Our connection to the Foster's is through Hannah Foster who married James Pocock, on 22 July 1812 at Hailsham Parish Church and was the grandmother of Charlotte Edith Veness nee Pocock.

I have done no more than trace her parentage and some possible detail about her brothers and sisters and their descendants, but as can be seen from below it is often uncertain whether I have made the correct connections. 

Thomas Foster and Elizabeth Dunk

Thomas Foster was born around 1749 and is understood to have married Elizabeth Dunk on 7 July 1777 at Hailsham. 

Thomas and Elizabeth appear to have had nine children, all baptised in Hailsham Parish Church.

  • Thomas Foster. Baptised 15 February 1778
  • John Foster. Baptised 6 March 1779 .
  • William Foster. Baptised 31 December 1780.
  • Henry Foster. Baptised 26 September 1784. Buried 16 April 1785 at Hailsham Parish Church.
  • Ann Foster. Baptised 19 October 1786.
  • Francis Foster. Baptised 21 August 1791.
  • James Foster. Baptised 31 December 1792.
  • Hannah Foster. Baptised 4 May 1794.
  • Jame Foster (daughter). Baptised 9 August 1795. Followed by burial of Jane on 21 November 1795 at Hailsham Parish Church.

Elizabeth Foster died in 1813 and was buried on 4 August 1813 at Hailsham. 

Thomas may have remarried Mary Hall, widow on 27 June 1815 at Hailsham Parish Church or this could possibly have been the second marriage of son Thomas (see below). The witnesses were John Smith and Susanna Terry.

Our line continues through Hannah Foster and her life is detailed below. 

Nothing more is known about Thomas and Elizabeth's sons John, Willliam, Henry 

A little is known about their remaining children. 

  • Thomas Foster and Mary King

Thomas Foster was baptised on 15 February 1778, at Hailsham Parish Church, son of Thomas and Elizabeth Foster.

He married Mary King on 12 July 1798 at Hailsham Parish Church.

Thomas and Mary had four children:

  • Nathan Foster. Born 11 August 1801 in Hailsham.
  • David Foster. Born 8 December 1803 in Herstmonceux.
  • Thomas Foster. Born 16 February 1806 in Hailsham.
  • Aaron Foster. Born 17 May 1818 at Hailsham

The three eldest children were baptised on 19 April 1807 at Hailsham Parish Church.

I can find no further trace of Thomas and Mary.

Thomas and Mary's son Nathan Foster is believed to have married Mary Ann Hassell on 3 April 1843 at St Pancras. Nathan was the son of Thomas Foster, deceased. Mary Ann was the daughter of Jesse Hassell. Both were of full age. Nathan was a widower. 

In 1851 Thomas and Mary Ann were living at Trafalgar Street, Brighton, where 49 year old Nathan was a fruiter and grocer. The census confirms that he had been born in Hailsham. 

Thomas and Mary's son Aaron Foster married Phillis Pearce in 1844 (Reg Gen March Qtr 1844 Hailsham 7 405). They had four children;

  • Levi Nathan Foster. Born 1845 in Amberstone. 
  • Mary Ann Foster. Born 1847 in Willingdon
  • James Aaron Foster. Born 1850 in Polegate
  • Emily A Foster. Born 1853 in Eastbourne.

In 1851 the family was living at Railway Cottages, Hailsham and Aaron was a porter to the rail road. In 1861 and 1871 they were at Railway Cottages, Eastbourne and Aaron was a railway guard, By 1871, their 26 year old son Levi was a railway fireman, their 24 year old daughter Mary was a governess, son James, aged 21 was a railway ticket collector and 18 year old Emily was a school mistress. Also at the address was their granddaughter Emily Foster, aged 1. Emily Louisa Foster had been born in 1870 (Reg Gen March Qtr 1870 Hailsham 2b 78). Phillis Foster died in 1877 aged 63 years old (Reg Gen Sept Qtr 1844 Brighton 2b 131). In 1881 Aaron remarried. His new bride was widow Jane Simmons (Reg Gen June Qtr 181 Brighton 2b 355). In 1891 the couple were living in Brighton at 12 Guildford Street, Aaron, aged 72, is described as "living on own means". Aaron Foster died in 1891 aged 73 years old (Reg Gen Dec Qtr 1891 Brighton 2b 139). In 1901, 82 year old Jane had fallen on hard times and was an inmate in Brighton workhouse . She died in 1908 aged 86 (Reg Gen June Qtr 1908 Lewes 2b 105).

In 1881 Aaron and Phillis's son Levi Nathan Foster, aged 35 was visiting at 18 Park Grove, Battersea. he is described as a railway engine driver.  In 1891 he was boarding with Sophie Hatt, a 64 year old widow at 18 Park Grove. he is now 45 and still a railway driver. In 1901 he is boarding with Thomas Purden, a 47 year old house painter and his family at 2 Taybridge Road, Battersea. By 1911 he had retired, but was still boarding, now with Francis William Gotch and his family at 26 Tregarvon Road, Clapham Common. Francis was also a railway engine driver. Levi Nathan Foster of 26 Tregarvon Road Northside, Clapham died on 20 July 1913. Probate was granted to James Aaron Foster, cab driver and Harry Foster, schoolmaster.   

Aaron and Phillis's daughter Mary Ann Foster married William Read Mockett in 1875 (Reg Gen March Qtr 1875 Eastbourne 2b 103). They had four children:

  • Margaret Agnes Mockett. Born 1873 in Eastbourne. 
  • Harry Alfred Mockett. Born 1878 in Eastbourne.
  • Edgar William Mockett. Born 1879 in Eastbourne.
  • Mathias Mockett. Born and died in 1808 in Eastbourne. 

In 1881 they were living at 92 Regency House, Eastbourne and 28 year old William was a smith. Also living with them was 11 year old Emily Louisa Foster, who it appears was Mary Ann's daughter born out of wedlock. In 1891 they were living at 122 Longley Road, Eastbourne. 38 year old William was a blacksmith, his wife Mary, aged 44 was a lodging house keeper. Their three children remained at home. In 1901 they were at 102 Longley Road, son Harry was a bricklayers labourer and Edgar was a solicitors clerk. Their son Harry subsequently enlisted in the 3334 Lab Coy. In 1915 at the time he joined he was a 38 year old plumber living at 13 Springfield Road, Eastbourne.

By 1891 Mary Ann's daughter Emily Foster had left home and was living at 41 Wood Street, Brighton. She was 21 years old and a needlewoman. She married George Ernest Thompson in 1898 (Reg Gen June Qtr 1898 Eastbourne 2b 176a). In 1901 they were living at Market Place, Haywards Heath, where George was employed as a cattle market porter. Their eldest son Leonard Ernest Thompson was 1 year old.. Their son Wilfred Edgar Thompson was 5 months old. It was believed that they had 6 sons and 1 daughter in all. Emily Louisa Thompson died in 1923. George Ernest Thompson died in 1947

William and Mary Ann's daughter, Margaret Agnes Mockett married Mortimer Harris in 1908 in Eastbourne. In 1911 they were living at 24 Channelview Road, Eastbourne where 38 year old Mortimer was a greengrocer. Mortimer Harris died in 1954. Margaret Agnes Harris of 24 Channelview Road, Eastbourne died on 27 March 1958 at Princess Alice Hospital, Eastbourne. Probate was granted to Ethel Mockett, widow, 

In 1911 William and Mary Ann's son Harry Alfred Mockett was a 33 year old builders plumber still living with his parents.  In 1915 he was living at 18 Springfield Road when Harry enlisted. Harry Alfred Mockett of Downside Hospital, Eastbourne died on 4 November 1956. Probate was granted to his widow Ethel Mockett.  

William and Mary Ann's son Edgar William Mockett married Ethel Roffey in 1904. In 1911 they were living at 88 Susans Road, Eastbourne where Edgar was a "Clerk to Limited Company". They had a daughter Doris Ethel Mockett who was born on 20 June 1904 and was 6 years old. On 26 February 1920 Edgar was initiated into United Grand Lodge of England Freemasons.  Edgar William Mockett of Devonshire Park Salon, Compton Street, Eastbourne died on 25 September 1956. Probate was granted to his widow Ethel. Ethel Mockett, widow, of 85 Whiteley Road, Eastbourne died on 19 April 1963. Probate was granted to Doris Ethel Dixson, married woman. 

William and Mary Ann Mockett's children were great grandchildren of Thomas Foster and Elizabeth Dunk as was Charlotte Edith Veness nee Pocock, making them second cousins. 

Back to Aaron and Phillis's son James Aaron Foster married Naomi Hudson in 1879 (Reg Gen Sept Qtr 1879 Steyning 2b 479). In 1881 they were living in New England Road, Brighton in the same house as Naomi's parents. James was a railway clerk. They had two children:

  • Harry Foster. Born 8 November 1880. Christened 20 February 1881 at Brighton.
  • Ada Foster. Born 1883 in Brighton.

In 1891 the family was at Wood Street, Brighton and James was a cab driver. In 1901 they were living at New England Road, Brighton. James, aged 52 was a self employed fly proprietor. Son Harry, aged 20 was a college student and 17 year Ada was a telegraphist. In 1911 they were still at New England Road, James was a 68 year old cabman. Both Harry and Ada were still at home. Harry, aged 30 was an assistant school master. Ada, aged 27 was a posting clerk and telephonist. Naomi Foster died in 1929. James Aaron Foster of 308 Ditchling Road, Brighton died on 10 June 1931. Probate was granted to Harry Foster, schoolmaster.  

in 1871 Aaron and Phillis's daughter Emily Foster was a 17 year old school mistress living with her parents at Railway Cottage, Eastbourne. nothing more is known about her. 

  • Ann Swail nee Foster

Ann Foster was baptised on 19 October 1786 at Hailsham Parish Church, daughter of Thomas and Elizabeth Foster.

On 8 August 1804 she married William Swail of Eastbourne at Hailsham Parish Church.

Nothing more is known about the couple. 

  • Francis Foster and Jemima Mepham

Francis Foster was baptised on 21 August 1791 at Hailsham Parish Church, son of Thomas and Elizabeth Foster.

On 9 May 1814 he married Jemima Mepham, at Hailsham Parish Church. The witnesses were James Foster and Jane Davey.

Nothing further is known.

  • James Foster and Susannah Brook/Ruth 

James Foster was baptised on 30 December 1792 at Hailsham Parish Church, son of Thomas and Elizabeth Foster.

On 25 November 1814 James Foster married Susannah Brook at Hailsham Parish Church. The witnesses were Francis Foster and William Page. Given the witnesses included one of his siblings I had assumed that this is the son of Thomas Foster and Elizabeth Dunk and the brother of Hannah Foster who married James Pocock.  

Other researchers suggest that James had four children, however I am not convinced this is correct :

  • Samuel Foster. Born 1817 in Hailsham
  • Caleb Foster. Born 1824 in Hailsham
  • Silas Foster. Born 1828 in Hailsham, but Silas Foster baptised in 1828 in Hailsham. was the son of James Foster and Ruth.  
  • Elizabeth Foster. Born 1833 in Hailsham, but Elizabeth Foster baptised 18 August 1832 was the daughter of James Foster and Ruth.    

In 1841 James, a 45 year old agricultural labourer was living in Hailsham with two children, Silas aged 12 and Elizabeth, aged 8. it is not clear where his wife was at the time.  

In 1851 James, a 60 year old agricultural labourer living with his wife "Ruth" at "The Town", Hailsham  with their grandchildren Ann Foster, aged 10 and Elizabeth Foster, aged 1. These appear to be Samuel's daughters (see below).  Is this "our" James?   

In 1861 James, a 65 year old labourer was living at Summers Heath, Hailsham with his 65 year old wife "Susan", "a monthly nurse", their grandaughter Susan, aged 12 and lodger Lucy Head, a 75 year old widow. Susan appears to be the daughter of their son Caleb. 

James Foster died in 1886.

It is possible that James and Susannah's son Samuel Foster had married Jane Knight in 1839 (Reg Gen May 1839 Hailsham 7 455). In 1841, Samuel and Jane, both aged 20 were living at Hailsham. The census confirms Samuel was born in Hailsham. They had a one year old daughter:

  • Ann Foster. Born 1840 

In 1851 Samuel was a 34 labourer living at 8 Cacklebury, Hailsham (next/with brother Caleb). He and his wife Jane, aged 33 had two sons    

  • Silas Foster. Born 1843 at Hailsham
  • Samuel Foster. Born 1858 at Hailsham

Their daughter Ann is not listed. Ann Foster, aged 10 and Elizabeth Foster, aged 1 were living with their grandparents, James Foster, aged 60 and Ruth Foster, aged 56. James is the wrong age to be "our" James, and it is also unclear what had happened to Susannah.  In 1861  Samuel and Jane, both aged 44 were living at Downash, Hailsham with the following children: 

  • Elizabeth Hannah Foster, aged 11. Born 1850 in Hailsham. Elizabeth married George Lavender on 25 December 1865 at Hailsham. They had three daughters. Other researchers have suggest that Elizabeth died on 8 May 1909 at George Street, Mount Rosskill, Auckland, but her husband George Lavender died in 1919 in Lewes. 
  • Stephen Frank Foster, aged  9. Born 1852 in Hailsham. Stephen is believed to have married Emily Alice Wenham on 23 August 1874 at St John the Evangalist at Walworth. They had four children. Emily Alice Foster died in 1887. Stephen is believed to have remarried in 1897.  
  • Mary Jane Foster, aged 3. Born 1858 in Hailsham. Mary married Alfred Kenyon on 25 December 1876 at Croydon. They had ten children. 
  • Ruth Naomi Foster, aged 2 months. Born 1861 in Hailsham. Ruth married George Brewer on 26 April 1886 at Sutton, Surrey. They had three children. Ruth died in 1960 in Hendon, Middlesex.

In 1871 Samuel and Jane were living  at Barrack Road Cottage, Sampsons Road, Hailsham. Only Stephen and Ruth were living at home. Samuel Foster died in 1873 in Hailsham. In 1881, Jane Foster was a 64 year old laundress living at Terminus Road, Hailsham. Jane Foster died in December 1890. As indicated above I do have concerns about whether all these entries relate to the same family and the correct family.  

James and Susannah's son Caleb Foster married Sophia Weller on 19 June 1849.  Caleb, a labourer "of full age" was the son of James Foster, labourer was only able to make his mark. Sophia Weller, a minor (i.e. under 21) was the daughter of William Weller, farmer.  

In 1851 they were living at 8 Cacklebury, Hailsham where 26 year old Caleb was a general labourer. In 1861 they were still at the same address and Caleb was described as an agricultural labourer. In 1871 they were living at 30 acres field, Tonbridge, where 47 year old Caleb was a carter. They had ten children:

  • Susan Foster. Born 1849 in Hendon
  • Caroline Foster. Born 1851 in Hailsham
  • Ellen Foster. Born 1853 in Middlesex
  • James Foster. Born 1856 in Hailsham. James may have died in 1892 in East Grinstead. 
  • Frederick Foster. Born 1857 in Hailsham. 
  • Thomas Foster. Born 1860 in Hailsham. 
  • Owen Foster. Born 1864 in Hailsham. Owen may have died in 1939 in Croydon. 
  • Charles Foster. Born 1866 in Brenchley. 
  • Louisa Foster. Born 1870 in Hadlow. 
  • Frank Foster. Born 1873 in Tonbridge 
  • Emily Foster. Born 1875 in Tonbridge. Emily married Charles Bradford on 25 June 1901 at Godstone. They had seven children, six girls and one boy. Charles died in 1916 leaving Emily with a young family to raise alone.  Emily died in 1931 in Sevenoaks.  

In 1881 the family were living at Lambert Farm Cottages, where 58 year old Caleb was a waggoner. Sons James, aged 25, Frederick, aged 23 and Thomas, aged 21 were farm labourers, Owen, aged 17 was a waggoners mate and Charles, aged 15 was a farm boy. the remaining children were scholars. In 1901 Caleb and Sophia were living at Tucker Plat, Lingfield, Caleb, aged 77 is described as a "normal agricultural labourer". Their sons Thomas, aged 41 and Frank, aged 28 were general labourers, Daughter Emily was also living at home, aged 25 she was a charwoman. A grandson Charles F Foster was 7 months old. Caleb Foster died on 2 June 1906 and was buried on 7 June 1906 at Lingfield. In 1911 Sophia Foster, a 79 year old widow was living at The Platt, Dormansland, East Grinstead.   

It is possible that in 1871 James and Susannah's son, Silas Foster (if indeed that's who he was) may have been a servant working for Daniel and Mary White at Rose Cottage, Bexhill. Nothing else is known with any certainty. 

It is possible that James and Susannah's daughter Elizabeth Foster (if indeed that's who she was) may have married David Vine in 1852 in Hailsham. They had at least three children, but because of the uncertainty over whether this is James and Susannah's daughter I have not recorded the detail here. 

Hannah Pocock nee Foster

Hannah Foster was baptised on 4 May 1794 at Hailsham Parish Church, the daughter of Thomas and Elizabeth Foster. The witnesses were William Jenner and Francis Foster.

Hannah married James Pocock, on 22 July 1812 at Hailsham Parish Church.

James and Hannah Pocock had eight children:

  • James Pocock. Baptised 31 October 1813 at Hailsham Parish Church. As a further son James was baptised in 1818 it seems likely that this son did not survive.
  • Thomas Pocock. Baptised 30 July 1815 at Hailsham Parish Church
  • William Pocock. Baptised 24 May 1817 at Westham Parish Church.
  • James Pocock. Baptised 13 September 1818 at Westham Parish Church.
  • Samuel Pocock. Baptised 24 June 1821 at Westham Parish Church.
  • Ruth Pocock. Baptised 8 June 1823 at Westham Parish Church.
  • Richard Pocock. Born 1826 in Westham.
  • Maria Pocock. Baptised 8 May 1832 at Hooe Parish Church. Buried 25 April 1832 (aged 3 weeks) at Hooe Parish Church.

Their lives together and that of their children are detailed in Appendix E

Click here to go to "Appendix G - Lewis"

Click here to go back to "Appendix E - Pocock"