Thrybergh Ravenfield Dalton

South Yorkshire England

            Pronounced locally Thrybur  Old English Triberg

Webmaster John Doxey

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John Doxey's Memories pg 2


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James Ross pg 3

James is remembered and a Family Reunited

Dedicated to the memory of James Ross and J. H. Townend




25 St. Johns Road Eastwood View Rotherham.
John Ross a grandson of James Ross was still residing at the above address presumably with his family, and it is around this period James. H. Townend met John Ross

Anna Ross  58 Yorks Thrybergh Yorks Swinton Domestic Servant
Joseph Ross  52 Yorks Thrybergh Yorkshire Bramley Cattle Man On Farm
Kate Ross  41 Yorks Rotherham Yorkshire Bramley
George Ross  8 Yorks Bramley Yorkshire Bramley
Gertrude Ross  13 Yorks Bramley Yorkshire Bramley
Henry Ross  11 Yorks Bramley Yorkshire Bramley
Kate Ross  41 Yorks Rotherham Yorkshire Bramley 

1935 SELBY Yorkshire
George Ross had a visitor from Australia. His visitor was Walter Henry Ross but known to everyone as John Ross. Walter was a great grandson of James who whilst  in England decided to look up his relatives. Walter was a midshipman in the Navy, and the ship in which he served had once escorted the then Duke of Gloucester from Australia to New Zealand. A visit to Thrybergh was not undertaken at the time, but the arrival of his visitor made George think about one day paying a visit to Thrybergh to pay his respect and hopefully gain information about his Grandfather.


EARLY 1936 The Rectory of St. Leonard's Thrybergh.

Canon G.H.C. Bowen the Rector of Thrybergh was entertaining a friend one evening,  Councilor Mr. James. H. Townend J.P. C.C. Known to the locals as Jimmy he owned the cobblers shop on Whinney Hill, but most of the work was done by Sam Ash a little fella that smoked a clay pipe. Mr Townsend lived in Arundel Villa at the back of the shop. During the conversation the subject of James Ross came up. "Would you like to see some of the records James kept for the Parish" enquired the Canon, "Oh yes please that would be a privilege" replied James.


So for the first time James Townend gazed upon the records James Ross had so meticulously kept one hundred years previously. James  had possibly never seen such beautiful writing as the calligraphy he was now looking at. "He was actually buried near the  Rectory" the Canon informed him. "Would you like to see the grave?" "Yes indeed I would " replied James. The two friends made their way to the grave, the inscription was still legible and James Townend upon reading the date of death realized that the coming August would be the centenary of the death of James Ross. As he made his way home that night deep in thought, James. H. Townend came to a conclusion, a celebration should be held to honour the life of a man he came to know of all those years ago when he was a boy and was given a book to read.


In the months following the conversation in the Rectory James Townend enlisted the help of the Canon, also Mr F. Woolhouse of the Thrybergh and Dalton Cooperative Guild, and several local people in the arrangements for the centenary celebration. Local descendants of the poet were contacted and invited to the celebration plus several local dignitaries, and an invitation to the local Villagers was extended.


AUGUST 18TH 1936

The day was here. That afternoon Canon Bowen was preparing for the celebration when he received a visitor, the visitor introduced himself. "My name is George Ross and I live in Selby, I'm here to see if you can help me with some information about my Grandfather James Ross". The Canon stepped back in amazement, this was an unbelievable coincidence, the man had no idea regarding the celebration. Canon Bowen recovered from his surprise, informed George of the evenings preparations and invited his visitor to stay.

Early that evening the guests arrived. Mr. George Earnest Ross, Miss Gertrude Eva Ross  great Grandchildren of James. From nearby Bramley the Windle Family Mr. and Mrs V. Windle [ formally Miss E. Ross great granddaughter of James] and their son Geoffrey Windle. Miss Reward of Rotherham and Miss Gillam of Sheffield whose fathers were nephews of Rosalie Ross one of James Ross's daughters.

Councilor Ben Walls who presided the celebration, Mr and Mrs Crossley who were living in the "Cot o Content " which had become Thrybergh post office. Amongst the many villagers who attended that night was Joseph Tuke.
The evening was a great success, and several items were placed on display including a photo of James, and a framed silhouette of Anna provided by 89 year old Mrs. Whiston of Ravenfield.  The descendants of James paid a visit to the Cot o Content and the evening was drawn to its conclusion.

August 22nd 1936

The Rotherham Advertiser contained an article regarding the centenary celebration, presumably they had been notified by James Townend and sent a reporter to record the event. The article was well written and the Reporter made an obvious effort to obtain all the relevant facts. I suspect he was very much drawn to the work of James and had listened intently as the story was revealed. It is from that article that most of the information on this page was obtained.



The young boy walked in the cobblers shop which was at the bottom of Oldgate Lane, known locally as Whinney Hill. The boy was accompanied by his mother. He had been there a couple of times before and rather liked the old cobbler who seemed very polite and nice. The boy and his Mother were there to collect a pair of shoes that had been left there a few days previously. " How much is it Mr. Townend" enquired the boys Mother. " Just give me what you have" replied the cobbler as he had done a thousand times before. The boy's Mother paid, picked up the shoes  thanked Mr Townend, and they left the shop, as they were walking home from the shop Margaret Doxey remarked to her son John " He has always been a nice man"
I was not to remember Mr. James H. Townend again until the year 2002.

2002 Sydney Australia.

My thoughts had turned to Thrybergh the village I left in 1969, and I suppose the old saying  "You know you are getting old when you start looking back" would best describe why I was reminiscing. With memories in mind I decided to look on the internet and see what I could find regarding Thrybergh. To my disappointment there wasn't much at all about the place I grew up in, nor the neighbouring Villages of Ravenfield and Dalton.

 I had already built websites concerning genealogy and History, and thought why not build a site based on the three Villages, because there must be others like me who would find it of interest. So the site was started and gradually gained interest, but nothing prepared me for what followed, I was totally astounded just prior to Christmas, when I received the email below from a Lady here in Australia.


"Name: Heather Palmer
Country: Australia
Interest: Surname: Ross - in particular "James Ross"
Born approx 1766 - Died: 18 Aug 1836 married 1808 in Swinton to Anna Shaw.  In fact as far as I know he was married 3 times. - Anna was his second wife.
I am currently researching my family and I understand there was a James Ross who was the village school master for 25 years and was known as "Bard of Thrybergh" - I have a photocopy of I think is a newspaper clipping featuring a gathering of six descendants at the centenary of his death, he was also a poet, I have no dates of when this article was in the paper and the copy I have is not very clear.  If anyone has any details in relation to this person or his descendants I would appreciate it if they could contact me".


2003 Sydney Australia
Children of James
Earlier this year I was contacted by Paul and Elizabeth Ross of Australia who had discovered this website whilst browsing the web. Paul being a direct descendant of our Bard, decided to undertake his family research, and in a short period of time has produced an excellent story of the family as known so far. On some of the James Ross story I have a statement " Needs to be verified " Paul has verified some of what I found,  corrected faults in some of the family details found by me and also printed in the Rotherham Advertiser. 

He has also produced a very informative background of the Ross family in Australia which makes for some very interesting reading. You can visit the Ross Family website here.

As a point of interest Paul discovered his second cousin Heather Palmer [ to whom we all are grateful ] via this site


2006 Sydney Australia
The Ross Family Bible


If one page on this site gives me the most amazement then the story of James Ross is an outright winner. Just when I thought all was quiet regarding James I received the following email from DAVID PERRIN   .
This email by coincidence was received one day after I was contacted by Paul Ross who informs me that he has already gained a lot more information in the last twelve months on the descendants of James our poet, but has also been reunited with several lost relatives.
David writes
James Ross is my wife's, Jennifer Cavill Perrin nee Turner, 3rd great granduncle. You may also be interested to know that we have in our possession the Ross Family Bible. It consist of two volumes, published in 1683, in a sued like binding which, regrettably, is showing it age. On a page in the second volume is a record of the births of various Ross children, including James Ross. It appears to me that the tradition was instigated by the father of James Ross, James Ross snr., and his wife Sarah, who we believe to be Sarah Harrop. The inscriptions written in a fine hand are as follows;-
George the son of James and Sarah Ross was born Nov.. 23rd 1774
James the son of James and Sarah Ross was born May the 31st 1776
John the son of James and Sarah Ross was born Nov.. 19th 1778
Ann the daughter of James and Sarah Ross was born March the 28th 1780
Thos the son of James and Sarah Ross was born July the 31st 1782
Sarah the daughter of James and Sarah Ross was born March the 28th 1783
Charlotte the daughter of James and Sarah Ross was born February 28th 1785
Mary the daughter of James and Sarah Ross was born November.. 6th 1786
Amelia the daughter of James and Sarah Ross was born Novr... 15th 1788
Harriot the daughter of James and Sarah Ross was born June the 24th 1790
Henry the son of James and Sarah Ross was born June 24th 1792 (a birthday present for hs sister???)
Charles the son pf James and Sarah Ross was born July 21st 1794.
Beneath this is written -
James Ross snr. Baptised July 28th 1751 attested by R. Ogden Minister 1791
Sarah Ross snr. Born Nov. 30th 1753.
Until fairly recently I was unaware of the existence of these additions, it was whilst skimming through the volume that a came upon the text adjacent to the Gospel  according to St. Matthew. At first I could not understand why this particular place had been chosen to record the birth of the children. That is until I read the opening verse of the Gospel.
" 2. Abraham begat Isaac, and Isaac, begat Jacob, and Jacob begat Judas and his brethren. " At which point the appropriateness of the location became clear.
It is not clear how or more pertinently why! this Bible passed out of the hands of James Ross and his children. From what I have discovered James sister Harriot either took possession of the Bible or more likely inherited on the death of her parents.
Harriot married George Cavill of Wickersley in 1814, and they continued the tradition of entering family events in the Bible. The first name on the front page however is James Ross but father or son I do not know.
At some stage the Bible passed on from the Cavill's to the Turner's with the marriage of Charlotte Cavill to George Turner, also of Wickersley. in 1849. Their son was the Rev. George W. Turner a Primitive Methodist Minister. I believe it was he who penned various letters to the local newspapers regarding James Ross. However it is more likely his nephew also named George W. Turner who wrote concerning the existence of the Bible in his family possession. He was also married to a Cavill, Mary Helen the great grand niece of James Ross. George and Mary are my wife's grand parents.
I am sure there is more that I could tell you but I will leave it there for now.
Best regards
My gratitude on behalf of everyone to David for filling in another chapter in the story of James Ross and his family

April 2006
I received this email which could mean yet another link to the family of James, and hopefully can be verified in the near future.
My mother told me of my cousin's family search which resulted in leading her to Charles Henry Ross born 15/5/1855 in Selby Yorkshire, who was a brother to Alfred Ross the ventriloquist. If there is substance to this search, there may be a link between these two to James Ross. So Australia has another tree that settled in Warwick and Cairns Qld, to move to Brisbane and through my mum to Sydney and me to Melbourne with others to Canberra.
Regards Sandra Redwood 




A further member of the Ross family here in Australia, who originates from the Selby branch of the Ross family writes:


"Hi John

I found your email address on the Thrybergh website after finding the family history of Paul Ross. I've also been in contact with Heather Palmer.
I am Brad Ross (Bradley Edward Ross) the great, great, great grandson of James Ross, the Bard of Thrybergh.

Until recently I only knew my family ancestry on the Ross line back to Charles in Selby. Thanks to the phenomenal work of you and Paul Ross and Heather Palmer and others, I now know all the way back to Joshua Ross b. 1682 in Rotherham who was the great grandfather of James the Bard (his father James Snr, his grandfather Richard, and his great grandfather Joshua).

My father was Norman Svendsen Ross, his father was William Alfred Ross (Later called William Joseph Ross), his father was Charles Ross (married to Catherine Kelly), and his father was Charles Ross (married to Sarah Nappey or Nappy) from Selby, and his father was James Ross the Bard of Thrybergh (married to Anna Shaw).

I suspect the Ross line originally came from Scotland, and am interested to know if anyone has gone back before Joshua Ross, tracing James the Bard's ancestry back perhaps to Scottish roots, maybe the Ross or KinRoss area of Scotland.

I've had a read of your site some months ago, so forgive me for not remembering as much detail as I'd like. Such as are you living in Australia? I'm on the Gold Coast just south of Brisbane in Australia.

Anyhow thanks for your amazing legacy. I will definitely be going to Thrybergh and Selby in the next few years. Already I just love the place.

If you have any information or contacts that aren't on your website let me know and I'll continue on this amazing journey.

Thanks again.

Brad , Kim, Will and Jack Ross  
Brad Ross



I must confess I had never heard of James Ross, and I suppose there would not be anyone in Thrybergh who had, except for those closely associated with St. Leonards Church. I pondered for awhile and wondered why the work of James was never mentioned in the local Schools, why was THE  BARD OF THRYBERGH seemingly forgotten.
Heather then provided me with a copy of the newspaper article and also the pages from the Wild Warblings. So with information generously supplied by Heather, Paul Ross and David Perrin, a little local knowledge, a little research, and a little imagination the story of James  was put together. On these web pages hopefully we can create a renewed interest in the work of this man James Ross.

One thing is certain and that is Heather Palmer in sharing her family has given us all the wonderful story of James Ross, and in doing so reunited his descendents via this site. Our thanks to you Heather!

Copyright John Doxey


The Rotherham Advertiser.

Heather Palmer, Paul Ross , David Perrin, Sandra Redwood, Brad Ross,

Rotherham Records,


1861, 1881, 1891, 1901 Census Records.

Samuel J. Russell, Historical Notes of Wesleyan Methodism in Rotherham Circuit (1910), pp.8- 11ff.

Genuki Parish Records.


photo's courtesy of Jonathan Dabs and Danny and Ann Cassidy.


The poems of James Ross



Photo copyright Paul and Elizabeth Ross

Click photo to visit the Ross family site


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I have no affiliation  with any Trade Union, Political body, or organization regarding the information on this site. All information on this site is Factual and correct to the extent of my knowledge. There is no intent to cause offence to any individual. Should you spot an error please let me know  and that error will be corrected.


This site is the result of over 7 years research, and compilation, should you wish to use any of the content for publication of literature please contact me. The poetry and life of James Ross, the story of St. Leonard's Cross, and other items on this site were compiled, and first published on this site in their present context as a study of Thrybergh. If you use this site as a source, out of courtesy, please give credit where it is due as I have done on this site where appropriate.
All text and pages as formatted and presented on this site Copyright John Doxey and may not be reproduced under any circumstances without consent. Photos, and information Copyright to Primary Sources where applicable