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Cyril Robert Sowter - South Africa

ProfilePosted byOptionsPost Date


lilliesnan Report 30 Mar 2012 19:22

Hi. I am hoping somebody may be able to help me or point me in the right direction to find the information I am searching for.

I am looking for a marriage and death for Cyril Robert Sowter born 1905 in Burton on Trent. He was the first son of Robert Sowter and Mary Ann Bucknall. I have him on the 1911 census aged 6 and living in Goodman Street Burton with his parents

Cyril also known as Bob left UK to work in Rhodesia moving on to Cape Town and then Johannesburg. I don't have an exact date but I suspect he left 1920 - 1925 and there is a record of him making a visit to UK in 1932. He worked for the Railway.

I know he met and married his wife, Ethel whilst in Africa and had three daughters and 1 son. (Jill, Cynthia, Valerie and Peter)

Sadly his sister, Olive my grandmother and her siblings have passed away but I would love to be in touch with her extended family.

Would really appreciate any info relating to Cyril and his family in South Africa, but of course the icing on the cake would be able to make contact with my dads cousins.


:-) :-)


patchem Report 30 Mar 2012 19:31

Have you checked to see if anyone on genes has him or his family in their tree?


MarieCeleste Report 30 Mar 2012 19:47

Don't have access to any SA records, but this looks like him leaving England:

passenger transcript details

Date of departure: 4 August 1928
Port of departure: Southampton
Passenger destination port: Cape, South Africa
Passenger destination: Cape, South Africa

Date of Birth: 1905 (calculated from age)
Age: 23
Marital status:
Sex: Male
Occupation: Fireman

Official Number: 145175
Master's name: Capt W Morton Betts
Steamship Line: Union-Castle Mail S.S.Co.Ltd.
Where bound: South Africa
Square feet: 5980
Registered tonnage: 11222
Passengers on voyage: 579

His last address in England was 219 Goodman Street, Burton


MarieCeleste Report 30 Mar 2012 19:53

Looks like he may have been back for another visit in the 50s:

Passenger lists leaving UK 1890-1960

Date of departure: 7 February 1952
Port of departure: Southampton
Destination port: Cape Town
Destination country: South Africa

Date of Birth: 1905 (calculated from age)
Age: 47
Marital Status:
Sex: Male
Occupation: Railway War

Official Number: 14175
Master's name: Capt D Mackenzie
Steamship Line: Union-Castle-Line
Where bound: South Africa
Square feet:
Registered tonnage: 10.875
Passengers on voyage: 506

Address in England had been 241 Salisbury House.

This must have been the incoming trip for the above:

UK Incoming Passenger Lists, 1878-1960 about Cyril Sowter
Name: Cyril Sowter
Birth Date: abt 1904
Age: 47
Port of Departure: Durban, South Africa
Arrival Date: 14 Dec 1951
Port of Arrival: Southampton, England
Ports of Voyage: Durban [Port Elizabeth] [Cape Town]
Ship Name: Carnarvon Castle
Shipping Line: Union-Castle Mail Steamship Company Ltd
Official Number: 164625

He was a Railway Official and was going to be staying at Rhodesia Railways, 11 Old Jewry, London, EC2.


MarieCeleste Report 30 Mar 2012 20:01

Susan, have just found you already have an existing thread for him:

It would have been better if you'd added your request to that one so we have the full picture.


lilliesnan Report 30 Mar 2012 20:56

Many Thanks Marie for your help its certainly the same person.
At least I now have a date for him leaving UK. Could I ask where you found the passenger list.

Didn't request the info in my previous thread as my father, Cyril's nephew was trying to help with as much detail as he could remember but as we were unsure about some info I didn't want to confuse matters by giving incorrect details.
Sorry if I have caused any problems, although I have been a member for about 5 years have only just plucked up the courage to try the boards.

Patchem, have checked GR trees but not included in any.

Thank you both for taking the time to look for me.


MarieCeleste Report 30 Mar 2012 20:58

Susan, the outgoing shipping lists were from FindMyPast and the incoming from Ancestry.


lilliesnan Report 30 Mar 2012 21:13

Many Thanks, I dont have a subscription to FindMyPast only Ancestry. I will perhaps get some "pay as you go vouchers".
Sorry again for any confusion in not requesting this info initially.

Susan :-)


MarieCeleste Report 31 Mar 2012 10:54

Susan, I think you can do free searches on FMP - if you get any likely results then post them on here and someone will look them up for you.


lilliesnan Report 1 Apr 2012 10:56

Thanks MarieCeleste, Didn't realise you could do free searches on FMP.
Just had a good look at the site to check what records they have.
Have treated myself to a subscription as I have so many records I would like to look at.
Thanks again


lilliesnan Report 11 Nov 2012 14:21

Hi All......

Have previously posted before (this is a continuation of one thread) and also on - initially I didnt realise I had to continue on the one thread.................Hope you don't mind me posting again but am still struggling to find his marriage, death and the birth of his children in South Africa......

Briefly.........Cyril Robert Sowter was born in 1905 in Horninglow Burton on Trent, son of Robert Sowter and Mary Ann Bucknall...........he emigrated to Rhodesia, South Africa in 1928

I am interested in his life in South Africa.........He originally settled in Rhodesia, later moving to Cape Town and then Johannesburg...........After seeing some old family pictures I now know he married an ETHEL P LOBB..........

I would really appreciate anybody with access to SA records looking for his marriage to Ethel and their deaths........I am assuming that they both would be deceased by now..........Any information regarding the births of their 4 children, Valarie, Jill, Cynthia and Peter Sowter (all born in South Africa) would also be wonderful..........

Thank you so much.


patchem Report 11 Nov 2012 19:38

Add 'South Africa' to your title, so that people with knowledge of that country will be attracted and can help.


lilliesnan Report 11 Nov 2012 20:09

Thank you patchem..........I have done that.

Don't really hold out much hope but hoping somebody may be able to help.



Vicci Report 11 Nov 2012 20:24

there's a website that has south african records
it's free to search.

there is info for his buriel record, but need to subscribe.

ancestry24 has a facebook page, so it maybe worth posting your enquiry on there and maybe someone with a subscription could do a look up for you.