Watson of Woolley and Cudworth


This web page is under revision I would welcome any relevant  information.

          First a note for those interested in the history of Woolley village.  In the Domesday Book the entry for Woolley lists it as Kings land together with a village called Santone or Sacton. There were 12 Carucates of land to be ploughed the Anglo Saxon owner had been Thorketill.  The site of  Santone-Sacton is lost but it could have been on the land now called Woolley Warren to the north of the junction of Warren Lane and Windhill Lane.  Sackup lane from Darton leads to this site, the name of this lane could be  Sac from  Sacton and Cop a hill top, making Sac Cop the hill top near the lost village site.

          St. Peters church registers show that John Watson Yeoman of Woolley died in 1749, he had three sons; Benjamin, John & George. Benjamin had a son Richard Watson 1st. born 1751.


A Richard Watson 2nd. born 1781  but not in Woolley may have been his son.  John, George & Benjamin were farmers in Woolley and in 1784 Mary Watson died she was the wife of John Watson of Woolley Edge. Woolley Edge is a high ridge of land to the west of Woolley village. Woolley Edge Lane runs along the top of this ridge.


         There was a farm called 'Woolley Edge' on the foot path to Molly Hurst Lane marked on the 1856 6" OS map. It was on more sheltered land a few hundred yards east of Woolley Edge Lane near Eccle Hill. This building is also marked on Thomas Jeffries 1775 map of Yorkshire. By 1907 it was known as Elder House and had a wind pump to draw water from its well. Today a few large stones are all that is left of the farm house. It would have been replaced by the new Woolley Edge farm (now High House) built on Woolley Edge Lane. In 1861 this was a farm of 200 acres occupied by Joseph Plant who was born in Derbyshire. At  that  time  a family  called Taylor  were  stone  masons  living on  Woolley  Edge,  and  a  coal  mine  had been  opened.  There  were  also  quite  a  few  shepherds  living  in the  village. In 1806  Thomas Watson of Woolley was a blacksmith at Notton. His forge was just to the west of Notton Green.

          Richard Watson 2nd. married Sarah who was born in Cudworth  but he was not on the Staincross militia list for 1806 which included Cudworth. They had three children all born in Woolley. Richard Watson 3rd.born in 1821, George & Sarah both born in 1826. By 1838 the family had moved to Carrs Lane Lower Cudworth where they were tenant farmers to the lord of the manor Myrick Banks. The site of the farm house is now occupied by two bungalows.

          Richard Watson 3rd. married Elizabeth from Doncaster and continued to farm in Lower Cudworth. They had three sons Richard Watson 4th. born 1848, George & Thomas. Richard & George became butchers in Upper Cudworth while Thomas took the Bridge Inn at Monk Bretton. Richard 4th. married Anne Blenkinsop they had two sons John born 1889 and Richard Watson  5th.born 1891. I am Richard Watson 6th. born in 1940.

        Another Watson family of note lived at Hemsworth. Joseph Watson born in 1775 was still working as a stone mason in 1841.  James Watson born 1780 Richard Watson born 1785 both of Hemsworth volunteered
to serve in the Staincross Miltitia at the time of a possible invasion by the French in 1805/6.

        This Richard Watson was involved in the Luddite uprising of 1812 when he threatened to break Mr. Wilson's threshing machine into a thousand pieces.  By 1841  he  had  become a Teazel  Merchant and  lived  in  Hemsworth  with  his  wife  Mary and their  three  children  Elisabeth,  Anne,  and  Henry.

       By 1881 Henry Watson had become a policeman and was living with his family in Wakefield.