Hester Dester: From Bramcote Hall to the Workhouse

Esther (‘Hester’) Jackson Jones was born in Grendon. She was baptised in Grendon on 14th April 1816. Only the mother is identified in the baptismal register.

Hester married Joseph Dester of Bramcote in 1839.

Census records

In the 1841 census (aged 26), she was living at Bramcote House with her husband Joseph (60),  farmer, born at Bramcote and son John Dester, aged two, also born at Bramcote.

In the 1851 census Bramcote Hall, Joseph (70) is listed as a farmer of 852 acres, employing 16 men, 8 boys and 10 women. Hester is 36 with two children – John, 11 and Joseph, two. There are also five servants, one visitor, and one cousin.

By the 1861 census they have moved to Bramcote House, Mostyn Street, Llandudno. Joseph is registered as a Lodging Housekeeper.

Joseph’s will

Joseph died on 9th February 1864:

with the will of the effects of Joseph Dester formally of Arkall in the parish of Tamworth in the County of Stafford but late of Llandudno in the County of Carnavon Farmer who died 9 February 1864 at Llandudno was granted at the Principal Registry to Hester Dester Warton in the parish of Polesworth in the County of Warwick widow the relict the residuary legatee.

Widowhood and workhouse

In the 1871 census Hester is back in Warton, listed as a boarder with Helen Goodwin. By 1881 she is in Atherstone Union Workhouse and listed as a former governess – was she originally employed by Joseph as a governess to children from a previous marriage?

Hester died in 1885 in the workhouse, she was buried in Warton graveyard on 25th August. Despite dying in the workhouse, she has a large stone gravestone.

More from Bramcote
More from Workhouses