Find Ancestors

Top tip - using the Genes Reunited community

Welcome to the Genes Reunited community boards!

  • The Genes Reunited community is made up of millions of people with similar interests. Discover your family history and make life long friends along the way.
  • You will find a close knit but welcoming group of keen genealogists all prepared to offer advice and help to new members.
  • And it's not all serious business. The boards are often a place to relax and be entertained by all kinds of subjects.
  • The Genes community will go out of their way to help you, so don’t be shy about asking for help.

Quick Search

Single word search

The British Newspaper Archive

British Newspaper Archive

Read about historical events at the time they were happening. Perhaps you'll discover your ancestor in their local newspaper?

Start searching


  • New posts
  • No new posts
  • Thread closed
  • Stickied, new posts
  • Stickied, no new posts

William Houghton / Mary B E Gale (Wynne)

ProfilePosted byOptionsPost Date


Cheryle Report 19 Feb 2013 02:58

I am trying to find info about my father's family.

His father, William Houghton was born abt 1911 at St Helens, Lancashire. I don't have anything definate about Wiliam's parents but I suspect they were Ralph Houghton and Esther Critchley. I do know that William had a brother Ralph and sister Sally (probably born Sarah). I've found a Ralph and Esther Houghton in the 1911 census and they had 2 sons, Ralph aged 2 and William 3 mo and I've also found a Sarah Houghton born 1914 and an Elizabeth Houghton born 1919. The mother's maiden name for both was Critchley. Elizabeth only lived 4 - 7 months.

William married Mary Beatrice Ethel Gale in 1932 at Poole, Dorset and they divorced some time between 1944 and 1951. Mary's surname at birth was actually Wynne but was changed after her mother remarried. She had a brother Tom Gale who I met when he & his wife Mabel visited Tasmania in about 1980.

Mary, along with my father and his brother & sister, came to Australia in 1951 and I know very little of the family members who remained in England, only what my father can recall. I believe that William was in the army and attained the rank of Major and that he remarried and died at Bournemouth, Hampshire about the late 1960s. I have yet to find a record of this marriage or his death.

I would like to find out more about William's family and also the name of his 2nd wife.


Susan Report 19 Feb 2013 03:13

For Ref........If this is him that is?.

1911 England Census
about William Houghton Name: William Houghton
Age in 1911: 3/12
Estimated Birth Year: abt 1911
Relation to Head: Son
Gender: Male
Birth Place: St Helens, Lancashire, England
Civil parish: St Helens
County/Island: Lancashire
Country: England
Street Address: 2 Waterdale Cresent Sutton St Helens
Registration district: Prescot
Registration District Number: 456
Sub-registration district: St Helens
ED, institution, or vessel: 48
Piece: 22802
Household Members: Name Age
Ralph Houghton 20
Esther Houghton 23
Ralph Houghton 2
William Houghton 3/12


Susan Report 19 Feb 2013 04:06

England & Wales, FreeBMD Marriage Index, 1837-1915
about Ralph Houghton Name: Ralph Houghton
Date of Registration: Jul-Aug-Sep 1908
Registration district: Prescot
Inferred County: Lancashire
Volume Number: 8b
Page Number: 1192

Married Esther chitchley


Barbara Report 19 Feb 2013 09:25

Marriages Mar 1945 (>99%)
Critchley Lillian Houghton
Houghton William Critchley


Cheryle Report 19 Feb 2013 09:29

I had come up with both of these records but, since I have so little definate info, I haven't found any confirmation that these are even the parents of the William I'm looking for. I'm hoping there may be someone out there who remembers the husband of Mary Beatrice Ethel Gale and can provide some clues.

The only definate info I have is that my grandfather's name was William Houghton, he had a brother Ralph and sister known as Sally. He was born at St Helens, Lancashire, married 1932 at Poole, Dorset and died at Bournemouth, Hampshire. The date of his death I've estimated from my own memory of my parents receipt of a letter advising of this. My father's name is Rodney William Houghton, he has a sister Janice and had a brother Robin Thomas.


Susan Report 19 Feb 2013 10:42

England & Wales, FreeBMD Birth Index, 1837-1915
about William Houghton Name: William Houghton
Date of Registration: Jan-Feb-Mar 1911
Registration district: Prescot
Inferred County: Lancashire
Volume: 8b
Page: 771

This looks like his birth ,the cert will give you his parents


Alemap Report 19 Feb 2013 11:21

There are quite a few William Houghton's born in the St Helen's area around 1911. If your William definitely married Miss Gale then it would be best to get the certificate for that marriage, then you would have the father's names. This will confirm you have the correct family. Without definite info, it is all speculation.

You can get the certificate from

Sorry to put a damper on things, but it is best to make sure you have the right family. :-D


Reggie Report 19 Feb 2013 11:56

Pam's advice is sound.

You really must get the marriage cert

The 1911 census certainly looks very promising, but you'd kick yourself if you relied on it, then found out that it wasn't correct.


Reggie Report 19 Feb 2013 12:01

Have you used the 'search all trees' function on here?

If not..............try it; you may find someone else is researching this family


Cheryle Report 19 Feb 2013 13:19

Have tried 'search all trees' and had a couple of replies. Still waiting on a couple more. Was hoping I might hear from a member named George who contacted my sister, Jennifer on this site in December 2008 and allowed her to view his tree. I think his tree may contain some of the info I'm after but no luck to date. Maybe he is no longer a member.

I appreciate your suggestion but if William's father's name is in fact Ralph that is all the marriage certificate would confirm, nothing more as there were several Ralph Houghtons born around the same time and more than one with a wife named Esther.


MarieCeleste Report 19 Feb 2013 13:23

Cheryle, the marriage certificate would also confirm occupations and possibly even an address. The witnesses names may also be helpful.

That information could certainly narrow down the possibilities but of course it's up to you if you want to take the advice given and take your tree back with accuracy.


Cheryle Report 19 Feb 2013 13:59

MarieCeleste, thanks for pointing out a couple of things that I hadn't thought of. Do you know the cost for a marriage certificate?


Potty Report 19 Feb 2013 14:08

Pam has given you above the site for orderingcerts - they cost £9.25 if you quote the full ref:

Marriages Dec 1932 (>99%)
Bishop Rose Gale Poole 5a 718
Gale Frederick C Bishop Poole 5a 718
Gale Mary B E Houghton Poole 5a 718
Houghton William Gale Poole 5a 718

I wonder if it was a brother and sister marrying at the same time?


Cheryle Report 19 Feb 2013 14:39

Know the details of Mary's parents so did a search for Frederick C. It appears unlikely that he is her brother.


Cheryle Report 19 Feb 2013 14:47

Just looked up currency conversion. £9.25 = AU$13.85


Cheryle Report 19 Feb 2013 23:53

Have ordered the marriage certificate but expect it will 2 or 3 weeks before I get it as I'm in Australia.

Fingers crossed it will provide some clues. :-)


MarieCeleste Report 20 Feb 2013 08:04

Cheryle, do comeback on this thread when the certificate arrives and let us know what it says. Hopefully we'll be able to help further.


Susan Report 20 Feb 2013 09:09


I live in OZ and I get my certs a bit quicker that three weeks..... one I ordered was delivered to me in 9days :-D

Good Luck

Sue :-)


Cheryle Report 20 Feb 2013 20:07

Hope mine is that quick, Sue. :-)

Will do MarieCeleste :-)