Uncle Walter James

One of the recipes in Lucretia Gye’s hand written note book is called Uncle Walter James’ Fruit Cake.

Recipe for Uncle Walter James Fruit Cake as written by Lucretia Gye. Her recipe book is at Market Lavington Museum

This is one of the items you may be able to try at the Museum Miscellany on Saturday 17th September in Market Lavington Community Hall, but here we consider who Uncle Walter James was.

Walter James was born about 1880. His father was a carpenter. We can find the James family on the 1881 census living on Church Street and in 1891 on New Street (The Muddle). By this time young Walter was described as a garden boy.

In 1901 the family lived on Parsonage Lane and Walter was now called a baker.

Walter James married Elizabeth Gye in 1904 in the Marylebone district of London. Elizabeth was the sister of Lucretia’s husband, Joseph so in calling him ‘Uncle’ , Lucretia  was using the name used by her children – amongst them, Tom Gye.

In 1911 Walter and Elizabeth lived at 1, High Street in Market Lavington (now the Post Office) along with their young son who was also Walter.

The James family were still on High Street in 1926. Elizabeth died in 1927, but Walter continued his business and was still on High Street with his son in 1939.

Uncle Walter James died in 1943.

For a picture of Walter James click here.

His cake recipe lives on and you may be able to sample it on September 17th.


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