My Mother's Family,  based around Poulton-le-Fylde, near Blackpool, Lancashire  

My mother was Kathleen Danson and I have traced the family back six generations to the baptism of John Danson in 1736

My great grandmother was Maria Rawcliffe who married James Danson in 1877.  An old photograph of her at my grandfather's house was the starting point for my interest in family history.

The Brynings were sidelines to my Danson family (Jennet Danson married John Bryning in 1786) but they have a fascinating history that I was happy to delve into.

My great grandmother's sister was Alice Rawcliffe, who married John Mason.  I discovered by a  chance browsing online that they emigrated to New York c.1886 and I am keen to find out more about my American connections.

This is another sideline to my Danson family and came to light when a third cousin made contact with me through my blog - we share the same great great grandfather in Henry Danson and discovered lots of coincidences in our lives. Two generations of Oldhams were carters and coal merchants in Blackpool.

My Father's Family from the English Midlands

My father's family came from around Bilston, Wolverhampton in the West Midlands, and he grew up in Broseley, Shropshire near historic Ironbridge.

My Husband's Family of Leith (near Edinburgh), South Shields, Alnwick,  Scarborough and Portsmouth

The family has been traced back to 1759 and the marriage of Samuel Donaldson, merchant of Leith.  It was a family of mariners and seafaring occupations, with the name John Robert occurring down the generations.

John Robert Donaldson married Ivy White whose family again had mariner connections in Scarborough and South Shields in north east England, with the name Matthew Iley White recurring down the generations.

One such Matthew Iley White married Louisa Moffat whose background again was one of a mariner's family with London and South Shields connections.

Ivy White's mother was Alice Armitage whose father Aaron was a miner from Yorkshire.


Alice Armitage's step-father George Hibbert was also a miner,  from Derby, Yorkshire and then South Shields

One John Robert Donaldson married Sarah Jane Hawkyard (an unusual name) whose family owned a lodging house in the historic Northumberland town of Alnwick.