Pile Family

Legal Right to Village Life

Sheep Stealing

Swing Riots

Flour List

Terrier Survey

George Pile Died

Murder at The Cricketers

Local Affairs

19th Century Ends

Catchlove Family


Scott Family


Westbourne Family



PostOffice 1851

Kelly's Directory 1911
Listed Buildings
The River Ems

The River Westbourne
Wartime Experiences
Church War Memorial

Village Cemetery

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A village history in West Sussex


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The 1881 census again shows William Pile now 56 years old and a labourer on the railways, Harriet Griffin is now living with him, her occupation is given as laundress, their children James, David and Louisa are still at home and there is also a grand-daughter, Ellen, although it is not clear who her father is. Also in the village is Charlotte with her husband George Crees, they now have ten children; Ernest, 23 a till maker; Harry, 17 a brickmaker (like his father); Lizzie, 17 a domestic servant though not employed at this time; William, 15 a “general” labourer; Martha, 12; Henrietta, 11; Charles, 9; Frances, 7; Florence, 4 all listed in the census as scholars) and Mabel aged just two.

Elsewhere in the village Sarah Bargent, a baker’s wife, had given birth to a daughter the day before the census was taken (April 3), listed in the household is a nurse Jane Kennett, she is George and Martha’s second daughter who had previously married William Kennett.

There is no evidence of William Kennett in Westbourne, as a seaman he is presumably at sea.

Later that year James Pile married Ila Goble, the eighteen-year-old daughter of Edward Charles and Martha Goble.

On November 29 1883 Charlotte and George Creese’s son William died of gastric fever at the age of just seventeen years and was buried in Westbourne cemetery with full military honours as he was a member of the local defence force. Less than a year later, on October 3 1884 his brother, Harry died aged 24. and was buried with William in Westbourne cemetery.

In January 1885 William Pile's son David followed his elder brother William into the Royal Navy, he signed up on 21 June for the standard term of twelve years serving on seven different ships and shore establishments. On completion of his service he re-signed on 29 June 1897.

On 8 April 1898 David, a leading stoker on the battleship Nile at Devonport was on a small craft with three Royal Marines and a civilian when it capsized and David drowned, the other occupants were rescued. The occupants of the boat were, according to onlookers behaving recklessly.

The last census of the nineteenth century, taken in 1891, records two Pile families, William and Harriet, both 66 and now (apparently) married, William being employed as a railway platelayer. Their son William a 39-year-old naval pensioner is also in the household together with their granddaughter, 13-year-old Ellen Griffin.

Elsewhere is William and Harriet’s son James and his wife Ila. James is now a 31-year-old bricklayer’s labourer; Ila is 28 and was born in Westbourne. They have two sons James who is six and William, four.

Jane and William Kennett's sons Charles and Joseph are recorded on the fishing vessel Heroine. Charles Kennett is the master, 35 years old and married, his brother Joseph is a 23 year old single able seaman, both were born at Emsworth. The census page bears Charles Kennett's signature.

In 1892 an epidemic of influenza swept the country and in early January both William and Harriet Pile caught the infection, Harriet suffered for six days, the last four exacerbated by bronchitis, until she died on 11 January. William lasted a further eight days dying on 19 January.

Harriet's death certificate gives the informant as W. Pile, son whereas Williams' death certificate says his informant was Harriet Griffin, stepdaughter; suggesting that both children were Harriet's but Harriet was in fact not William's natural daughter, this raises speculation as to William's father. William was registered as William Thomas Pile Griffin suggesting that William was his father but he was five years older than Harriet.

In 1894, William Kennett the husband of Jane died aged 68 and the following year Jane died at the age of 63.

On 6 April 1896 William Pile died aged 46. His death certificate describes him as a naval pensioner and that he died of chronic gout and diarrhoea, the death was registered the same day by his sister Harriet who uses the name Pile not Griffin.

The first census of the twentieth century was taken on the night of 31 March 1901 and records the only surviving Pile household in Westbourne, that of James Pile a 41-year-old bricklayers labourer, his wife Ila is now 38 and three sons are now recorded, 16-year-old James and 14-year-old William are also bricklayers labourers, the youngest is nine-year-old Harry.

James’ sister Harriett Griffin is living in River Street; she is 47 years old and a seamstress working on her own account. She has a boarder, 33 year old James Newland a brickmaker’s carter and also a native of Westbourne. Harriett is the only one of James’ siblings found do far.


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