Archive for May, 2015


Golden Wedding Celebrations

   Posted by: anne    in From the Newspapers

The following articles appeared in the Portsmouth Evening News relating to the Golden Wedding celbrations of two brothers. One thing I find interesting is the differing styles of the articles. While both articles give a detailed description of the careers of William and Cornelius, only the first spends much time on the more personal aspects such as the celebrations and gifts. The mention of William & Emily’s children does not include the four sons who had died young, making a total of nine children. On the other hand, the 12 children of Cornelius and Ellen do include the four children of theirs who had died by then. Also, William and Cornelius actually came from a family of seven sons and two daughters. Although three of their brothers and one of their sisters had died by this time, their other sister was still alive.

William Steggles and Emily Mountifield, 25 November 1924

Mr and Mrs W S Mountifield, who were born at Gosport and went to school there, are celebrating their golden wedding anniversary today at Wadden Park Avenue. Congratulations are being showered on the happy couple from all parts of Hampshire, as well as from London and elsewhere.
Fifty years ago Mr and Mrs Mountifield were married in Gosport, the bride being a Miss Emily Chapman. One of the guests at the celebrations in Croydon was a bridesmaid on that occasion.
Mr Mountifield comes of a family of four sons, the youngest of whom is Capt. Mountifield, of the racing yacht White Heather. After serving four years in the Royal Navy, mostly on the Admiralty yacht, Mr Mountifield joined the London Metropolitan police and rose to the rank of sub-divisional inspector. When he retired from the force on pension, he was appointed to the education department of Surrey County Council, where he served twenty years. During the war he was Administrative Officer of the London Special Constables. Now he is enjoying a well-earned rest after 53 years’ public service.
Mr and Mrs Mountifield are extremely popular in Croydon and in Surrey generally. As a mark of the appreciation in which they are held, the residents of Wadden have presented them with four pieces of gold plate, while family presents include two very valuable arm-chairs, beautifully upholstered, with the monogram “M” on the face.
Four sons and one daughter were born to Mr and Mrs Mountifield. All the sons saw service overseas in the war. The eldest, Capt. Charles Mountifield, is Clerk to the Merton and Morden Urban Council, and another son is a well-known Scotland Yard detective-sergeant.
There is much rejoicing over the golden wedding, and Mr and Mrs Mountifield are entertaining about 150 guests at Silverdale Hall, Wadden, privately, some travelling from Gosport and other parts of Hampshire to be present.
A huge golden wedding cake, consisting of two tiers, was specially prepared for the festivities, as a present from Mr and Mrs Mountifield’s children and grandchildren. It was a unique cake, the decorations including golden leaves and Cupids, and on top were a peal of bells, which could be chimed by pulling a golden cord.

Cornelius John and Eve Johanna Ruth Mountifield, 23 September 1931

Mr and Mrs C J Mountifield, of 85 High Street, Portsmouth, to-day celebrate their golden wedding, having been married at the Wesleyan Church, Gosport, on September 23, 1881. Mr and Mrs Mountifield have 12 children, 31 grandchildren, and five great grandchildren.
Mr Mountifield is a retired Sub-Divisional Inspector of the Metropolitan Police, which he joined at the age of 19, and from which he retired in 1902 after 25 years’ service. Joining the force he served seven years as a constable at Croydon. He was promoted to the rank of sergeant, and transferred to Greenwich, where he remained for three years. He was then promoted to Inspector, a rank he held for 15 years. During his career in the Force he was connected with nearly every class of criminal, many years of his service being spent in the rough districts of Bermondsey and Southwark. He was in charge of the police at the great dock and gas strikes, and was on duty at many notable public gatherings, including Trafalgar Square meetings and the jubilees of the late Queen Victoria. He was frequently commended by judges, Magistrates, and Police Commissioners for the able manner in which he performed his duties, one of the instances being in connection with the Muswell Hill Murder case in which he took a prominent part.
Upon his retirement, a public subscription realized £120, and his colleagues in the Force presented him with a gold watch and chain.
Mr Mountifield has spent many years in Portsmouth since his retirement, and is well-known as an umpire for the Navy, the United Services, and many of the leading cricket clubs during the summer, and during the winter he is a gatekeeper at Fratton Park. For the last 21 years he has been a keen worker for the Charity Organization Society, and still acts as their inquiry officer.