Dorothy and Henry

Dorothy Faber or aunt Dorothy as I knew her was my great aunt (my grandmother’s sister on my fathers side). In 1960 she married Henry (Hal) Grey Faber. Dorothy was Henry’s second wife and the couple were married at  Holy Trinity Church, Micklegate, York in 1960.

Dorothy and Hal lived in the village of Husthwaite in Yorkshire which is situated about 17 miles north of York. Husthwaite is an ancient settlement, one of the oldest buildings being St Nicholas’ Parish Church dating from the twelfth century, which, with the village green, forms the centre of the village. The village is a designated conservation area and is adjacent to the North Yorkshire Moors National Park.

They lived in a house called Little Worsall, situated between the Methodist Chapel, a newer house and The Manor House which was once a farm.  However, until I came to write this piece I never knew the name of the property or the house number.  Letters were addressed simply to Mrs D M Faber,  Husthwaite, York.  ‘The postman knows the house’, my parents were told.

Dorothy and Hal lived at Little Worsall for six years. Henry died in 1966 before I was born but Dorothy continued to live there, with her sister Molly until 1994, then alone until her own death in 1998.

Dorothy and Molly.

Worsall Grange

The 1939 register records Henry living at Worsall Grange, Stokesley, Yorkshire (North Riding), England, working as a solicitor and living with his wife Ellen G Faber and daughter Elizabeth H F Faber. Living with them are two domestic servants, Bridget Dowd and Madelaine Nugent

Copy of the 1939 register showing Henry Faber.

Today Worsall Grange is a listed building, described in estate agent particulars as a delightful grade II listed detached country house set in 2.44 acres approx, between the villages of Low Worsall and Kirklevington, well placed for the thriving market town of Yarm and with a small paddock laid to grass that extends to 18 acres.

The Cleveland and Teeside History Society record the place name Low Worsall as ‘Modern English low + place-name Wercesal, Wirceshel, Werchesal(e) 1086 Wi- Wyrkesale 1285-1367, Wirsal (1316) 16th, 1369, Parva Worsall“Little Worsall” 1483.’

Little Worsall

It seems that when Henry moved to Husthwaite, his new home was named after Worsall Grange.  The Husthwaite History Society records the following information about Little Worsall.

In the seventeenth century the property described here had 4½ acres at the back, stretching down to Elphin Lane. Later this tract was farmed as part of the Manor House land and by 1841 some rearrangement of boundaries had taken place. The tenants of the early eighteenth century were called Wood and survival of the fieldnames Wood Garths suggests a reconstruction.  This leads to the conclusion that the frontage of the old tenement would have extended from Little Worsall to Colton House.

Several facts about this property in the early seventeenth century suggest that it was of importance in the management of the manor. It lay alongside the Hall and Hall Garths. It belonged to the family who held the lease and hence lordship of the manor. It had a dovecote (the only one known in Husthwaite), a privilege of manorial lords.

Little Worsall
Image of Little Worsall and information about the people who lived there.

Little Worsall


Dorothy Margaret Clarke was born in Northamptonshire in 1904. She was the daughter of Louisa Jane Shortland and  Albert Edward William Clarke,  a police sergeant in the Northamptonshire Constabulary. She had one brother named Edward Alexander and three sisters, Cecily Mary (known as Molly who lived with her at Little Worsall from 1966 – 1994), Kitty Alexandra and my grandmother Delia Eileen.

Louisa Jane Clarke (nee Shortland) and daughters.

The 1939 register shows Dorothy, working as a school teacher, living in the Morrison household at Faceby Manor, Faceby, Stokesley R.D., Yorkshire (North Riding), England. Today Faceby Manor Lodge is a Grade II listed building.

1939 register entry showing Dorothy Clarke.

It also appears that Dorothy worked as a governess. One of the most interesting things Dorothy sent to me was the letter below from a Miss Lennox-Carr of Piccadilly (according to the biography of the historical novelist Georgette Heyer, Miss Lennox-Carr ran a registry office for governesses), recommending Dorothy for the post of governess to the young King of Iraq. I don’t believe that Dorothy took up the offer but nevertheless it is a lovely piece of family history.


In January 2022 I was contacted by Tony Walker who had seen this blog. He had come across a document for Miss Carr’s agency when sorting through some some historical papers and asked if I would like a copy. The document can be viewed below.

Terms and conditions for Miss Lennox-Carr's Ladies' Employment and School Agency.

The things I remember about Dorothy are firstly her two dogs, Otter and Toby – sausage dogs, one smooth haired and one wired haired.  The second, the incredible view from her garden of the Kilburn white horse, one of the most famous landmarks in North Yorkshire and one of the most northerly turf-cut figures in Britain. Dating from 1857, the outline of the horse was marked out by the Kilburn village schoolmaster and his pupils. Finally, the way she encouraged my interest in my family from a young age, with letters, stories and photos. Dorothy is hugely responsible for my love of history today..

Henry in uniform.

Henry G Faber in uniform.


Henry Grey Faber was a solicitor. His occupation is recorded in census returns and I have also found mentions of Henry’s legal career in the Gazette newspaper.

The 1891 census shows a Henry  G Faber was born in Durham in 1887, to Thomas Faber, aged 30 (born 1861 in Durham) and Ada Faber  aged 29 (born 1862 in Wimbledon, Surrey). A younger brother and sister, Frank S and Ada L are recorded too.  Aged 14 in 1901, Henry appears to have been a boarder at a school in Harrogate and in 1911, aged 24, he is recorded as being a solicitor, living again with his parents Thomas and Ada and with more sisters and a brother.

The North Yorkshire history website records Henry as ‘Admitted Oct 1911.  Member of Faber, Fawcett & Faber, of Stockton-on-Tees.  Mobilised Aug 1914 as Capt., 5th Batt. Durham Light Infantry, promoted Major June 1916.  Once mentioned in Dispatches.  Served at Home and in Flanders and France.  Wounded May 24, 1915.’

I believe Henry married his first wife Ellen Holberton in Totnes, Devon in 1916. Their daughter Elizabeth was born in Knaresborough in 1917 and in 1939 her  occupation is shown as VAD, which I have learned stands for Voluntary Aid Detachment, a voluntary unit of civilians providing nursing care for military personnel in the United Kingdom and various other countries in the British Empire. Searching for Henry Grey Faber on the Find My past website, I found details of his service, medals and awards and his first world war record.  Ellen it seems also served in the army as a staff nurse.

Thomas Faber (Henry’s father)

Henry’s father was Thomas H Faber, born 1861, He can be found on the 1871 census at Middleton One Row, Middleton St George, Darlington, Durham, England, aged 10, with his parents Henry Grey Faber, aged 41 (born 1830 in Durham) and Elizabeth Faber, aged 38 (born 1833 in Durham). Also four brothers and two sisters – Eleanor J Faber, Elizabeth S Faber, Frank S Faber, Charles E Faber, Frederic William Faber and John G Faber. The Faber family are all recorded as visitors to Sarah Moore aged 75 and her daughter Mary A Moore aged 37.

On the 1891 census, Thomas, aged 30, is recorded as living with his wife Ada C Faber and his sons Henry G Faber and Frank S Faber. Thomas is recorded as a solicitor. On the 1901 census, Thomas and Ada can again be found.  They have five daughters named Ada, Helen, Lorna, Culeen and Olive. And in 1911 the family can be found at 100 High Street, Norton On Tees. Henry Grey Faber, aged 24, is again living with them and father and son are both recorded as solicitors.

This information is also confirmed in the documents of Hamilton Stanley Faber in which the family are referred to as ‘Branch 1 – The Stockton (Eeles) branch of the Grey Fabers.)

Henry Faber (Henry’s grandfather)

Henry’s grandfather was also called  Henry Grey Faber. He was the first son of Thomas Henry and Eleanor Faber and was baptised on 1 December 1829 in Durham.  This information is again confirmed in the documents of Hamilton Stanley Faber in which the family are referred to as ‘Branch 1 – The Stockton (Eeles) branch of the Grey Fabers and in which Eleanor is recorded as the daughter of John Grey Esq of Norton.

Henry can be found on the 1841 census, aged 11, at Shincliffe, St Oswald, Durham and Lanchester, Durham, England which appears to be a school. In 1851 aged 21 Henry can be found lodging in the household of George and Hannah Harrision at Church Street, Guisborough, Yorkshire & Yorkshire (North Riding), England and employed as a Solicitor’s Articled Clerk.  In 1871 he can be found aged 41 residing with the Moore family as described above.

The papers of Hamilton Stanley Faber advise the following about Henry.

Henry Grey Faber Esq was a solicitor and town clerk of Stockton. Eldest son of Thomas Henry Faber Esq of Stockton. Born at Stockton 30 November 1829. Baptised by the Rev: Jno: Cundell next day. Christened by the Rev: Geo: Stanley Faber at Stockton church 11 October 1830.

He was educated at Rugby and matriculated at University College Oxon 29 March 1848 at 18. He married at Holy Trinity Stockton-on-Tees 15 December 1859 Elizabeth Eeles daughter of John Eeles, Mayor of Stockton 1847/8/9 (by Elizabeth Colpitts. his wife. cousin of Colpitts Grainger Esq sometime MP for Durham) and grandfather of Jeremiah Eeles of Stockton-on-Tees.

Mr H G Faber did 5 February 1885 was was buried at the Stockton cemetery. He left issue:

1. Thomas Henry Faber of Norton

Solicitor born 18 September 1860, educated at Malvern College and married 1885 Ada Cotton daughter of Alfred Giles of Cosford, Surrey Esq. MP for Southampton and Jane Emily Coppard his wife.

Mr T H Faber had issue.

  • Henry Grey Faber born 1886.
  • Frank Stanley Faber born 1887/1888.
  • Ada Mary Faber born 1890.
  • Helen Margaret Faber born 1891.
  • Lorna Kathleen Fabert born 1894.
  • Aileen Coppard born 1895.
  • Olive Faber born 1899.

2. Frank Stanley Faber

Born 14 May 1864. Died unmarried in the USA of typhoid fever in 1890.

3. Charles Edward Faber

Egglescliffe Yam-on-Tees, solicitor partner with his brother in the firm of Faber Fawcetts and Faber of Stockton-on-Tees. Born 12 January 1855.

Origin of the names Faber and Grey

Information about the origin of the Faber and Grey surnames can be found on the website.

I am interested to learn more about the surnames Faber and Grey, as the name Grey appears to have been used as a middle name by many people with the surname Faber, both male and female, including Henry and Edward, largely in Stockton on Tees. However, I have also found the name connected to  Dorset, London, Middlesex and Essex and would very much like to know more about this.

Further information and sources

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