The Bower & Collier Family History

Research by Colin Bower

Peryer/Perrier Family

Visit to West Clandon 27 September 1987

Introduction - James Peryer

On 14 November 1869, my wife Chris' great grandparents:

James Peryer (age 33) (father Henry Peryer)
Martha Smith (age 20) (father Elisha Smith)

were married at the Parish Church of St Peter & St Paul at West Clandon in West Surrey (witnesses included John and Mary Smith).

James Peryer's wife Martha (Smith) Peryer outside the Butt and Ben Cottages at West Clandon

We knew that James Peryer was a labourer on the Onslow Estate at Clandon Park.

Mary Perrier

On 13 May 1894, James & Martha's daughter Mary (24) married Walter James Collier (31) at St Luke's Church in Hackney. Mary's surname was spelt PERRIER on the marriage certificate. Chris' father Leonard Stanley Collier told us of his memories (age approx 4 or 1913) of going by train from Enfield, Middlesex with his mother Mary Collier to see his grandmother Martha Peryer/Perrier (formerly Smith) at the Butt and Ben Cottages in West Clandon. He slept in a bed that was pulled down when you opened a cupboard - the sort of thing a small boy would remember!

West Clandon

In September 1987, I drove my wife, her father and our son Steve for a memorable visit to West Clandon where we went inside the grand house Clandon Park and the Parish Church nearby:

Clandon Park 1987

Kitchen at Clandon Park 1987

St Peter & St Paul Church, West Clandon

We found the Butt & Ben Cottages near the North entrance to the Estate:

Gateway to Butt & Ben Cottages

Chris' Dad Len Collier at the back of the Butt & Ben Cottages

Len Collier at the front of the Butt & Ben Cottages

I took a photograph of 3 generations of the family that followed after Mary (Perrier) Collier:

Chris' father Len Collier, Chris and our son Steve.

In the churchyard, we found a number of family gravestones:

James Peryer - Chris great grandfather b 1834/5 d 18.04.1907 (Age 72)

Len Collier & I looking at James' grave

Sarah Ellen (Perrier) Pike (James& Martha's daughter) b 1873/4 d 06.08.1925 (Age 51)

Gladys May Pike (daughter of Sarah Ellen Pike) b 1903/4 d 12.01.1929 (Age 25)

Sarah Ellen’s Grave Stone had the inscription:
“For he is our peace who hath made both one and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us.”

William John Smith b 1840/1 d 10.01.1891 (Age 50)
Esther Smith b 1839/40 d 04.01.1911 (Age 71)

Museum of the Queen’s Royal Surrey Regiment

Walter James Collier's sister Alice Collier married Edgar Charles Cocker in 1894 and emigrated to Canada to start what has proved to be a very large branch of the Collier Tree there.

During our visit to Clandon Park, we also visited the museum of the Queen's Rotal Surrey Regiment which is in the house:

Display of uniforms at the Museum

Edgar Charles Cocker saw service in the Regiment then the 4th V.B. East Surrey Regiment. At the request of descendants of Edgar Charles in Canada, we obtained a copy of an entry in Regimental records in 1890-6 when Edgar Charles was in a winning Tug-of-War team including the Royal Military Tournament (at that time the only occasion when a voluteer team beat an Army team)!

Colin Bower
31 August 2009

Visits to Places of Interest - Index

Made with CityDesk