The Friends of St. Peter's Berkhamsted

Friends of St Peter's, Great Berkhamsted

Stephen Holloway (d.1866) and Lucy Holloway (1795 – 1878)

Grave Number 61

Stephen Holloway 8th January 1788 died 26th January 1866. Lucy Holloway 25th July 1795 – 10th February 1878 aged 82

Stephen (1788-1866) was Berkhamsted born and bred, but probably trained as a plasterer and paperhanger in London. It was here that he married his first wife, Mary Bates (from Berkhamsted) in 1814, and they had, it seems, 5 children. Thomas was the eldest and would succeed his father in the house decorating business. Sadly, Mary died young in 1821 and was buried in the churchyard.

Stephen had re-married in less than a year. His second wife, Lucy, was from Yorkshire. Together, they had nine children.

By 1851, he was employing 10 men. Stephen also dabbled in development – he owned two houses in the High Street and also for a time ran the Five Bells in Berkhamsted (Bill’s – current restaurant) – he was here in 1839.  “At one period the Five Bells is said to have been notorious for bouts between bare-fisted fighters in the yard behind the inn. It was also the HQ for the Town band; it embraced nearly all the known instruments of the day, which were sustained by the principal tradesmen on the town.

Clearly at the nexus of social networks, Stephen Holloway appears to have been a highly respected citizen in the town; in 1859 we learn that he was a Trustee of Balshaw’s charity and was also a Steward at the Town Ball at the Kings Arms in that year.

At some point, probably in the 1850’s, Stephen and the family moved into Incent’s House in the High Street– it may have been Stephen who divided the property into two occupations. Being situated opposite the Church, it was fitting that the future Rector of Berkhamsted, John W Cobb, should be lodging there, whilst performing the duties of curate at Northchurch.

When Stephen died in 1866 (‘deeply regretted’), Thomas took over the property and lived here until the opening years of the twentieth century.

This large memorial had sunk into the uneven ground, had twisted and the capping stones had started to slide off the base.  This is one of the 19 memorials which was restored in 2018.

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