|Cecil, Barons Amherst of Hackney|
|Westbrook House, Upwey. Image: English Heritage|
William Amherst Tyssen-Amherst (1835-1909), 1st Baron Amherst of Hackney, served as Conservative MP for Norfolk seats from 1880-92 and was elevated to the peerage on his retirement. His passion, however, was for the collection of books and antiquities, and he built up a fine library, specialising in ecclesiastical history, especially of the Reformation and the Church of England, and in editions of the English Bible. He was also interested in the history of the spread of printing, and historic bookbindings. He bought steadily from the 1860s, and his library ultimately included seventeen Caxtons. A detailed catalogue of his collection was in preparation by Seymour De Ricci in 1906, when Charles Cheston, the solicitor entrusted with the administration of the Hackney estate, committed suicide. The cause proved to be that he had systematically embezzled estate and trust funds from Lord Amherst over many years to feed a gambling habit, and was on the point of discovery. To recover his position, Lord Amherst had urgently to realise assets, and major sales by Sothebys were organized in 1908 and 1909; the Caxtons were sold privately to John Pierpont Morgan for £24,000. Lord Amherst also took a pioneering interest in Egyptian antiquities, and in 1879-86 he had carried out a further remodelling of the house (to the designs of Norman Shaw) as part of which a single-storey museum was built to house his collections. In addition to the antiquities, the museum also housed old Gobelins and other tapestries, French and English furniture, Limoges enamels, and English majolica; all sold by Christies in 1908.
Lord Amherst did not long survive the dispersal of his collections, and died in 1909, leaving six daughters but no sons. By a special remainder in his peerage grant he was succeeded by his eldest daughter, Mary Rothes Margaret Tyssen-Amherst (1857-1919), who had married Lord William Cecil, a younger son of the Marquess of Exeter. She sold Didlington Hall in 1910 and the family moved back to Foulden Hall, which had recently been substantially rebuilt. Another daughter was Dame Alicia Margaret Tyssen-Amherst (1865-1941), later Lady Rockley, who inherited her father's academic interests but turned them in the direction of gardening. She produced a number of widely-read works on gardening, including one of the earliest histories of the subject, first issued in 1895.
Baroness Amherst died in 1919 and (her eldest son having been killed in the First World War) she was succeeded in the title and estates by her grandson, William Alexander Evering Cecil (1912-80), 3rd Baron Amherst of Hackney. Foulden Hall was sold in 1983, following his death. The family remain the lords of the manor of the three Hackney manors, although most of their estate there has now been sold off.
Shacklewell, Hackney, Middlesex
|Shacklewell, Hackney, from a print of 1801.|
The manor house at Shacklewell was probably first built in the early 16th century for Sir John Heron or his son Giles, who was the son-in-law of Sir Thomas More and who was executed for treason in 1540. The only records of its appearance, however, are two very similar prints published about 1800 and presumably based on an earlier drawing, which show it as refronted in the mid 17th century for the Rowe family. There is also a brief description from 1720, when it was called an ancient manor house and was said to be a brick building of three storeys with tall sash windows, a pair of Dutch gables and glass displaying the arms of the Rowes. It was assessed at 25 hearths for the Hearth Tax in 1665 and 1672, making it the largest mansion in Hackney. The illustration shows that the 17th century front was an elaborate piece of Artisan Mannerist brickwork, and that it had a contemporary two-storey porch, with a first-floor closet room supported on columns below.
After the death of Francis Tyssen in 1717 the house seems to have been let, and in 1743 a Shoreditch carpenter assigned the lease to a Clerkenwell brewer. By 1762 it had been demolished and twelve new houses had been built on the three acre site. Ancient gate piers still survived in 1824 but were later removed.
Descent: Sir John Heron (d. 1522); to son, Giles Heron (executed 1540); to Crown; granted 1543 to Sir Ralph Sadleir; restored by 1554 to Thomas Heron, who sold 1566 to Sir Thomas Rowe, kt. (d. 1570); to son, Sir Henry Rowe, kt. (d. 1612); to son, Sir Henry Rowe, kt. (d. 1661), who probably refronted the house; to grandson, Henry Rowe (d. 1670); to son, Henry Rowe, who sold 1685 to Francis Tyssen (c.1625-99); to son, Francis Tyssen (c.1653-1710); to son, Francis Tyssen (1690-1717); to son, Francis John Tyssen (1717-81) who let and later demolished the house.
Didlington Hall, Norfolk
The original 16th and 17th century house was extended several times and given a new two storey six bay north front shortly after 1800; the earlier origins were betrayed by some irregularity in the spacing of the windows and by some older features preserved in the interior, including a staircase moved to Foulden Hall in the 1950s. After the house was sold to William Tyssen-Amherst in 1853 he began a major remodelling and extension in a loosely Italianate style, which was completed by his son.
|Didlington Hall: the west front as remodelled in the 1850s|
|Didlington Hall: the west front as altered by Norman Shaw in 1879-86. Image: Matthew Beckett|
|Didlington Hall: the south front before the addition of the museum|
|Didlington Hall: south front as altered by Norman Shaw, 1879-86. Image: Matthew Beckett|
|Didlington Hall from the Ordnance Survey 6" map of 1884.|
The grounds were laid out with a lime avenue aligned on the west front of the house in 1689, and later landscaped in a Brownian manner. By the 1830s there were two substantial areas of water south of the hall, one of which may have been an adaptation of an earlier canal; a lower lake had been added by 1884. The park was expanded to the east in 1867 and the grounds later included a herbaceous border over 500 yards long, a yew maze, a rose garden, fernery, bamboo plantation and a rock garden. Although most of the planting has gone, the hard landscaping and buildings survive, including a boat house on the upper lake and the folly, known as the Castle Cave, which was built on a high mound between the two lakes. This comprises a two-storey castellated tower with an attached octagonal room used as a summer house. In the 1920s Col. Smith constructed a swimming pool with an elaborate classical pavilion, which also survives.
|Didlington Hall in the 1920s, from an old postcard.|
The present owners of the estate built a new neo-classical house on the site of the old hall in 2007, and have restored the stables and garden buildings.
|Didlington Hall: the new house on the site of the old. Image: Hugh Macmillan|
Descent: Col. Robert Wilson (1761-1838), 9th Baron Berners; to brother, Rev. Henry Wilson (1762-1851), 10th Baron Berners; sold 1846 to Lord William Powlett; sold 1853 to William George Tyssen Tyssen-Amherst (1801-55); to son, William Amherst Tyssen-Amherst (1835-1909), 1st Baron Amherst of Hackney; to daughter, Mary Rothes Margaret Tyssen-Amherst (1857-1919), 2nd Baroness Amherst of Hackney, wife of Col. Lord William Cecil; sold 1910 to Col. Herbert Francis Smith (d. c.1943)...sold 1950s to R.C.W. Ellison...
Foulden Hall, Norfolk
|Foulden Hall in 2011.|
The Holdich family had a large moated semi-timbered house here, built in the late 16th century, but of this only the brick gable-ends remain, with their external Elizabethan chimneys, rising to quadruple octagonal flues. The house between them was largely rebuilt in the 19th century with a porch and bay windows. Another 16th century chimneystack with octagonal flues was incorporated at the rear of the house. Inside there are fragments of the original timber-framed building, and one wind-braced roof. The late 16th century staircase with turned balusters and newels was moved here from Didlington Hall when it was demolished in about 1950.
Descent: Richard Holdich (fl. 1540s); to son, Miles Holdich (fl. 1564); to son, John Holdich; to Henry Holdich; to daughter Elizabeth, wife of Sir Isaac Sidley (d. c.1627); to son, Sir John Sidley (d. 1673), who sold to Robert Long; to son, Robert Long; to son, who sold to Lady Bennet (widow of Sir Levinus Bennet (1631-93))... Francis John Tyssen (1717-81); to daughter, Mary Tyssen (c.1743-1800), wife of Capt. John Amherst (1724-88); to daughter, Amelia Amherst (1775-1851), wife of William George Daniel (later Daniel-Tyssen) (1773-1838); to son, William George Tyssen Daniel-Tyssen (later Tyssen-Amherst) (1801-55); to son, William Amherst Tyssen-Amherst (1835-1909), 1st Baron Amherst of Hackney; to daughter, Mary Rothes Margaret Tyssen-Amherst (1857-1919), 2nd Baroness Amherst of Hackney, wife of Col. Lord William Cecil; to grandson, William Alexander Evering Cecil (1912-80), 3rd Baron Amherst of Hackney, who sold c.1971.
Tyssen-Amherst (later Cecil) family, Barons Amherst of Hackney
Daniel, John (1734-90). Son of Nicholas Daniel (1695-1752) and his wife Elizabeth Lovett (d. 1754), baptised 12 June 1734. He married, 23 October 1762, Dorcas, daughter of Thomas Achmuty of Brianstown (Longford), and had issue including:
(1) William George Daniel (later Daniel-Tyssen) (d. 1838).
He died 20 November 1790.
Daniel (later Daniel-Tyssen), William George (1773-1838). Only son of John Daniel (1734-90) and his wife Dorcas, daughter of Thomas Achmuty of Brianstown, born 23 April 1773. An officer in 91st Foot (Capt); Paymaster of Cavalry depot at Maidstone, 1797-1816. DL for Middlesex, 1822 and for Tower Hamlets, 1823. High Sheriff of Kent, 1825. He changed his name by royal licence, 14 March 1814. He married, 21 June 1794 at St Nicholas, Rochester (Kent), Amelia (1775-1851: see below), only surviving daughter and heiress of Capt. John Amherst RN, and had issue:
(1) Amelia Harriet Daniel-Tyssen (1795-1867), born 3 September and baptised at St Nicholas, Rochester, 23 September 1795; married, 22 June 1816 at Maidstone, Capt. Edward Connick, and had issue four sons and two daughters; died 23 October 1867; will proved 19 December 1867;
(2) Mary Ann Daniel-Tyssen (1796-1847), born 8 December 1796; married 9 January 1819 at Foulden (Norfolk), John Carter (1795-1847) of Northwold Lodge (Norfolk) and had issue five sons and five daughters; died 21 December and was buried at Northwold, 28 December 1847;
(3) Louisa Dorcas Daniel-Tyssen (b. & d. 1798), born 2 March and baptised 27 March 1798; died in infancy, and was buried at St Margaret, Rochester, 16 August 1798;
(4) Caroline Daniel-Tyssen (1799-1877), born 22 May and was baptised at Maidstone, 13 July 1799; married 12 August 1840, Christopher Alexander Hagerman (1792-1847) but had no issue; died 3 November 1877; will proved 9 February 1878;
(5) Charlotte Daniel-Tyssen (1800-72), born 12 July 1800; married 11 June 1823 at Maidstone, Courtney Stacey (1789-1853) of Sandling Place (Kent), banker and brewer, sont of Flint Stacey of Maidstone, brewer, and had issue two sons and three daughters; died 12 February 1872; will proved 1 March 1872;
(6) William George Tyssen Daniel-Tyssen (later Tyssen-Amherst) (1801-55) (q.v.);
(7) Capt. Charles Amherst Daniel-Tyssen (1804-82), of Northwold Lodge (Norfolk), born 6 June and baptised at Maidstone, 26 June 1804; died unmarried, 10 June 1882; will proved 24 November 1882;
(8) John Robert Daniel-Tyssen (1805-82), born 7 November 1805; solicitor; married, 28 May 1835 at Holy Trinity, Chelsea (Middx), Harriet Caroline Hopkinson (b. 1809) and had issue two sons and two daughters, died 11 June 1882 and was buried at Cheriton (Kent); will proved 3 August 1882;
(9) Francis Samuel Daniel-Tyssen (1813-75) of Castle House, Sandgate (Kent), born 13 March and was baptised at Maidstone, 15 March 1813; JP for Kent; married, 29 April 1843 at Putney (Surrey), Eliza Julia, daughter of Sir James Louis Knight-Bruce of Roehampton Priory, and had issue four sons and five daughters; died 3 September 1875 and was buried at Cheriton (Kent); will proved 16 November 1875;
(10) Thomas Auchmuty Daniel-Tyssen (b. & d. 1815), born, baptised and died, 19 December and was buried at East Farleigh (Kent), 22 December 1815.
He lived at Westbrook House, Upwey, Dorset.
He died 6 January 1838 and was buried at East Farleigh (Kent), 12/13 January 1838. His wife's date of death is unknown.
Tyssen, Francis (c.1653-1710). Son of Francis Tyssen (c.1625-1700) of Flushing in Holland, (who came to England and settled in London, and who bought the Shacklewell estate at Hackney in 1685) and his wife Dorothy Colent (d. 1703). He was aged 34 in 1687. Appointed agent in London for Albemarle County, Carolina (USA), 1680 and an Elder of the Dutch church in London, 1686. DL for Middlesex, 1702; High Sheriff of Huntingdonshire, 1707. He married 1st, 1678 (settlement 24 September), Susannah, daughter of Peter Matthews of Great Gobions (Essex; but recte Herts?), merchant, and 2nd, 30 December 1686 at Shacklewell chapel, Hackney, Mary (d. 1731), daughter of Thomas Western, and had issue*:
(1.1) Dorothy Tyssen (b. 1681), baptised 16 May 1681; died young;
(2.1) Ridley Tyssen (b. & d. 1687/8), baptised 5 February 1687/8; buried at Dutch church, Austin Friars, London, February 1687/8;
(2.2) Francis Tyssen (1690-1717) (q.v.);
(2.3) Dorothy Tyssen (b. & d. 1691), baptised 11 June 1691; died in infancy, December 1691;
(2.4) Elizabeth Tyssen (b. & d. 1693); baptised 30 March 1693; buried at Dutch church, Austin Friars, London, April 1693;
(2.5) John Tyssen (1695-1726), baptised 24 January 1694/5 at Austin Friars; married, 1716, Hester (1700-23), daughter of Caesar Child of Woodbury Hall, Barking (Essex) and had issue one son and one daughter; bankrupted as a result of speculation in the South Sea Bubble, 17 June 1726; buried at Hackney, 9 December 1726; will proved 3 September 1730;
(2.6) William Tyssen (1697-1720), baptised 26 May 1697 at Austin Friars; died unmarried and was buried at Hackney, 31 March 1720;
(2.7) Samuel Tyssen (1698-1748), baptised 26 January 1697/8; married, 28 April 1730 in St Paul's Cathedral, London, Sarah (d. 1778), daughter of Solomon Hougham and widow of John Eden Littell (d. 1727/8) and had issue four sons and four daughters; buried 4 January 1747/8; will proved 17 January 1747/8;
(2.8) Mary Tyssen (1699-1742), baptised 15 December 1699; married 1st, Samuel Gotte (d. 1723/4), eldest son of Peter Gotte of Grays Inn, Godmersham (Kent) and Stanmer (Essex); and 2nd, Sir Roger Meredith MP (d. 1738) of Leeds (Kent), but had no issue; buried at Leeds (Kent), 26 April 1742;
(2.9) Dorothy Tyssen (1701-49), baptised at Hackney, 20 October 1701; married, 1734, as his second wife, William Hugesson (1681-1753), eldest son of William Hugesson of Provenders (Kent), and had issue one son; buried at Lynsted (Kent), 3 June 1749.
He inherited the Shacklewell estate from his father in 1699 and purchased the three manors of Hackney (Middx) (Lordshold, Kingshold and Grumbolds) in 1697-99.
He was buried at Hackney, 6 September 1710; his will was proved 20 December 1710. His first wife died before 1686. His widow was buried at Hackney, 22 April 1731.
* Robinson's history of Hackney mentions another daughter, Martha Tyssen, baptised 19 February 1690/1; married William Cook of London, attorney and had issue two children; buried 27 July 1714. However, her dates appear to conflict with those of Francis and Dorothy above.
Tyssen, Francis (1690-1717). Son of Francis Tyssen (c.1653-1710) and his second wife, Mary Western, baptised at Hackney, 6 July 1690. He married, 18 November 1712 at Hackney, Rachel (1690-1755), youngest daughter of Richard Beauvoir of Balmes, Hackney and the island of Guernsey, and had issue:
(1) Francis Tyssen (1714-15), baptised 10 February 1713/4; died in infancy and was buried at Hackney, 5 December 1715;
(2) Mary Tyssen (1715-77), baptised 16 January 1714/5; married 1st, 16 August 1737, Powlett Wrighte (d. 1741) of Englefield House (Berks) and had issue one son; married 2nd, 18 July 1745, Richard Benyon (1698-1774); buried at Englefield, 27 September 1777;
(3) Francis Tyssen (b. & d. 1716), baptised 6 January 1715/6; died in infancy and was buried at Hackney, 27 November 1716;
(4) Francis John Tyssen (1717-81) (q.v.).
He inherited the three manors of Hackney from his father in 1710.
He was buried at St John, Hackney, 11 November 1717, after lying in state for two days at Goldsmiths Hall; the funeral was criticised in the Post Boy by the Deputy Earl Marshal as being improperly splendid for a mere gentleman, being conducted with heraldic pomp proper only to a person of much higher degree. His will was proved 1 November 1717. His widow was buried at Hackney, 22 February 1755.
Tyssen, Francis John (1717-81). Posthumous son of Francis Tyssen and his wife Rachel Beauvoir, baptised at Hackney, 14 or 16 November 1717. JP for Middlesex; DL of Tower Hamlets, 1744. He was unmarried but had several illegitimate children by different mistresses. By Mary (d. 1756), daughter of Joseph Dickenson of Jamaica, he had issue:
(X1.1) Mary Tyssen (c.1743-1800) (q.v.);
(X2.2) Samuel Tyssen (c.1756-1800) of Felix Hall (Essex) and later Narborough Hall (Norfolk); married 1st, Sarah Bodycoat (1756-90) and had issue one son and three daughters; married 2nd, Martha Watts (c.1774-1838); buried at Narborough (Norfolk), 12 September 1800.
By Martha Faulstone (d. 1771) he had issue:
(X3.1) Amelia Tyssen (fl. 1813); married Richard Harris Lovelace (fl. 1813), and had issue;
(X3.2) Harriet Tyssen (fl. 1813); married Martin Whish (fl. 1813).
By Eleanor Deane (c.1769-1810) he had issue:
(X4.1) Josiah Deane (later Tyssen) (b. 1767), baptised at St. Marylebone (Middx), 16 July 1767; assumed the name and arms of Tyssen, 1788; died unmarried before 1840;
(X4.2) Frances Deane alias Tyssen (1769-1843), born 11 April 1769; married 2 November 1787 at Gretna Green, 24 December 1787 at Teddington (Middx) and 4 March 1788* at St Mary, Marylebone (Middx), Otho Hamilton Amiel (1763-1840)** and had issue two sons and four daughters; died 13 January 1843.
He inherited the three manors of Hackney from his father and bought other property including Foulden Hall (Norfolk) and Westbrook House, Upwey (Dorset). At his death his property was divided among some of his surviving illegitimate children. His eldest child, Mary Tyssen, received Foulden Hall (Norfolk). The manor of Hackney passed in turn to two of his sons and then in 1814 also to Mary.
He died 9 September, and was buried at Hackney on 15 September 1781; his will was proved 15 September 1781. Elizabeth Preston was buried 14 October 1796. Eleanor Deane was buried 13 March 1810.
* The couple married three times as her trustees refused to accept the validity of the first two marriages: see the explanatory comment below.
** For more on Otho Hamilton Amiel's life and family, see the public comments on this blog post below.
Tyssen (later Amherst), Mary (c.1743-1800). Illegitimate daughter of Francis John Tyssen JP (c.1717-81) of Hackney (Middx), born about 1743. She married 25 September 1766 at St Olave, Old Jewry, London, as his second wife, Capt. John Amherst (1724-88), and had issue:
(1) Mary Amherst (1767-74), baptised 3 November 1767; died young and was buried 30 September 1774;
(2) Amelia Amherst (1775-1851) (q.v.).
She inherited Foulden Hall from her father in 1781 and the manor of Hackney on the death of her half-brother in 1814.
She died 25 March and was buried at East Farleigh (Kent), 29 March 1800. Her husband died 22 January 1788 and was buried at East Farleigh.
Amherst (later Daniel, then Daniel-Tyssen), Amelia (1775-1851). Only surviving daughter of Capt. John Amherst (1724-88) and his second wife, Mary, illegitimate daughter of Francis John Tyssen of Hackney (Middx), baptised 1 May 1775 at St Nicholas, Rochester (Kent). She married, 21 June 1794 at St Nicholas, Rochester, William George Daniel (later Daniel-Tyssen): see above.
She inherited Foulden Hall from her mother in 1800 and the family property at Hackney (Middx) from her uncle Francis Tyssen in 1813.
She died 6 August and was buried at East Farleigh (Kent), 13 August 1851. Her will was proved 2 September 1851.
Daniel-Tyssen (later Tyssen-Amherst), William George Tyssen (1801-55). Eldest son of William George Daniel-Tyssen (1773-1838) and his wife Amelia, daughter of Capt. John Amherst of Rochester (Kent), born 18 December 1801 and was baptised at Maidstone, 16 January 1802. High Sheriff of Norfolk, 1843. He changed his name by royal licence from Daniel-Tyssen to Tyssen-Amherst, 6 August 1852. He married, 13 April 1834 at St Mary, Bryanston Square, London, Mary (1806-54), eldest daughter of Andrew Fountaine of Narford Hall (Norfolk), and had issue:
(1) William Amherst Tyssen-Amherst (1835-1909), 1st Baron Amherst of Hackney (q.v.);
(2) Amelia Tyssen-Amherst (1837-90), born 27 January 1837 and was baptised at Foulden; died unmarried, 9 August 1890 and was buried at Didlington, 15 August 1890; will proved 16 September 1890 (estate £25,399);
(3) Florence Mary Tyssen-Amherst (1839-1927), born 13 February 1839; married, 19 October 1860 at Didlington, Rev. Charles Villiers (d. 1893) of Lee (Kent) and had issue six sons and three daughters; died 7 October 1927; will proved 29 November 1927 (estate £505);
(4) Francis Tyssen-Amherst (1842-81), born 27 September 1842; educated at Christ Church, Oxford (admitted 1861; BA 1865) and Inner Temple (called to bar, 1867); farmer at Foulden Plantation, Mackay, Queensland, Australia; member of the Legislative Assembly of Queensland; died on board ship returning to England, 3 January 1881 and was buried at sea; will proved 16 April 1881 (estate in England under £200).
He inherited the property of his mother's family at Hackney (Middx) and Foulden (Norfolk). In 1853 he purchased Didlington Hall and began a major remodelling and extension of the house.
He died 30 December 1855 and was buried at Didlington; his will was proved 9 May 1856. His wife died 9 February 1854 and was buried at Didlington.
Tyssen-Amherst, William Amherst (1835-1909), 1st Baron Amherst of Hackney. Elder son of William George Tyssen Tyssen-Amherst (1801-55) and his wife Mary, daughter of Andrew Fountaine of Narford Hall (Norfolk), born 25 April 1835 and was baptised the following day. Educated at Eton, Christ Church, Oxford (matriculated 1853) and Inner Temple (admitted 1857); High Sheriff of Norfolk, 1866; JP for Westminster. Changed his name from Tyssen-Amherst to Tyssen-Amherst by royal licence, 16 August 1877. Conservative MP for West Norfolk, 1880-85 and South-West Norfolk, 1885-92; created Baron Amherst of Hackney, 26 August 1892, with special remainder to his eldest daughter; Knight of St John of Jerusalem. He was a passionate collector of books, manuscripts and Egyptian antiquities, and bought steadily from the 1860s onwards; he was translator of The discovery of the Solomon Islands, 1901. Lord Amherst's fortunes took a serious turn in 1906, when it was discovered that the family's late solicitor and estate agent, Henry Cheston, had embezzled £250,000 of his money, and £70,000 of which he was a trustee. Lord Amherst's collection of antiquities had to be sold, as did his library, to meet his liabilities and he died shortly afterwards. He married, 4 June 1856 at Hunmanby (Yorks), Margaret Susan (1835-1919), only child of Adm. Robert Mitford of Hunmanby Hall (Yorks) and Mitford Castle (Northbld), and had issue:
(1) Mary Rothes Margaret Tyssen-Amherst (1857-1919), 2nd Baroness Amherst of Hackney (q.v.);
(2) Hon. Sybil Margaret Tyssen-Amherst (1858-1926), born 21 September 1858; Lady of Justice of St John of Jerusalem; died unmarried, 21 June 1926; will proved 2 February 1927 (estate £12,417);
(3) Hon. Florence Margaret Tyssen-Amherst (1860-1946), born 26 January 1860; Lady of Justice of St John of Jerusalem; died unmarried, 9 August 1946;
(4) Hon. Margaret Mitford Tyssen-Amherst (1863-1923), born 12 August 1863; Lady of Justice of St John of Jerusalem; died unmarried, 19 December 1923; will proved 14 April 1924 (estate £6,518);
(5) Hon. Dame Alicia Margaret Tyssen-Amherst DBE (1865-1941), born 30 July and baptised 3 September 1865; Vice-Chairman of the Society for Oversea Settlement of British Women; Dame Grand Cross of the Order of St. John of Jerusalem; author of A History of Gardening in England, 1895; London Parks and Gardens, 1907 and Wild Flowers of the Great Dominions of the British empire, 1935; married, 16 February 1898 at St George's, Hanover Square, London, Lord Evelyn Cecil (1865-1941), 1st Baron Rockley and had issue one son and two daughters; died 14 September 1941; her will was proved 18 November 1941 (estate £9,630);
(6) Hon. Geraldine Margaret Tyssen-Amherst (1867-1956), born 2 May and baptised 9 June 1867; married, 30 April 1890 at St Margaret's, Westminster, London, Capt. Malcolm Drummond (1856-1924) of Megginch Castle (Perths) and had issue; died 24 August 1956;
(7) Beatrice Margaret Tyssen-Amherst (1869-81), born 27 September and baptised 7 November 1869; died young at Cannes (France), 20 November 1881 and was buried at Didlington, 30 November 1881.
He inherited Didlington Hall and Foulden Hall in Norfolk and the manors of Hackney (Middx) from his father in 1855; he transferred his Hackney property to his daughter in 1906.
He died 16 January 1909 and was succeeded in his title and estates by his eldest daughter; he was buried at Didlington, 20 January 1909 and his will was proved 10 February 1909 (estate £67,457). His widow died 2 November 1919; her will was proved 14 January 1920 (estate £6,215).
|2nd Baroness Amherst of Hackney|
(1) Hon. William Amherst Cecil MC (1886-1914) (q.v.);
(2) Hon. Thomas James Amherst Cecil (1887-1955), born 9 November 1887; educated at Eton; Captain in 10th Battn., Kings Royal Rifle Corps in WW1 (wounded); married, 29 July 1912, Vera Agnes, younger daughter of Hedworth Trelawny Barclay and had issue one son; died 4 October 1955; will proved 9 December 1955 (estate £12,357);
(3) Hon. John Francis Amherst Cecil (1890-1954) of Biltmore House, North Carolina (USA), born 30 June 1890; educated at Eton and New College, Oxford; First Secretary in Diplomatic Service; married, 29 April 1924 (div. 1934), Cornelia Stuyvesant (d. 1976), only daughter of George Washington Vanderbilt and had issue two sons; died 22 October 1954; will proved 23 September 1955 (estate in England, £6,566);
(4) Hon. Henry Mitford Amherst Cecil (1893-1962), born 9 March and baptised 22 March 1893; Commander in Royal Navy; temporary Squadron Leader in RAF, 1934-36; served WW1 and WW2; member of House of Laity of Church Assembly, 1953-55 and 1960-62; Chevalier of the Order of the Redeemer in Greece; Officer of the Order of St John of Jerusalem; married, 27 January 1923, Hon. Yvonne Cornwallis (d. 1983), third daughter of 1st Baron Cornwallis and had issue one son and two daughters; died 6 January 1962; will proved 5 March 1962 (estate £5,087).
She received the Hackney estate from her father in 1906 and inherited Didlington Hall and Foulden Hall in Norfolk in 1909, but sold Didlington Hall in 1910.
She died 21 December 1919, when her title and estates passed to her grandson, William Alexander Evering Cecil (1912-80); her will was proved 1 May 1920 (estate £36,239). Her husband died 16 April 1943; his will was proved 9 August 1943 (estate £2,411).
Cecil, Hon. William Amherst (1886-1914). Eldest son of Col. Lord William Cecil (1854-1943) and his wife Mary Rothes Margaret, daughter of William Amherst Tyssen-Amherst, 1st Baron Amherst of Hackney, born 30 June 1886. Joined the Grenadier Guards, 1904 (Lt., 1908; Capt., 1914; MC 1914); married, 14 April 1910, Evelyn Gladys (c.1885-1947), only child of Henry Charles Baggallay of Heatherhurst Grange, Frimley (Surrey) and had issue:
(1) William Alexander Evering Cecil (1912-80), 3rd Baron Amherst of Hackney (q.v.);
(2) Hon. Henry Kerr Auchmuty Cecil (1914-42); educated at Eton; served in WW2 as Lieutenant in Parachute Regiment; married, 15 December 1938, Elizabeth Rohays Mary (d. 1993) (who m2, 24 July 1944, Capt. Sir Cecil Charles Boyd-Rochfort of Middleton Park (Westmeath)), only daughter of Maj-Gen. Sir James Lauderdale Gilbert Burnett of Leys, 13th bt., and had issue four sons (including the racehorse trainer Sir Henry Cecil, 1943-2013); killed in action in North Africa between 30 November and 2 December 1942.
He was killed in action at the Battle of the Aisne, 16 September 1914, during the lifetime of his mother. His widow died 30 May 1947.
Cecil, William Alexander Evering (1912-80), 3rd Baron Amherst of Hackney. Elder son of William Amherst Cecil (1886-1914) and his wife Gladys, daughter of Henry Charles Baggallay of Heatherhurst Grange, Frimley (Surrey), born 31 May 1912. Educated at Eton and Trinity College, Cambridge (BA 1933). Served in WW2 as Major in Royal Horse Guards, Middle East Force, 1940-45; Officer of the Order of St John of Jerusalem; CBE 1963. He married, 14 September 1939, Margaret Eirene Clifton (1921-2009), youngest daughter of Brig-Gen. Howard Clifton Brown MP of Holmbush, Faygate, Sussex and had issue:
(1) William Hugh Amherst Cecil (1940-2009), 4th Baron Amherst of Hackney (q.v.);
(2) Hon. Anthony Henry Amherst Cecil (b. 1947) of Compton Abbas (Dorset), educated at Eton; married 1st, 23 October 1969 (div. 1974), Fenella Jane, only daughter of David George Crichton MVO (who m2, 1978, John Ernest) and 2nd, 20 November 1974, Jane Elizabeth, daughter of Maj. Philip Norman Elston Holbrook of Chelsea, and by his second wife had issue two sons and one daughter;
(3) Hon. Angela Margaret Amherst Cecil (b. 1955), born 16 May 1955; married, 7 June 1980, (Gavin) Ian Reid, younger son of Col. (Percy Fergus) Ivo Reid OBE DL and had issue one son and two daughters.
He inherited Foulden Hall and property at Hackney (Middx) from his grandmother in 1919, but sold Foulden c.1971.
He died 22 July 1980. His widow died 22 September 2009.
Cecil, William Hugh Amherst (1940-2009), 4th Baron Amherst of Hackney. Elder son of William Alexander Evering Cecil (1912-80) and his wife Margaret Eirene Clifton, daughter of Brig-Gen. Henry Clifton Brown, born 28 December 1940. Educated at Eton. Succeeded his father as 4th Baron, 22 July 1980. Director of E.A. Gibson, shipbrokers, 1975-90 and Short Sea Europe plc, 1996-2009. He married, 30 March 1965, Elizabeth, daughter of Hugh Humphrey Merriman DSO MC TD DL of Hazel Hall, Peaslake (Surrey), and had issue:
(1) Hon. Aurelia Margaret Amherst Cecil (b. 1966), born 19 July 1966; educated at Heathfield; managing director and later chairman of London PR; married 1st, 20 December 1990 (div. 1993), Giles Wilson Mervyn Crewdson and 2nd, 2 September 2000, Rupert Nicholas Stephenson and had issue one son and two daughters;
(2) (Hugh) William Amherst Cecil (b. 1968), 5th and present Baron Amherst of Hackney; born 17 July 1968; educated at Eton; married, 1996, Nichola Jane, daughter of Maj. Timothy Michels, and had issue one son and two daughters.
He lived at Hillside House, Hyde (Hants). He inherited the Hackney estate from his father in 1980 but by 1990 most of the property had been sold; he remained lord of the manors of Lordshold, Kingshold and Grumbolds.
He died 2 April 2009.
Burke's Peerage & Baronetage, 2003, pp. 87-89; W. Robinson, The history and antiquities of Hackney, 1842, vol. 1, pp. 322-33; A. Saint, Richard Norman Shaw, 1976, pp. 241-42; Sir N. Pevsner & B. Wilson, The buildings of England: Norfolk 2 - North-West and South Norfolk, 2nd edn., 1999, pp. 299, 343; D. Clarke, The country houses of Norfolk: part 2 - The Lost Houses, 2008, pp. 34-37; P. Dallas, R. Last & T. Williamson, Norfolk gardens and designed landscapes, 2013, pp. 123-25; http://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Tyssen-47; information provided by the Hon. Mrs. Angela Reid.
Location of archives
Tyssen family of Hackney: deeds, estate and manorial records, 1548-1940 [London Metropolitan Archives, M/79, E/BVR]; estate and legal papers, 1611-1907 [Hackney Archives, D/F/AMH]
Tyssen-Amherst family of Didlington: deeds, estate and family papers, 1603-20th cent. [Norfolk Record Office MC84; MC39]
Coat of arms
Quarterly: 1st and 4th, barry of ten argent and azure, six escutcheons three two and one sable each charged with a lion rampant argent, a mullet for difference (for Cecil); 2nd and 3rd, gules three tilting spears two and one or headed argent (for Amherst).
Revision and acknowledgements
This account was first published 11 May 2014, and was revised 6 April 2015, 11 August and 30 December 2017, and 17 June 2018. I am most grateful to Alan Merryweather for additional information and to Jennifer Lee for a correction, and to Gordon Balderston for drawing my attention to the pedigree of the Tyssen family in Robinson's history of Hackney.