The Seven Branches
Gordon M Lickfold, July 2000
By the end of the 18th century there were 7 separate branches of the Lickfold family, descending from two main trunks in the 16th century. This paper traces the familyís roots in the 16th century, showing how the 7 main branches developed, and gives a synopsis of how each of these branches has spread out to the present day. [For a note on the possible origins and derivation of the name, go to Origins of the Name.]
The earliest reference to the surname that I have discovered so far is to the sale of a piece of land at (or near) Lickfold by a Walter de Lickefolde in 1297. Lickfold is a small village in the north-west of West Sussex, England, close to the Surrey border.
A Walto de Lykfold (presumably either the same Walter or perhaps his son) is recorded in the Lay Subsidy Returns (an early form of taxation) for 1332. He lived at the "Villat de Loddesworth" in the "Hundred of Esebourne". Todayís hamlet of Lickfold is in the parish of Lodsworth, so it is possible that Walter lived at Lickfold.
Very little is known of the familyís movements until the advent of parish registers (PRs) in the 16th century, but it is reasonable to conclude from the evidence so far uncovered that all family members alive today descend from Lickfolds who lived at or near Lickfold in the 13th and 14th centuries.
Sixteenth Century Registers
So far as I can ascertain, the only parishes at which Lickfolds were baptised in the 16th century were Lodsworth and Lurgashall in Sussex and Seale in Surrey. The keeping of parish registers in England started by order of Thomas Cromwell, vicar general to Henry VIII, in 1538. In practice there are relatively few parishes whose registers survive earlier than 1580, so we are fortunate that the surviving registers for Lodsworth date from 1557 and Lurgashall from 1559, while Sealeís go right back to 1538.
The earliest Lickfold entries at Lurgashall are the burial of Henry Lickfolde on 3rd February 1563, followed by the baptism of Edward Lickfolde two months later on 2nd April. At Lodsworth, the baptisms register for 1577 has this entry: "the vj daye of maye was christened Edward Lyckfold the sonn of John Lyckfold." This the first Lickfold entry at Lodsworth occurred 20 years after the registers started. It is interesting that right through to the nineteenth century many more Lickfolds were christened, married and buried at Lurgashall than at Lodsworth.
Seale is unusual in having a register dating from 1538. It is beautifully written (in marked contrast to many early seventeenth century PRs, for example Petworthís), but the first Lickfold entry does not occur until 1562. In that year Mary Lickfolde was baptised, followed by James Lickfolde, the son of James and Joan, in 1564, and John, the son of James and Alse Lickfolde in 1566.
The earliest Lickfold burial at Seale did not occur until 1580. This was Joan, daughter of James Lickfold. And the earliest marriage was Mary Lickfolde to Robert Michinall in 1583. This was probably the Mary who was baptised in 1562. The Seale burial register for 1610 includes this spartan entry: "February y 26th.James Lickfold". James made a Will, which confirms that all the early entries in the baptismal register were his children.
Bearing in mind that the first Lickfold entry in the Seale PRs was 24 years after their inception, we may conclude that James Lickfold moved there from somewhere else. As Lickfold families were well established at Lurgashall long before its registers started, this would seem his most likely derivation.
There is a crucially important clue to Jamesís derivation in his Will. He refers to "my friend John Lickfold of Lurgashall in the county of Sussex". John was probably a cousin. James would have been born before 1545; perhaps he moved to Seale shortly before the birth of Mary in 1562.
Seale is on the "Hog's Back" between Guildford and Farnham in Surrey. Seale is only about 15 miles from Lurgashall, but James started a clearly separate family line which apparently lost touch with the "Lickfolds of Lickfold" within one or two generations. In this way a completely separate family line came into being - making the second main trunk referred to earlier.
I believe that every person named Lickfold alive (anywhere in the world) today can be traced back to one of these two major branches of the family tree. In the remainder of this paper I will show how 6 of the 7 branches do descend from these two trunks.
Seven Distinct Branches
By the end of the 18th century the Lickfolds of Lurgashall had created 4 distinct family branches, while 2 distinct lines had evolved from the Lickfolds of Seale. The seventh main branch of the family is the Lickfolds of east London; I do not yet know from which trunk they descend .
Each of these 7 branches is described below. The classification T1, T2, etc is entirely arbitrary. I canít remember precisely how it evolved. It would have been in the mid 1970s when I was writing up notes on each branch, having met family members. So the fact that the Lickfolds of Southampton are classified T1 probably resulted from their being the first branch whose notes I wrote up. ["T" is an abbreviation for "Tree".]
The 7 main branches of the family, with a note of whether they descend from the Lickfolds of Lurgashall or the Lickfolds of Seale, are as follows:
T1 The Lickfolds of Southampton Lurgashall
T2 The Lickfolds of Hambledon Lurgashall
T3 The Lickfolds of Camberwell Seale
T4 The Lickfolds of Islington Seale
T5 The Lickfolds of Manchester Lurgashall
T7 The Lickfolds of East London
T8 The Lickfolds of North America Lurgashall
There is no significance in T6 being omitted. It existed years ago, but later became subsumed within T7.
T1 The Lickfolds of Southampton
This branch descends from Edward Lickfold (1781 - 1839), who was a nephew of William Lickfold (1736 - 95) of Tree 8. Edward was a farmer, first in the parish of Northchapel and then at Lythe Hill, a location half way between Haslemere and Chiddingfold. One of his sons, George Lickfold (1818 - 61), became a grocer in Haslemere. He had two sons, one being George Lickfold (1843 - 1927).
This George became a photographer and married a lady of French descent, Laura Degetas. They lived on the Isle of Wight for a time, then in Fareham, Hampshire, and afterwards in Croydon (south London). They had 4 sons and 4 daughters. Each was given at least 3 Christian names.
Here are the names of George and Lauraís children:
Moonetta Louisa Jane Lickfold, born at Headley, Hants in 1863. Known as Daisy.
George Archibald Augustus Lickfold, born at Ryde, Isle of Wight in 1865. Known as Gus.
Clementina Priscilla Florence Lickfold, born at Ryde, Isle of Wight in 1867. Known as Floe.
Hilda Blanche Bates Lickfold, born at Fareham, Hants in 1868. Known as Tots.
Sydney H Graham T Lickfold, born at Fareham, Hants in 1871.
Denney Raglan Saroney Rutland Lickfold, born at Southsea in 1872. Known as Rone.
Archibald Percival Clifton Lickfold, born at Croydon in 1875. Known as Arch.
Emma Eliza Lilian Lickfold, born at Croydon in 1879. Known as Lil.
The sonsí families lived mainly in the Southampton area, and two of Georgeís sons have Lickfold descendants alive today.
T2 The Lickfolds of Hambledon
This branch has Lickfolds alive today in Western Australia and in Canada, as well as in the UK.
A Thomas Lickfold died in 1791 at Hambledon. Hambledon is a delightful village in western Surrey, situated about 10 miles NNE from Lurgashall in Sussex. Thomas married at Hambledon on 21 May 1758, this being the first ever mention of a Lickfold in the Hambledon registers. He is described in the marriage register as a carpenter of Witley. Where he came from is a mystery, but he was possibly a son of Thomas and Elizabeth Lickfold of Tillington, born in 1733. This branch came from Lurgashall via Petworth.
Several generations of Thomasís descendants lived at Hambledon, and many of the men were carpenters. In the 20th century a significant branch developed in the Walton on Thames / Hersham area of Surrey (on the outskirts of London), and there is another major branch in Canada.
William Lickfold (born 1888) emigrated to Canada in 1909. He settled in Quebec province and became a golf professional. He was known as "Ten Putt Lickfold" - excellent on the fairways but less so on the greens! His son Leonard (born 1923) had 11 children. The five boys, born between 1948 and 1967, are now busy fathering more Lickfolds in various parts of Canada.
T3 The Lickfolds of Camberwell
This is my branch of the family.
James Lickfold who died in 1610 (see earlier) fathered several sons, whose descendants lived at Seale for most of the next 100 years. John Lickfold (1695 - 1762) was born at Seale but lived most of his life at Wrecclesham, then a small village just south of Farnham town. John had 3 sons. The oldest, Thomas, fathered Tree 4 (see below), and the next, William (1732 - 99) was responsible for Tree 3. Both lived at Frensham, a village about 5 miles south of Farnham.
Williamís son James, born in 1765, moved to Camberwell in south London, where he had 13 children. His son James Lickfold (1815 - 88) became a comedian and later made straw hats in St Pancras. His youngest son, Charles Lickfold, born 1844, became an actor who was well known on the West End stage and played before Queen Victoria. See The Lickfolds of Surrey.
Charles Warnerís older brother, James Ebenezer Lickfold (1840 - 1913), became a solicitor. No one knows why, just as no one knows why there were 3 generations of actors / comedians in the family. He was articled to Lewisís, who were Queen Victoriaís solicitors, and he later founded the family firm of solicitors, J E Lickfold & Sons, which continued for two generations after him. James Ebenezer was my great-grandfather.
T4 The Lickfolds of Islington
Thomas Lickfold (1728 - 1807), farmer of Frensham, was the older brother of William - see Tree 3 above. Thomasís son, Thomas Lickfold (1760 - 1824), another farmer, had 7 sons and 4 daughters born between 1791 and 1816. Three of the sons moved to London as young men, setting up as shopkeepers in Islington: William and Charles became cheesemongers and Henry was a greengrocer.
Two of their brothers stayed in Frensham but became agricultural labourers. What became of the family farm is not known. As time passed, several of the Islington brothersí nephews from rural Surrey joined them in the city, got married to London girls, and helped to found the Lickfold dynasty there.
Four small Lickfold families in this branch survive today. One is Peter and Tina Lickfold in South Africa. They have 3 daughters, so yet another Lickfold branch is destined to die out!
There is a street in Rowledge, south of Farnham, called Lickfolds Road. It is believed to be named after Lickfolds Dairy, which was probably run by Thomas Lickfold (1760 - 1824).
This Thomasís youngest son was John Lickfold (1812 - 68). He became the blacksmith at Ash in Surrey. Ash is near the village of Seale, and is now a suburb of Aldershot. Johnís great-grandson, Leslie Lickfold (1902 - 67), was an accomplished musician who travelled the world as a cathedral organist. His daughter Derrin is the last surviving Lickfold in this family.
T5 The Lickfolds of Manchester
William Lickfold, yeoman of Roundhurst in Lurgashall parish, married Phoebe Sanders at St Mary le Bone (London) in 1801. To their union were born five sons, three of whom became excise officers. Excise officers were employed by the Inland Revenue as a forerunner of todayís VAT (customs and excise) inspectors.
The youngest son was Edmund, who was born in 1819. He lived most of his life in rural Herefordshire in the border country between England and Wales, but sadly he has no Lickfold descendants alive today. However, Vince Matthews, a keen family historian living in Norfolk, is a descendant. Vince has an interesting ancestry of ornithologists.
Williamís oldest son was William Lickfold (1804 - 58). For many years I could not figure out who was the forebear of a group of Lickfold families that became established in the Manchester area in the second half of the 19th century and who live today in (mainly) Manchester, Cheshire and Lancashire. I had a hunch it might be this William, but I had precious little hard evidence.
Then one day in May 1989 I received a telephone call out of the blue from Peter Lickfold of Stockport (see Lickfolds of Manchester and Portugal by Peter Lickfold). He had recently retired from his job and was interested in tracing his family history. Armed with the information I gave him, Peter set about his quest - and within a year he had proved my hunch correct. It turned out that after completing his excise officer training William was posted to Scotland, where he met his wife and all his children were born.
Shortly before William died at the age of 54, the family moved to Manchester. No one knows why. William had 3 sons. The youngest, James Lickfold born in 1843, married into a family of textile mill owners and set up business in Portugal. Today he has Portuguese great-grandchildren named Lickfold living near Lisbon. If you search for Lickfold on AltaVista and specify "Language - Portuguese", youíll find them!
T7 The Lickfolds of East London
There is a large group of Lickfold families living today in the Romford / Brentwood / Thurrock / Upminster area of Essex, about 15 miles east from the East End of London. 100 - 150 years ago their forbears lived in the East End - at places like Limehouse, Shoreditch, Stepney and Bethnal Green. These were true cockney Lickfolds, living well within the sound of Bow bells.
Whereas many of the present day branches of the family, especially where family members are middle-class professionals producing "2.4 children" per family, are in serious danger of extinction - I sometimes refer to our surname as an "endangered species", this is certainly not the case with the Lickfolds who now live in Essex. In the 20 years from 1979 to 1998 they have produced 8 male children to carry on the name.
Several of these families descend from John Amos Lickfold, who was born in 1869 at Poplar. He was a son of George Lickfold, born circa 1840 at Limehouse, who was a coal porter. In 1972 I met James Lickfold, who was a porter at Billingsgate Fish Market. He related a family story that one of his ancestors (probably this George) could carry two hundredweight of coal up the "Jacobís Ladder", the steep steps leading down to the cellars of the terraced houses in the area that has now become part of London's Docklands business district.
Researching families in Victorian London is often something of a nightmare owing to the burgeoning population of the metropolis from the late 18th century. The earliest reference I know of to Lickfolds in east London is that John, a carpenter, and his wife Mary had 5 children baptised at St Matthew Bethnal Green between 1781 and 1791. It is possible that George (above) descends from one of their 3 sons.
Where did John come from? Where was he born, and when? Who were his parents? These are questions whose answers may never be known, such are the difficulties in tracing the ancestry of the thousands of people who migrated to London in the second half of the 18th century.
We can be fairly confident that this John Lickfold, or perhaps his father or grand-father, came from either Sussex or Surrey and may link in to one of the major Lickfold family trees - Tree 3 in Surrey or Tree 8 at Lurgashall. Equally, however, he may link back to one of the many smaller branches of the family that I have not discussed in this paper.
Throughout history, whilst most of the Lickfolds living in a particular area have died at or close to the place where they were born, there have always been a few in every generation who moved away. Many of these lines subsequently died out; others have spawned family members who are alive today.
T8 The Lickfolds of North America
Around 1850 two brothers emigrated to Ontario, Canada. They were millers, like their father in England, John Lickfold (1804 - 79) of Headley Mill in Hampshire. Johnís two oldest sons, Alfred (1827 - 1900) and John (1832 - 1907), were the two Lickfolds who emigrated to Ontario.
Since this website is hosted by Captain Fred Lickfold and his son Rich, who descend from Alfred, I am not writing about Alfredís and Johnís families here. See Lickfolds of North America. Rather, I will set down some information about the ancestry of their father, John, and the descendants of their 4 younger brothers who stayed in England: Edward (1836 - 70), James (1840 - 43), Walter (1843 - 1929) and Frederick (1846 - 65).
Ancestry of John Lickfold (1804 - 79)
John was the third of 4 sons of Edward Lickfold (1764 - 1848), farmer of Lurgashall, Sussex. This was a wealthy family of English yeomen. It is a fact that around the mid-1700s, about 75% of the English people were agricultural labourers - farm workers, working on the land. The middle classes were a tiny proportion of the total population, comprising especially shopkeepers, tradesmen, merchants - and the yeomen. The yeomen, of course, were the employers of most of the rest of the population.
So we are very fortunate to descend from the yeomen of England. From Edwardís birth in 1764, he being the oldest of 4 sons of William Lickfold (1736 - 95), we can trace the ancestry from the Lurgashall parish registers back through 3 generations of Edward Lickfolds. The first was born in 1686 (given that he would have been 50 when his son William was born, so their relationship cannot be regarded as proven), then Edward born 1656, and then Edward born in either 1627 or 1628.
According to the Lurgashall baptismal register, an Edward Lickfold was christened on 1st November 1627, being the son of John Lickfold, and then on 16th February 1628 Edward Lickfould the son of Thomas Lickfould was baptised. (Lickfould was a fairly common mis-spelling of Lickfold in the Lurgashall parish registers at this time.)
A John Lickfolde son of Edward Lickfold was baptised at Lurgashall in 1595, and a Thomas Lickfold son of (presumably the same) Edward Lickfold was baptised there in 1608. Without further evidence, proving "who begat whom" in this early period must be tentative, but we may assume that the grand-father of both Edwards born in 1627 and 1628 was the Edward born in 1563 (assuming he was the same Edward who fathered John and Thomas.)
This Edward Lickfold baptised on 2nd April 1563 happens also to be the first Lickfold entry in the Lurgashall baptisms register (Sixteenth Century Register), which started in 1559. How he descends from Walto de Lykfold who lived at Lickfold in 1332 (assuming that he does descend from this Walter) is a complete unknown.
It is possible that Edward Lickfold baptised at Lurgashall in 1563 was a cousin of my ancestor James Lickfold, who was probably born at Lurgashall, and died at Seale in 1610. But this is also conjecture at the present time.
Descendants of John Lickfold (1804 - 79)
Alfred and John Lickfold who emigrated to Ontario had 4 younger brothers, but only one of them produced any male heirs:
Edward (1836 - 70) was born at Headley and died there, unmarried, at the age of only 34.
James Frederick was born on 14 November 1840 and baptised on Christmas Day at Headley parish church. His death was tragic. It is very unusual for English clergy to write anything in the Parish Registers apart from the basic records concerning baptisms, marriages and burials. However, the rector of Headley in 1918 wrote the following in the margin of the Burial Register against the 8 May 1843 entry for James: "Drowned at Headley Mill. Hence the private baptism 4.5.43 of his brother Walter. So informed 1918 by this Walter."
Johnís sixth son, born in 1846, was Frederick James (the reversed names of his deceased older brother). Tragically, he died shortly after his 19th birthday, in 1865.
Walter Lickfold (1843 - 1929) [see newspaper article regarding the Passing of Walter] may well have been born just a few days before (or even a day or two after) his 2 year old brother James drowned in the mill pond. He had two sons. One, John Edward, had no children; the other, Alan Frederick Walter Lickfold, had two daughters: Holliss born in 1944 and Thea born in 1951.
So all the living male descendants of John (1804 - 79) are now in the USA.
Other branches of this family
There is a scattering of Lickfold families alive today in England who also descend from Tree 8. In the 19th century there were a large number of families, living mainly on the borders of West Sussex and western Surrey, who descend from William Lickfold (1736 - 95) and his brother John (1739 - 97).
Regrettably, however, most of the male lines in these families died out in the 20th century. Apart from the Lickfolds in the USA there are no other Lickfolds alive today from the descendants of William Lickfold (1736 - 95). So far as I know there are only four surviving male descendants of John (1739 - 97). These are: Robert, born in 1960, the only son of Digby Lickfold. Digby was a flight lieutenant in the Fleet Air Arm, the flying branch of the Royal Navy. Through his work he met Captain Fred Lickfold III of the United States Navy. How remarkable that they also are sixth cousins!
John born in 1945 and Mervyn born in 1950, sons of Reginald Lickfold, who was the town clerk at Weston-Super-Mare, a popular seaside town in Somerset, for many years.
Andrew Lickfold, born 1953 at Hitchin in Hertfordshire, son of Douglas Edward Lickfold.
The upshot of all this is that there are precious few male Lickfold survivors in the UK from the originally very large Tree 8 to carry on the family name. My conclusion is therefore: long live the Lickfolds in the USA!
Summary of the Seven Branches
By the early 17th century the main two trunks of the family tree were established:
The Lickfolds of the Lickfold / Lurgashall area in Sussex, and
The Lickfolds of the Seale and later Farnham area in Surrey
Tree 8 describes the early history of the Lickfolds of Lurgashall. Tree 2 possibly branches off Tree 8 in the early 18th century; Tree 1 branches off it through George Lickfold born in 1818; and Tree 5 branches off it sometime in the 19th century.
Tree 3 describes the Lickfolds of Surrey from circa 1550, and Tree 4 branches off it through Thomas Lickfold born in 1728.
As for Tree 7, the Lickfolds of east London - who can tell their origins?
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