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George A. Hodson

Born - November 18th, 1844

Died - April 26th, 1917

Lucy Hodson (Baker)

Born - September, 1845

Died - June 19th, 1924


 

 

Notes On The Hodson Family

Written By George Norman Hodson 1982

(George Norman is James Herberts nephew)

 

George A. Hodson the 5th son (of Richard Hodson) was born on November 18th 1844. He was apprentice to a mining surveyor after his education at Wolverhampton Grammar School. After the termination of his articles, he spent some time in the office of the town surveyor of Bilston & Willenhall. His connection with Loughborough started when he took a job in the Beaumanor Estate Office. When the position of Surveyor to the Loughborough Local Board became vacant he was the successful applicant. Old newspaper cuttings that I have, show that this was a very controversial appointment, as he was only 23 at the time. Such remarks as "putting over our lives in the hands of this callow youth" were quoted.

 

He must have been a man of very strong opinions, too ambitious to remain as surveyor to a small local board and he began to develop a private practice as a waterworks engineer. This prospered and the time inevitably came when he could no longer combine the two jobs. He parted with the local board, rather, according to my cuttings, in wrath and ill feelings, but he was soon back, this time as an elected member and shortly afterward became it's chairman, a position which he held until incorporation of the Borough in 1887. From then on, his national reputation as a waterworks engineer, his work as a consulting engineer and his practice in arbitration work kept him busy.

Although he continued to live in Loughborough he had offices in London and engineering schemes all over the country. In fact his only work in connection with Loughborough in this period was the Blakbrook Reservoir, completed the year before his death. He died on the 25th of April 1907.

He married Lucy baker (born 19 June 1845) in 1867. She was a native of Willenhall and they were married in St. Giles Church there She survived him for many years dying in 1924.

She had eleven children altogether, three of whom died in infancy. My youthful recollection of her was of a small well dressed Queen Victoria type figure, permanently sitting on the couch. As a small boy I thought she had no legs as her dress came right to the floor and she never stood up.

I have very little information about the bakers, but believe they were solicitors in Willenhall.

 

George's brother James, Richard's 6th son, followed his brother to Loughborough and with him founded the Hathern Station Brick and Terra Cotta Co. in 1874. James never married. He ran the Brickworks until his death in 1997. After this George Albert (Bob) took over.

That, I think is about all I can tell you of the Hodson family!

Considering Richards six son's it's not surprising that there should be a Naval Chaplain named Hodson and he looks like Philip!

 

George Norman Hodson

February 1982

 

Written in response to a letter from David Pare (son of Florence) who is interested in geneology and wanted information about the Hodson side of his family.

David lives at Abbey Mill House, Colebrook Street Winchester SO23 9LH.


 

More Notes On The Hodson Family

Written By George Norman Hodson 1996

 

About George A. Hodson

 

Although he died before I was born his memory was still strong enough in the district for me, when grown up, to be told both by his friends and his enemies of his effects on the area, and with his battle, no holds barred, to bring Loughborough into the 20Th century.

 

His methods were those of a typical Victorian innovator, rough and tough, resented by those who wanted no change but now, a century later, part of the folk history of Loughborough's rise from a small country centre.

 

As an example, he realised that the future growth of the town depended on an adequate supply of good water to replace the brook that was contaminated and the cause of much disease. He saw that there was only one local valley through which a brook ran, had the shape, narrow at the lower end, across which a dam could be built, to make a large reservoir.

 

He persuaded the Town Council to back the idea and bought the site from the landowner just hours before a party from the town of Leicester, alerted to the idea, arrived to make a larger bid.

 

So Loughborough built and owned the Blackbrook Reservoir and Leicester had to seek it's water from Derbyshire. Now of course all local water supplies are under control of the Severn Trent Water Authority.

 

George was also a great enthusiast for new ideas. He built a glass clad studio complete with dark room to indulge his hobby of photography. As my father told me, it was basic stuff then. One started with a plain sheet of glass, made up mixtures of chemicals with which to coat it as a negative, took the picture, in strong light quickly before the solution on the coated glass went "off" and back to the darkroom to develop it. The sitter had to be ready in a chair with, hopefully an invisible neck clamp to ensure that there was no movement during the lengthy exposure.

 

However there are some pretty good portraits in an album I have.

 

George always owned the first petrol driven motor car to come into the town and had his house lit by electricity from a generator driven by an oil engine in one of the outbuildings.

 


 

 

The Next Generation - George Hodson's Children

 

Most of my information comes from photocopies of notes I wrote about the family. From this it is clear that the family began to drift apart and my latest information only covers those who stayed in the Loughborough area.

 

Here is a list of George and Lucy's Children (From a family bible).

 

1. Francis George Harold  

 

 1869

Lived only a few hours

2. Frederic Walter

January 23rd 1871 Consulting Engineer

Married Gertrude Pickering

Died May 5th 1948

3.  Florence May(Florrie)

 

May 12th 1873

Died

4.  George Albert(Bob)

 

January 10th 1875  

Died April 22nd 1938

5.  Beatrice Lucy

 

1876

Lived only a few hours

6. James Herbert

July 11th 1877

Married Kate Marshall Emigrated to Canada

Died 1957

7.  Frank

November 2nd 1978 1st Married Ellen Marshall -

2nd Nellie White

Died 1955

8.  Richard Ernest

 

November 5th 1879

Lived only 2 months

9.  Edith Alice (Edie)

November 7th 1880

Never married

Died January 17th 1912

10. Lucy Ethel

October 20th 1882

Married Stenson Turner 1917

Died 1960

11. Richard Edward (Bill)

November 12th 1884

Did not marry

Died June 10th 1917


 

 

 


 


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