Thimbleby Moor

Finally, two hours after leaving Osmotherley, a view of distant scenery.  I had seen nothing except the forested Thimbleby Bank and clag — cloud or mist, however you want to call it.

With Osmotherley opening out before me, I was left with no doubt this was the Thimbleby Estate, for every path junction, every decision point, there was a sign declaring so. Visitors might be welcome, so long as they stick to the Public Rights of Way, and, somewhat reluctantly, Open Access land.

The Thimbleby Estate — an estate with a cloud hanging over it. During the later half of the 19th-century Thimbleby Lodge was the home of Robert Haynes.

Haynes had been born in Barbados in 1795, and although attending Glasgow University, spent most of his early life on the island1‘Obituary of Eminent Persons’ (1873) Illustrated London News, 01 Mar, 211, available: https://link-gale-com.ezproxy.is.ed.ac.uk/apps/doc/HN3100088883/GDCS?u=ed_itw&sid=bookmark-GDCS&xid=4275799d [accessed 09 Oct 2021].. He was descended from a family which had been “forced for its Royalty to emigrate to the West Indies in the time of Cromwell”2‘Obituary of Eminent Persons Recently Deceased’ (1851) Illustrated London News, 26 Apr, 329, available: https://link-gale-com.ezproxy.is.ed.ac.uk/apps/doc/HN3100027759/GDCS?u=ed_itw&sid=bookmark-GDCS&xid=03ee36f3 [accessed 09 Oct 2021].. His father, also Robert, was elected Speaker of the House of Assembly and “gained universal approbation for his wisdom and skill” in “two emergencies — the threatened French invasion of 1805, and the insurrection of the Negroes in 1816”3‘Obituary of Eminent Persons Recently Deceased’ (1851) Illustrated London News, 26 Apr, 329, available: https://link-gale-com.ezproxy.is.ed.ac.uk/apps/doc/HN3100027759/GDCS?u=ed_itw&sid=bookmark-GDCS&xid=03ee36f3 [accessed 09 Oct 2021].. Robert junior too was involved in island politics and administration, becoming “a magistrate and representative for the department of St. John, Barbadoes”4‘Obituary of Eminent Persons’ (1873) Illustrated London News, 01 Mar, 211, available: https://link-gale-com.ezproxy.is.ed.ac.uk/apps/doc/HN3100088883/GDCS?u=ed_itw&sid=bookmark-GDCS&xid=4275799d [accessed 09 Oct 2021]..

But it was not just island politics and government that the Haynes family had interests in. After his return to England in 1841, Robert junior was awarded £22,359 compensation (about £2,559,995 in today’s money5Bankofengland.co.uk. (2020). Inflation calculator. [online] Available at: https://www.bankofengland.co.uk/monetary-policy/inflation/inflation-calculator [Accessed 9 Oct. 2021].) for the enslaved people on his estates on Barbados6Ucl.ac.uk. (2021). Summary of Individual | Legacies of British Slavery. [online] Available at: https://www.ucl.ac.uk/lbs/person/view/6635 [Accessed 9 Oct. 2021].. This would include the 13 enslaved people he acquired from his marriage to Elizabeth Reece, who was his second wife and also born on the island7Ucl.ac.uk. (2021). Summary of Individual | Legacies of British Slavery. [online] Available at: https://www.ucl.ac.uk/lbs/person/view/2146640907 [Accessed 9 Oct. 2021]..

Sometime after his return to England in 1841, Robert junior acquired Thimbleby Lodge and moved his family, Elizabeth and his two daughters, to North Yorkshire. The assumption must be the estate was substantially brought using his compensation monies8Robert senior died in 1851 so there would have been most likely some inheritance left to his three sons..

Until his death in 1873, Robert Haynes played the role of the landed gentry. Even if it could be ascertained that his compensation money did not pay for his estate in Yorkshire, his wealth must have impacted the surrounding area. It would be an interesting field of research.

One legacy of his tenure used to be the Haynes Arms pub on the A19, but the last I heard was that it had closed its doors.

  • 1
    ‘Obituary of Eminent Persons’ (1873) Illustrated London News, 01 Mar, 211, available: https://link-gale-com.ezproxy.is.ed.ac.uk/apps/doc/HN3100088883/GDCS?u=ed_itw&sid=bookmark-GDCS&xid=4275799d [accessed 09 Oct 2021].
  • 2
    ‘Obituary of Eminent Persons Recently Deceased’ (1851) Illustrated London News, 26 Apr, 329, available: https://link-gale-com.ezproxy.is.ed.ac.uk/apps/doc/HN3100027759/GDCS?u=ed_itw&sid=bookmark-GDCS&xid=03ee36f3 [accessed 09 Oct 2021].
  • 3
    ‘Obituary of Eminent Persons Recently Deceased’ (1851) Illustrated London News, 26 Apr, 329, available: https://link-gale-com.ezproxy.is.ed.ac.uk/apps/doc/HN3100027759/GDCS?u=ed_itw&sid=bookmark-GDCS&xid=03ee36f3 [accessed 09 Oct 2021].
  • 4
    ‘Obituary of Eminent Persons’ (1873) Illustrated London News, 01 Mar, 211, available: https://link-gale-com.ezproxy.is.ed.ac.uk/apps/doc/HN3100088883/GDCS?u=ed_itw&sid=bookmark-GDCS&xid=4275799d [accessed 09 Oct 2021].
  • 5
    Bankofengland.co.uk. (2020). Inflation calculator. [online] Available at: https://www.bankofengland.co.uk/monetary-policy/inflation/inflation-calculator [Accessed 9 Oct. 2021].
  • 6
    Ucl.ac.uk. (2021). Summary of Individual | Legacies of British Slavery. [online] Available at: https://www.ucl.ac.uk/lbs/person/view/6635 [Accessed 9 Oct. 2021].
  • 7
    Ucl.ac.uk. (2021). Summary of Individual | Legacies of British Slavery. [online] Available at: https://www.ucl.ac.uk/lbs/person/view/2146640907 [Accessed 9 Oct. 2021].
  • 8
    Robert senior died in 1851 so there would have been most likely some inheritance left to his three sons.

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