The Leicestershire Tattersfields

There are seven of us. We are all grandchildren of Herbert Tattersfield (of the Heckmondwike branch) and Lilian Coatsworth who came from Lincolnshire. They had lived in Carlton, Nottingham before moving to Leicester. Herbert was the fifth child of Joseph Tattersfield and Betsy Pickering, and a grandson of George Tattersfield (see the next article).

I am Jane Elizabeth Weyer (nee Perkins and formerly Ellison). My mother was Winifred Tattersfield the oldest of Herbert and Lilian’s family. She always felt hard done-by as she would have liked to have been a teacher but the younger members of the family took priority. She married Arthur Goodall Perkins in 1939 just prior to the outbreak of World War II. Life was difficult at that time and I was born in September 1940 – a Battle of Britain Baby. No more children were born to them. After the austerity of the war years we settled into a comfortable life as my father had inherited his long-established family furniture business in Leicester and I felt I had a privileged up-bringing qualifying as a Primary Teacher in 1961. I married Michael Ellison an adventuring yachtsman in 1964 and after a divorce in 1983 married accountant Colin Weyer, until our divorce in 1996. Having lived in Berkshire during my marriages, I returned to live in Market Harborough, Leicestershire four years ago in order to be closer to my cousins.

Mary was the next member of Herbert and Lilian’s family who married “Jack” Cumming in 1936. They had three children: Patricia Mary (born 1938), John Andrew (born 1940) and Helen Margaret (born 1946). They lived in Humberstone, Leicester until each married and moved away. Patricia (Tricia) married Ivan Nicholls in 1959 and has moved many times including a time in France. Andrew qualified as a Doctor and after some time in the RAF stationed in the UK and in Bahrein, married an Australian nurse, Liz, in 1968 and settled in Australia where he is now. Helen married firstly to Bruce Lord and after a divorce married her boss the finance director, Basil Cole in 1991 with whom she is happily settled. Helen has just retired from her Secretary’s job.

Tricia always maintains that, like my mother, she couldn’t have the career training she would have liked as all the financial resources went into educating her brother Andrew and sending him to St. Mary’s Medical School in Paddington. She became a librarian and subsequently qualified as a teacher after her marriage.

Tricia and Ivan are living in Tixover in Rutland and maintain it is the longest they have been in one house. Andrew and Liz are in Toowomba, Queensland whilst Helen and Basil live in Thurnby on the outskirts of Leicester.

Kathleen was the third daughter of Lilian and Herbert. She married Reginald Hurst, the son of another Leicester business family in 1941 . They had an only child, Virginia (born1947) and lived on Fosse Road South, Leicester before moving out to Oadby on the outskirts of Leicester. Virginia married David Speed in 1969 and they now live in Wolverhampton. Virginia is a Nursery Head Teacher in Wolverhampton.

Edith the youngest surviving daughter of Herbert and Lilian worked in the Midland Bank, Granby Street, Leicester before her marriage to Frederick James in 1943. Fred served in the Army during the Second World War and following the Normandy Landings served in Europe until the end of the War. Upon demobilisation he took over his family business of Painting and Decorating which he ran until his retirement. Auntie Edith used to help him with accounts and administration. They had a son Peter Nicholas (born 1946) and Amanda Elizabeth (born 1958). Peter had a brief career in the Royal Navy and then went into Advertising and is now enjoying working as a Design Technician in the local School. Peter married Veronica Day, a personal assistant in an advertising agency in 1999. They now live in Kibworth Beauchamp, Leicestershire. Amanda (Mandy) is Deputy Head Teacher at a Primary School in Nottinghamshire and lives in Papplewick, Nottinghamshire.

Lilian and Herbert had two other children – Betty who died as a child from possibly diphtheria and Jack who lost his life during the Second World War whilst serving in the Fleet Air Arm. An Article about Jack’s life and short military career is in the section “Tattersfields in the Military” of this Website.

That’s the background to the “Leicestershire Cousins”. We are all close geographically and are very close as a Family. When the last Aunt died (Kathleen) she was the last of that generation so we all decided that we must keep in contact as we had only been seeing each other at FUNERALS and we are the next generation!

SO…….we now have Get-togethers which we call “Cousin’s Dos” using any excuse to celebrate and to enjoy each others’ company. We take it in turns to host each others’ birthday parties, Christmas, Easter, Bank Holidays, Bon Voyage parties, any special days like VE Day or just when we think it’s time we saw each other. Usually it’s a lunch which goes on until evening or it might be a supper. We’ve also been on the local Great Central Line steam train for lunch in the dining car. Sometimes, if it’s a special Birthday or Anniversary, we book a room for lunch at an hotel, restaurant or local pub. Someone always bakes a Birthday cake and of course, we sing “Happy Birthday”. We club together and buy a joint present for the Birthday Boy or Girl or the Anniversary couple.

Of course, we have good laughs, reminiscing and catching up on family news and sometimes playing silly games. When we are all together there are ten of us which is a goodly number of “Chatty Tatts” Yes, there is a lot of NOISE!!

It would be nice to think that the next generation will keep in touch after we have gone but with extended families and wider spread of residences due to work it may not be quite the same.

Jane Weyer January 13th 2007

Updated Account of THE LEICESTERSHIRE TATTERSFIELDS as at 29 September 2012

Following the very successful Tattersfield Gathering which John Tattersfield organized for the week of 16th September to 22nd September 2012 at Healds Hall Hotel in Liversedge, it was suggested that the account of the “Leicestershire Tattersfields” should be updated.

For us it has been a difficult 4 years as we have lost 2 cousins. Peter (James) died aged 62 on May 18th 2008 after a brave and courageous fight with a vicious form of cancer. Veronica nursed him throughout with devoted and loving care, but the disease and complications proved too strong. Peter was a kind, loving person with a gentle sense of humour, a devoted husband and loving brother. Patricia (Tricia to us – Nicholls nee Cumming) sadly lost her 4 year brave and determined fight with cancer on August 24th 2012 aged 73. Her brother Andrew (a doctor) returned to the UK from Australia in time to hold his sister’s hand as she died. Ivan has borne his recent loss very well, being fortified by his Faith and the support of his wide family and his sister-in-law Helen. Tricia was an inspiration to all who knew and loved her and lived life to the full.

Our ‘cousins’ dos’ were first instigated by Helen (Cole nee Cumming) in 1993 after we had all met up at the funeral of Kathleen Hurst (nee Tattersfield) and we all got on so well that after the first lunch we decided to make it a regular thing meeting up and celebrating all our birthdays together.

Of course, they won’t be the same without our two dear cousins as the banter between Tricia and Peter at the meal table always contained “Pass the salt, Peter” (as in salt petre), usually followed by “Pass the butter, Pat” which always brought raucous laughter. No doubt we shall quote them with fondness many times and raise a glass to their memories.


Helen ,Tricia’s, sister retired from her PA job at a book publisher 6 years ago and has devotedly looked after her husband, Basil, who was unfortunately diagnosed with Alzheimers Disease some years ago. Helen herself suffered a major heart attack in the summer so it has been a very difficult time for her.

Virginia (Speed) has retired from her post of Nursery Head at a school in Wolverhampton where she lives with her husband, David. They are both stalwarts of the local church and are very involved in the lives of their children and grandchildren.

Amanda (James – Mandy to us and much loved sister of Peter) still battles on as Deputy Head of a Primary School in Nottinghamshire. Despite this very demanding role she manages to fit in a busy social life, plays tennis and sings in the church choir as well as taking an active role in the church community.

Jane Weyer (nee Perkins)
September 29th 2012

Header Image: One of many images that are available of this most photogenic English county. A panorama view across the fields towards the old Victorian railway viaduct for the London and North Western Railway at John O'Gaunt valley, Leicestershire, UK in summer.   Nicola Pulham /