Richard Manton (1868-1937)

Richard Manton reportedly started with the firm in 1881[1], when he would have been just 13 or 14 years old; however, this is probably incorrect. He was born in Holbeach, Lincolnshire, to parents, Edward, an agricultural labourer, and Sarah. In 1871, the family were living in Station Road, Holbeach, with their three sons and two daughters. Ten years later, still living in Station Road, now with three daughters and two sons, including Richard, aged 13, who was working as an agricultural labourer.

The family moved to Loughborough prior to 1890[2], when they were living at No. 22, Cobden Street. In 1891, still living with his parents, Richard Manton, aged 23, was now a “horticultural fitter”, presumably a hot-water heating fitter; whilst his father, aged 65, was a corn porter. Also, living at home was his brother John, aged 20, a dyer’s labourer, and his two sisters, Sarah, aged 18, and Mary, 15, both hosiery makers-up.

In late 1892, Richard married Emma Spray (1867-1928), the daughter of Charles and Harriet, who was born in Loughborough in 1867. In 1891, Emma, working as a hosiery stitcher, was lodging with Henry Goodyear and family at No. 23, Cobden Street, next door to Richard Manton. This is, no doubt, how they met. By 1901[3], he was a “hotwater fitter”, living at No. 25, Old King Street[4], Loughborough, with his wife, two daughters, Harriet, aged 4, and Lucy May, aged 1 and a son, Edward, aged 8. The family may have moved to Old King Street as early as 1894, when a T. Manton was living at No. 25[5]. Richard Manton was now describing himself as a They appear to have left Old King Street by 1903[6] and by 1905[7] were living at No. 95, Station Street, much closer to the Cumberland Road factory. In 1911, still living in Station Street, the couple had had eight children, 2 of whom had died young. Their remaining six children were still living at home: Edward[8], aged 18, an apprentice iron moulder at the Empress Works of Herbert Morris Ltd[9].; Harriet, aged14; Lucy May, 11; Florence Maud, 9; Edith Ellen, 7; Sarah, 3. Also living with them was Hannah’s widowed father, aged 77 and possibly still working as a framework knitter. According to the census, the house had 5 rooms, presumably with 3 bedrooms to sleep nine people; two parents; one teenage son; five daughters, one a teenager and a 77-year old.


No. 95, Station Street, Loughborough

Emma Manton died aged 56, on 22nd March 1928, whilst still living at No. 95, Station Street[10]. Richard Manton died on 7th March 1937, aged 69, whilst living at No. 93, Cobden Street, Loughborough[11]. He left effects valued at £385 17s. 2d., with his daughter, Harriett Elizabeth Hallam, wife of John Hallam, acting as executor[12].



  1. A Century of Progress – a History of Messenger & Company, Limited. 1858-1958 (Unpublished).
  2. Wills’ Loughborough Almanac & Street Directory for 1890.
  3. Census Return.
  4. The term “Old” was used to differentiate the original King Street, which ran for one hundred yards or so from its junction with Leicester Road, with that of New King Street which formed an extension from the end of King Street upto the junction with Wharncliffe Road and Moor Lane.
  5. Wills’ Loughborough Almanac & Street Directory for 1894.
  6. Wills’ Loughborough Almanac & Street Directory for 1903.
  7. Wills’ Loughborough Almanac & Street Directory for 1905.
  8. /page42.htm Corporal Edward Manton died of his wounds on 26th March 1916, aged 23 and is buried in Aubigny Communal Cemetery Extension, north-west of Arras, Grave 1.A.10.
  10. The Loughborough Monitor & News, 27th March 1928.
  11. The Loughborough Monitor & News, 11th March 1937.
  12. Probate Record.