The Linfield Family of Angmering

The Linfield family of Angmering was established by William Linfield (born c1805) who appears to have come to the village from Rudgwick in the 1820s. There is no evidence that he was born there and no evidence of Linfields inhabiting Rudgwick until the 1830s. Linfield families had, however, been living in Horsham and surrounding districts since the 17th Century.

The first record we have of William is from the Angmering Parish Registers when, on 8 June 1829, he married Lucy Langley who originally came from the nearby village of Clapham having been baptised there on 27 January 1807. The baptism of their first child, Thomas, took place on 18 October 1829 which described William as a bricklayer and from Rudgwick. Censuses from 1841 onwards document the growing family. Currently, we have no knowledge when William died but we do know that he was still alive at the time of the 1891 Census. He was 86 and a widower living at Littleworth Cottages in the High Street (next to The Spotted Cow). He was described as a builder and his unmarried son Joseph, a bricklayer's labourer, was living with him as was his unmarried daughter, Emma, who acted as his housekeeper.

What was remarkable about the extended Linfield family of Angmering was that the vast proportion of the males were bricklayers or builders and, together with the Hammond family, they must have built most of the houses constructed in Angmering from the mid-19th Century until the early 20th Century.

However, the population of Angmering remained fairly static from the 1890s until after WW1 and, perhaps due to lack of demand for new houses during that period, branches of the family began to move to other nearby areas (such as Littlehampton and Lyminster) where the demand for their services and skills was probably greater. Others gravitated to London and elsewhere and one, Charles Linfield (b.1872), seems to have become a college servant at Oxford University by 1901.

World War 1 also took its toll on the family. We know that young William Denn Linfield died on the Somme in 1916 and his uncle, Joseph Henry Linfield was killed in 1919 on the North West Frontier, Pakistan. Their names are inscribed on the war memorial in The Square. These two Linfields are also commemorated by having a road named after them on the new Bramley Green development - i.e. Linfield Close.

Not mentioned on the War Memorial is Harry Linfield (born c1881), son of Edwin and Caroline Linfield, and cousin of Joseph Henry Linfield (see above). On his parents gravestone in St Margaret's churchyard is an inscription which states that Harry (37) died in November 1918 while on duty with the Hong Kong Police.

On a happier note, it is recorded that Mabel Linfield won a prize as the prettiest girl over 14 at the 1917 annual Angmering Fair.

Over the years branches of the family lived at numerous locations in the village including Littleworth Cotages, The Spotted Cow, central High Street, The Cottrells, Bakers Row, The Square, and Pear Tree Cottage.

All known 19th Century Angmering Linfields (40+) are contained in a single page family tree in Adobe PDF format which can be viewed by clicking here (use magnification facility if necessary). A three page family tree (more legible for printing) in Adobe PDF format and data in other formats is available if required from Angmering Village Life - see Contacts page.

N A Rogers-Davis
July 2005

(Angmering Village Life acknowledges the assistance of Karen Thurley in developing the Linfield family tree.)

Page updated: 3 August 2005