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Tuesday November 25 (1969)
Dear Dorothy, It was such a lovely surprise I had this morning and I want to say thank you very much for it. It has added a lot to my happiness this 72nd Birthday of mine. When I saw the parcel I wondered what and from whom it could be and then I was delighted with the contents of it. The slippers fit me 'just right' and they are so unusual and my word so smart - I'm delighted to have them.
How are you? I hope you are all right and that you've had no more 'intruders' _ you will know the sort I mean. I've not been able to get up to see you and your new home as was mentioned during those few pleasent days I had at Barbara's last August but I hope to do so very soon in the New Year. I will mention it to Bill Bragg that this will be for I think he would like to come also - I will let you have some warning in good time.
Have just got back from some shopping and feel almost frozen, it is most bitterly cold here today - we've had flurries of snow even. It has suddenly turned like that - but the weather has been remarkably good and mild up till now.
I am wondering if you might be at Canterbury on the 28th? I propose popping over in the afternoon for a quicky visit just to see your Mother for her birthday. I somehow feel it might well be her last. I expect to get there about 2.30 and to leave at 3.45. That's all for now I think except again my thanks for your very nice present and good wishes.
With love Reg.
Sorry I've found myself suddenly to be right out of ordinary envelopes!!

James Alfred Miller in 1967 at "The Gibralter Castle" Harpenden. Herts.

1967   Martin MILLER photo
9B Dingwall Avenue, Croydon, 31 March 49
My dear Dorothy.
This is what I overheard yesterday. I had walked along to the "Times" Office to see the coloured photographs of Charles and yourself displayed in the window. Behind me two girls were also looking and I heard one say - "Doesn't she look young! You could take her for Princess Elizabeth couldn't you. But it's like her isn't it." Who these people were I don't know, but I felt fully in agreement with their observations. Moreover, I had all day been connecting you in my mind with another royal personage - The Duchess of Kent. When I looked at you, that is who I felt strongly reminded of. And I thought that even the Duchess of Kent at her very best could not have looked smarter. I think you struck a most perfect note, and nothing nicer could have been turned-out by even the like of Norman Hartnell. you looked perfectly and truly "swell".
There were two other women I also admired. One was Mrs Marshall - to whom I would apply the word "chic". The other, I don't know who it was, but she was shortish, a little elderly and she was dressed in a soft blue. here it was not the clothes, but the very beautiful triple row of pearls she was wearing. They were lovely.
Altogether Dorothy I thought it was a grand day and very enjoyable. A very tiring one for you both and I expect you were glad when you were quietly back at home.
If there is ever any little thing I can do such as minding house or anything at all, please know that I should only be too glad to help, and never hesitate to let me know.
Good luck, good health and a very happy year to you both. with love, Reg
Registration District, Colchester.
Death in the Sub-district of Clacton in the County of Essex.
No 47
Sixteenth December 1949, Heath House, Tendring RD
Emma MILLER : Female : 88 yrs
Occupation, Of Leaches Lane, Colchester U.D. Widow of Alfred Charles MILLER, a Railway Station Master.
Cause of Death, 1a. Cardiac Failure / b. Exhastion / c. Senility. Certified by James WRIGHT M.B.
Description of Informant, William BROWN, Son in Law, 26 Kendall Road, Colchester.
When Registered, Twentieth December 1949
Registrar, D.R. PETERS.

Left to Right
James Alfred MILLER, Joan Aderlaide MILLER nee WALSH, Frederick Augustus MILLER, Mary Ann MILLER nee EASTWOOD

James Alfred MILLER married Joan Aderlaide WALSH on 27 Aug 1947in West Kingsdown, Kent.

        Martin MILLER photo

Frederick Augustus MILLER and Mary Ann MILLER nee EASTWOOD at their son James Alfred MILLER's marriage.

1947   Martin MILLER photo

1942 (Presuming Reg MILLER to be 45 yrs old)

Martin MILLER writes
"Reginald Miller was in the 1st. WW. 1915-1918 as a lieutenant. He served in the Indian Army after 1918. I think he served in Malaya and Borneo as a Colonel in 1953."

Michael LUMSDEN writes
Reg achievied the rank of Lieutenant Colonel: if he had one promotion a year until 1945 that would make him a lieutenant (indicated by the two pips) in 1942. So I would place the photo between 1940 - 42, but it could plausibly be earlier if he was an officer in the TA.

1942 Dorothy GIBSON photo.
Registration District, Colchester.
Death in the Sub-district of Colchester in the County of Essex.
No 173
Tenth March 1940, 14 Popes Lane U.D.
Alfred Charles MILLER : Male : 80 yrs
Occupation, Of 23, Studds Lane, Mile End, Colchester U.D. - formerly Station Master.
Cause of Death, 1(a) Myocardial Degeneration / 11. Senile Dementia. Certified by W.F. PAYNE MRCS
Description of Informant, Emma MILLER, Widow od Deceased. Present at the Death, 23 Studds Lane, Mile End, Colchester.
When Registered, Twelfth March 1940.
Registrar, H.J. MARSH

My Dear Dorothy
Today I received a few lines from Gladys telling me that a baby daughter has arrived for you and Charles. I am so pleased and send you my best wishes and hopes that everything has gone well. How very very proud Charles must be! And I expect your mother and Gladys are too.Please give them my love, and the same to you and a kiss for the bairn and tell your mother I shall be writing to her soon. I am writing this very hurridly. Spare time these days is very limited, but I felt I must send you a few lines straightaway. By this same post I am sending a word of congratulations direct to Charles (at the Spinney) where I assume he is having to stay at the moment.
Goodnight Dorothy - it is getting very late here, so I must "turn in" and don't forget I shall always be pleased to get a line from you when you are able, and I shall be most interested to know as soon as possible what the name of my new grandniece is to be! I begin to feel like Methuselah!!
With love Reg

1932 (Presuming Reg MILLER to be 35 yrs old.)
Reg MILLER, who was a member of the Croydon Repertory Theatre.
Michael LUMSDEN writes "I understand from my mother that Uncle Reg was not a gifted actor and showed a strong tendency to over act.."

1932 Michael LUMSDEN photo.

1926 (Presuming Reg to be 29 yrs old and Gladys to be 26 yrs old.)
23, Studds Lane, Colchester.

Emma MILLER would be 65 yrs, Alfred MILLER would be 67 yrs.

Nora DRINKALL photo.   Dorothy GIBSON photo.    

1926 (Presuming Gladys PERKINS to be 10 yrs old.)
Alfred MILLER would be 67 yrs, his daughter Gladys MILLER would be 26 yrs she married William Edward Cowper and their daughter was Nora DRINKALL.
The seated girl is Galdys Muriel PERKINS who married William LUMSDEN in 1946 and was Michael's mother.

Gladys MILLER standing


1926   Michael LUMSDEN photos.

1925 (Presuming Pat BROWN to have been born in 1923 and she is one and half years old)
Alfred Charles & Emma MILLER with their grand-daughter Pat BROWN

Alfred & Emma's fourth child daughter Hilda Maude MILLER married William BROWN at Lewisham in 1915.
Their daughter Patricia Lucy BROWN
(Keith Blaxall writes by email on 20 Apr 2017 Patricia Lucy BROWN date of birth is 25th June 1923)

Births Sep 1923
Patricia L BROWN / Christchurch / 2b / 1068
Mother maiden name MILLER


1925   Michael LUMSDEN photo.

1919 (Presuming Cyril to be 11 yrs old, Gladys 3yrs old and Dorothy to be 6 years old , Alfred would be 37 yrs old.)

Alfred Ernest PERKINS seated with Ethel standing behind
(Ethel cut herself out of the photo according to Dorothy GIBSON)
Cyril, Gladys Muriel and Dorothy Ethel.


1914 (Presuming Gladys MILLER to be 14 yrs old.)

Nora DRINKALL wrote on the back of this photo
"The Fox and Hounds, Clavering, Essex. With Alfred Charles and Emma. Gladys suffering from chicken pox peeping from upstairs window."

1914   Nora DRINKALL photo.

1914 (Presuming Gladys MILLER to be 14 yrs old.)
Emma MILLER nee BEECHING would be 51 yrs, Alfred Charles MILLER would be 53 yrs, Gladys MILLER, Nellie BUIST.

Nora DRINKALL wrote on the back of this photo
"With maid Nellie BUIST who came with them from Belvedere and looked after my mother in her younger years."

Martin MILLER and Jackie COOPER have established that Alfred Charles, Emma, Gladys ran the Fox & Hounds 1914 - 1917.
Fox_&_Hounds_History.pdf - written by Jackie Cooper who is a local historian at Clavering.

1914 Nora DRINKALL photo.

Michael LUMSDEN wrote by email 31 Aug 2007:-
My great grandfather was called MILLER and was a Station Master in Kent, Wateringbury and Snodland, then possibly Erith / Belverdere.
After coming into some money the husband and wife ran a pub, initially close to the railway line, but then up in Belverdere. I understand that they tended to lose money and eventually retired with limited means to East Anglia.
I once took Great Uncle Reg on a tour of this area, which is why I am familiar with the general location. The pub was as it would have been 100 years ago, sawdust was spread on the floor, and clay pipes were provided for customers who wanted to smoke. The wife (Emma MILLER nee BEECHING) was a very generous person and my mother (Gladys LUMSDEN nee PERKINS) spoke positively about her visits to her grandparents.

"The Fox", Belvedere. 1961
Nora DRINKALL wrote on the back of this photo
"Taken 1961 when we took my mother Gladys, to see it."

Info found by Martin MILLER:-
Kellys Directory of Kent has entries for these years for the Fox Public House Bedonwell Hill, Belvedere:-

  • 1911 Lewis Beeching [son of Emma's brother Edwin Nelson BEECHING]
  • 1913 Alfred Charles Miller
  • 1915 Herbert Beeching [son of Emma's brother Edwin Nelson BEECHING]
  • 1918 Arthur Hearn
Nora DRINKALL photo. 1961
Martin MILLER wrote by email Nov 2006:-
I found that he was the Landlord of a pub 'The Fox' Bedonwell Hill, Belvedere in Kent.
The only Fox I could find was 'The Fox', Nuxley Rd., so I went to the pub and asked some locals where The Fox, Bedonwell Hill was. It turned out that I was at the right pub, they changed the street names in the 1920's. On the wall of the pub was a framed history. It had Alfred Charles as Landlord from 1913 - 15, it said "he was "called up". As he would have been 55 yrs old, I presume it was not to the military but back to the Railway.
The next Landlord was Herbert BEECHING, he must have been Emma BEECHING's brother.

1908 (Presuming Gladys MILLER to be 8 yrs old.)

Nora DRINKALL wrote on the back of this photo
"The Fox, Belvedere. With Alfred Charles and Emma. Reg about 11 yrs, Gladys about 8 yrs."

1908   Nora DRINKALL photo.

Circa 1907

Alfred Charles MILLER Masonic Pouch

Property of Martin MILLER 1961

1907 (Presuming this photo taken when Alfred MILLER joined the Masons)
He would be 48 yrs in 1907.

1907_Masonic_Certificate_Alfred MILLER.pdf - Owned by Martin MILLER

1907 Michael LUMSDEN photo.
Marriage solemnized at the Parish Church in the Parish of St James Hatcham in the County of London.
No 370
When Married, March Twelfth 1907.
Alfred Ernest Aldridge PERKINS : 24 yrs : Bachelor : Profession, Clerk.
Residence at Time of Marriage, 8, Malpas Road
Fathers Name, Andrew PERKINS (deceased) : Profession of Father, Bootmaker.
Ethel Beeching MILLER : 25 yrs : Spinster
Residence at Time of Marriage, Station House, Belvedere
Fathers Name, Alfred Charles MILLER. : Profession of Father, Station-Master.
Married in the Parish Church according to the Rites and Ceremonies of the Established Church by or after Banns by me, CM HALLAM? (Curate)
This Marriage was solemnized between us, Alfred Ernest Aldridge PERKINS, Ethel Beeching MILLER.
In the Presence of us, Alfred Charles MILLER, Sidney PERKINS.

St James' Church, Hatcham
The church where Alfred Ernest Aldridge PERKINS and Ethel Beeching MILLER married.

1907   Michael LUMSDEN photo.
Letter from Edwin Nelson and Elizabeth Ann BEECHING to Ethel Beeching MILLER dated the day before her marriage to Alfred PERKINS.
Mill House, Springfield, Maidstone, March 11th 1907
My Dear Niece
It is with the greatest pleasure we wish you "good luck".
This your wedding day it is the most important change in ones life. So that before you go to Church make up your mind to live to your husband with love and affection let your happiness be his and your troubles share. You may not find it always a bed of roses, but if the thorns do appear, share them together and you will find to share the burden will be much lighter. Try and please each other, fall in with each others views, and make up your mind to both have a happy life, until death do part. We hope you will have a nice honeymoon and a safe return and may "God bless you both" is the sincere wish of
Your Aunt + Uncle Beeching
Letter owned by Michael LUMSDEN

1907 Approx (Presuming Ethel MILLER to be 26 yrs and Alfred E A PERKINS to be 25 yrs old.)
Ethel Beeching MILLER and Alfred PERKINS in a photo possibly cut out of a larger group picture.
A studio portrait in fancy dress.

Ethel is wearing the same outfit, but appears to be wearing a wedding ring in the studio portrait but not in the group photo. So these photos may have been taken before and after their marriage in March 1907.

1907   Dorothy GIBSON photos

1905 (Presuming Alfred Charles MILLER to be 46 yrs old.)

1905 Dorothy GIBSON photo.

1902 (Presuming Ethel MILLER to be 21 yrs old.)
Ethel Beeching MILLER
Bn 28 Nov 1881: Dd 21 Aug 1971

1902 Dorothy GIBSON photo.
RG13 : Piece 701 : Folio 58 : Page 3
House at Railway Station, Station Rd., Erith, Kent.

Alfred Chas MILLER : Head : Married : 41 yrs :
Occupation, Station Master SER : Worker : Born, Ramsgate, Kent.
Emma MILLER : Wife : Married : 39 yrs : Born, Maidstone, Kent.
Ethel Beeching MILLER : Daughter : Single : 19 yrs : Born, Maidstone, Kent.
Alfred Sydney MILLER : Son : 15 yrs : Born, Maidstone, Kent.
Frederick Augustus MILLER : Son : 13 yrs : Born, Maidstone, Kent.
Hilda Maud MILLER : 11 yrs : Daughter : Born, Maidstone, Kent.
Reginald MILLER : 3 yrs : Son : Born, Halling, Kent.
[Next Page]
Gladys MILLER : 13 months : Daughter : Born, Belvedere, Kent.

1900 (Presuming Ethel MILLER to be 19 yrs and Ada to be 14 yrs old.)
Vernard Beeching BOAKES, Ada BEECHING, Ethel Beeching MILLER, Herbert J. BEECHING.

Herbert and Ada children of Edwin Nelson BEECHING and Elizabeth Ann BEECHING nee HARDLOW.
Dorothy GIBSON nee PERKINS remembered her mother Ethel talking about Rochester and her two cousins, one of them was called Herbert, he went on to have a chain of bakeries. Her cousins used to take Ethel out boating when she was a young girl..
Vernard Beeching BOAKES son of John William BOAKES and Helen BOAKES nee BEECHING.

1900       Michael LUMSDEN photo.

25th Oct 1899
Halling Railway Station
We the undersigned beg your acceptance of the accompying Marble Timepiece and Prse of Gold, in appreciation and recognition of the courteous and obliging mannerin which you have discharged the duties of Station Master here during a period of 9 1/2 years.
Wishing you every success in your new appointment
We remain
Faithfully yours

1899 Alfred C MILLER's leaving plaque owned by Martin MILLER
Registration District; Strood
1898 Birth in the Sub-district of Strood in the County of Kent
No 196
When and where born; Twenty Fourth November 1897; Evaline Place, New Town? Halling, Strood.
Name; Reginald : Boy
Name of father; Alfred Charles MILLER.
Name of mother; Emma MILLER formerly BEECHING.
Occupation of father; Railway Station Master.
Description of informant; Emma MILLER, Mother, Evaline Place, New Town? Halling.
When registered; Third January 1898.
Registrar; Samuel CASWELL.

1897 Approx (Presuming Alfred Charles MILLER to be 46 yrs old.)

1897 Dorothy GIBSON photo.

1891 Approx (Presuming Emma MILLER to be 30 yrs old.)
I have no idea what the real date is for this photo but believe Emma looks older than twenty, which was her age when she was married in 1881.
Born 25th Nov 1861: Died 16th Dec 1949.

1891 Dorothy GIBSON photo.
RG12 : Piece 652 : Page 9
Halling, Kent.

Alfred C MILLER : Head : Married : 31 yrs, Occupation; Station Master : Born; Ramsgate, Kent.
Emma MILLER : Wife : Married : 29 yrs : Born; Maidstone, Kent.
Ethel B MILLER : Daughter : 9 yrs : Born, Maidstone, Kent.
Alfred S MILLER : Son : 5 yrs : Born; Maidstone, Kent.
Frederick A MILLER : Son : 3 yrs : Born; Maidstone, Kent.
Hilda M MILLER : Daughter : 1 yrs : Born; Maidstone, Kent.

Registration District, Maidstone.
Birth in the Sub-district of East Maidstone in the County of Kent.
No 248
When and where born; Twenty Eighth November 1881, 5 John Street, U.S.D.
Ethel Beeching : Girl
Name of Father; Alfred Charles MILLER
Name of Mother; Emma MILLER formerly BEECHING.
Occupation of Father; Railway Ticket Collector.
Description of Informant; Emma MILLER, Mother, 5 John Street, Maidstone.
When Registered; Twenty Eighth December 1881.
Registrar; N.N. PEARSON.

54, Perryfield St, Maidstone, Kent, which is where Alfred Charles and Emma MILLER were living in the 1881 Census.

3 Apr 1881 Census.
RG11 : Piece 0932 : Folio 31 : Page 56
54, Perryfield St, Maidstone, Kent.

William CRUTTENDEN : Head : Married : 24 yrs, Occupation; Grocer : Born; Goudhurst, Kent.
Mary CRUTTENDEN : Wife : Married : 23 yrs : Born; Sittingbourne, Kent.
William G. CRUTTENDEN : Son : Unmarried : 1 yr : Born; Maidstone, Kent.
Alfred C. MILLER : Lodger : Married : 21 yrs, Occupation; Ticket Collector : Born; Ramsgate, Kent.
Emma MILLER : Lodger Wife : Married : 19 yrs : Born; Maidstone, Kent.

Martin MILLER photo 2006
Registration District, Maidstone.
Marriage solemnized at the Register Office in the District of Maidstone in the County of Kent.
No 70
When Married, Sixth January 1881.
Alfred Charles MILLER : 21 yrs : Bachelor
Profession, Ticket Collector.
Residence at Time of Marriage, 8 Saint George Square, Maidstone.
Father's Name, Thomas MILLER.
Profession of Father, Railway Guard.
Emma BEECHING (described in the Certificate as Emma BEECHER)
21 yrs : Spinster
Residence at Time of Marriage, 14 Randall Street, Maidstone.
Father's Name, Edwin Thomas BEECHING
Profession of Father, Papermaker.
Married in the Register Office by Certificate before me, Richr HOLMES Jnr Registrar, Geo. KNOWLES Deputy Supert Registrar.
This Marriage was solemnized between us, Alfred Charles MILLER, Emma BEECHING.
In the Presence of us, Edwin Nelson BEECHING, Minnie BEECHING.

1879 Approx (Presuming Alfred Charles MILLER to be 20 yrs old.)
Alfred Charles MILLER

1879 Michael LUMSDEN photo.