was left the business of Ward & Silver upon the death of his brother David in 1896.[8]  Died: Long Melford on 28.11.1907.[9]

Related Biographies

Silver, James – Born: Melton, Suffolk in 1814. Parents: James Silver (Carpenter) and Mary [née Pipe].  Family Connections: Brother-in-law of David Ward [b1817].  Home: Melton, Suffolk (1841), Foundry House, Hall Street, Long Melford (1851 to 1881).  Occupation: Engineer (1841), Iron Founder (1861 to 1881), Iron Founder, Gas Proprietor and Farmer [1885].  Commercial Record: James went into partnership with David Ward in 1843 establishing the firm of Ward & Silver Iron Foundry in Long Melford.  Died: Long Melford on 6.9.1885.

Notes – [1] Suffolk Chronicle and Ipswich Journal 13.3.1841 and Chelmsford Chronicle 28.1.1842.  [2] 1939 Register.  [3] Suffolk and Essex Free Press 10.3.1915 & 29.12.1915.  [4] National Probate Calendar.  [5] 1939 Register.  [6] I am grateful to Georgina Southall for this research.  [7] National Probate Calendar.  [8] I am grateful to Georgina Southall for this research.  [9] National Probate Calendar.

Foundry House in 1865
Ward & Silver workers circa 1900 with (possibly William Ward front row centre)
Ward & Silver workers at the foundry gate circa 1900

Genealogical Tables

Research by David Gevaux MA © 2023
Additional research on the Ward family by Georgina Southall

We then started researching David Ward and found to our surprise that he had settled in West Suffolk in a place called Long Melford and became a highly successful businessman in the iron foundry business.  Then a puzzle arose: although David’s brothers and father were moderately successful tradesmen, for example wheelwrights, blacksmiths, carpenters etc they all seemed to stay around the Brightwell/Bucklesham area, setting up homes and businesses in the surrounding villages. David had not appeared in any of the census returns of the other members of the family. Also, another son William was only on the 1841 census with the family, aged 11 years, thereafter he had disappeared, which was another mystery.  The question was how did David acquire the skills to set up as an iron founder and the financial resources to set up in business as he did in another part of Suffolk?  The rest of the family remained as village tradesmen around the area they were born.  Once we realised David lived and worked in Melford we read the relevant records, these revealed the extent of his personal and business life. Also, at last we found William the youngest brother living and working with David in Melford, at least that mystery was solved.   We found much about David’s life in Melford and have over the years built up an excellent picture of the life he led there, which will eventually be put into a separate article.  However, for all that we still did not know how his good fortune came about, for example where did he receive his apprenticeship and the money for it, also the finances to set up his business, after all he was one of six brothers?  My mother wrote to several appropriate local Suffolk businesses in the 1970’s to enquire about records they may have had for apprentices in the early 19th century, without success. For nearly 40 years this remained an unanswered question about David, and we thought that we would never find out. In September 2010 I was researching the ancestors and had decided to work on the Hayward’s.  Researching is so easy now with the internet and census from all over the country can be checked at a click of a mouse, whereas before one just concentrated a search on the most likely areas. I decided to put together as many census returns for as many of the Hayward’s I could find, charting their lives through the 19th century.

When it came to Susan Hayward, I started at 1841 as I had done for all the rest of the family.  I eventually found Susan not in Suffolk as I had expected but, in a place, called Greenstead Green, nr Halsted in Essex.  Susan’s occupation was described as an Iron Founder!  Her unmarried sister Jane is living with her, also two nephews, David Ward 20, an Iron Founder and Joseph Peck aged 5 years!  My delight in finding where David was in 1841 and subsequently how he came by his good fortune after all this time, I cannot express.  After all those years the missing piece to this puzzle was found.  Thus, David was taken for some reason, maybe because he was given the same name as one of her brothers, under Aunt Susan’s wing.  He was taught a trade then clearly helped into business because ten years later in 1851, he was well and truly set up in Long Melford living in Hall Street and had married Mary Silver eight years earlier.  Set up in partnership with Mary’s brother James Silver, they had an Iron Foundry business which at that time employed 11 men and 11 boys.  With David and Mary was Davids’s brother William Ward, described as a Whitesmith Journeyman, James Silver his partner and brother-in-law, also Mary’s brother William Silver, who is also a Whitesmith Journeyman, all three men are unmarried.  To complete the household in Hall Street there was a niece and nephew, James and Susan Silver, 7 and 9 respectively.  They also had a servant.  By the time David died in 1896, he was not only the owner of the Iron Foundry business but had many properties around the Melford area, in his will David left the equivalent of £611,023.48 in 2005 value*. (See David’s will and newspaper report of the death and funeral of David from 24th December 1896).

A synopsis of David Ward’s will
Death of David Ward

David Ward seemed to take in turn his youngest brother under his wing and eventually into his business, making William Ward a prosperous man. William died in 1907 and left the equivalent of £624,940.62 in 2005 value*. (See William’s will). William benefited from his brother David’s will, inheriting the Iron Foundry business plus all due from David’s real and personal estates.  Did David favour his brother William in recognition of the kindness shown to him by his aunt?  David never had any children, but William did, naming one of his daughters Susan Hayward Ward, although she died unmarried in 1905 and relatively young, she was a wealthy woman, leaving the equivalent of £30,190.47 in 2005 value*. (See Susan Hayward Ward’s will).  Susan Hayward Ward benefited from Susan Hayward’s will, she was left Aunt Susan’s Family Bible and a book, The Life of Christ.  She also benefited from David Ward’s will; she was left four houses in Hall Street, Melford, £200, plus a chest of drawers and its contents.

A report of the Funeral of David Ward of Long Melford in 1896

In the report of David Ward’s funeral, a brother Robert is mentioned, we believe that this should read Richard. After extensive research we have never found a brother called Robert, however David’s older brother Richard was still alive, and I believe this was him attending the funeral.

Synopsis of Susan Hayward Ward’s Will (William Ward’s daughter)

So, who else in the Ward family was given the Hayward name and what do we know of them to date?

David Hayward Ward – David Hayward Ward was the fifth of John Ward’s sons.  David was born on 15th July 1866 in Bucklesham, to John and his second wife, Ann, (nee Skippen).  David became a carpenter and by 1891 he was living with his Uncle David Ward in Long Melford.  By 1901 he was living with his Uncle William Ward, (David Ward had died by this time) and had risen to the position of Manager at the Iron Works in Melford.  In 1909 at the age of 43 he married Minnie Maude Scott and in 1911 they were living at the Iron Foundry House, Hall St., Long Melford, David had inherited the business from his Uncle William.  In David Ward’s will David Hayward Ward was left £600 and a request to William that he was to be given a share or interest in the business at some future date.  He was his cousin Susan Hayward Ward’s executor for her will and was left £10 to upkeep her mother, father, brother and Uncle David’s graves in Long Melford churchyard.  In William’s will in 1908, he was left two thirds of the business, Foundry House, all buildings with machinery and everything contained within the two rods of land, which is about 2,420 square yards or half an acre. Also, the pony & cart with harness. The silver cup awarded to the firm of Ward & Silver at the Suffolk Agricultural Show in 1870 for the best collection of farm implements shown and the silver medal awarded for the best cart, shown in the same show in 1888. Plus, two cottages in Bridge Street, stock, plant and cash in bank used for running the business.

A synopsis of William Ward’s will.

When David Hayward Ward died in 1940, he left a gross £356 0s 6d, today’s value £10,225.04. *

Thus, the business started by David Ward & James Silver in 1843, built up to a gross value of £10,202 8s 7d by the year 1896. Built up further by William Ward between 1896 and 1907 to a gross value of £10,952 6s 10 and, finalised in 1940 to the gross value of £356 0s 6d. David Hayward Ward had had the business 32 years, (see will).

A synopsis of David Hayward Ward’s will.

Fred Hayward Ward:

Fred was a grandson of John Ward’s, Alfred Ward’s son.  Alfred was John’s third son born in 1857 by his first wife Emma Ward, (nee Rush). In the 1881, 1891 and 1901 census his occupation is as an Iron Turner Founder in Ipswich & Wickham Market.  Alfred was David Hayward Ward’s half-brother.  Fred was born in 1883 in Ipswich. Alfred’s half-brother Herbert William Ward was remembered in David Hayward Ward’s will. Herbert left £80,356.29 in today’s money, he in turn left this to Fred Hayward Ward.  Fred married a Gertrude Catchpole in 1913, they had a son who they called David John Hayward Ward, he died in 2004.  I could not find conclusive evidence of a will for Fred.

An account of Georgina Southall's visit to Gertrude Ward

Evelyn Hayward Ward – Evelyn was a granddaughter of Samuel Ward by his son Arthur.  Evelyn was born about 1900 in Worcester.  She was remembered, along with her sister and other cousin’s in her Uncle Sam’s will.  Evelyn received £76 8s 0d in Sam’s will in 1951.

Footnote: Arthur Ward Evelyn’s father along with other cousin’s, was left £50 in his Uncle William’s will in 1907.

Also, if we look at most of the names of the original Hayward children, Lydia, Samuel, Jane, Asa, David, Susan, Rhoda and Lucy, we see them repeated through the Ward Family and their descendants.

To conclude, I hope the above show’s that the Hayward’s were a prosperous and prominent family of the time. The generations that followed were anxious to be associated with them and that they should not be forgotten.

Further work to be done: Investigation of Susan Hayward.  There is a record at The Essex Record Office appertaining to Susan, a Robert Hayward and others regarding her brother Asa’s estate. I hope that I can obtain a copy of this sometime in the future; I hope too that this might shed some more light on her brother Asa. See above.

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