Finch Family Wedding Photo from 1942

Few of our family who lived in Zennor Road had a camera of their own so the only time that they were photographed were in group photos at family weddings. I am presenting here photos from the earliest family wedding photos we have, that of my great Aunt Ivy Elizabeth FINCH who was married in 1942 to Christopher MATTHEWS. The wedding was at St Stephen’s Church, Weir Road and the family walked the short distance up from Zennor Road to attend. We can identify very many of the people in the photograph but some remain a mystery. We would appreciate any information about who some of the others may be.

The Wedding of Ivy FINCH and Christopher MATTHEWS 25 May 1942

The marriage photo is the first comprehensive photo we have of the Finch family. It is taken outside the door of St Stephen’s Church. It is a typical wartime photograph in that the men are in military fatigues and the numbers of women greatly outnumber the numbers of men, since many were away on service. The left side of the photo appears to be occupied by the Finches and the right by the Matthews. We have annotated everyone we can identify in the photograph. Ivy’s mother is present (Elizabeth Ann GWYTHER, my great-grandmother); her father is present in another photograph and hence was definitely at the wedding but strangely absent from this shot. Ivy’s sister (Lily) and her husband (Jim TEBBY) are there with two of her brothers (George Edward and Ernest and their wives). My grandfather (John) is absent because he was serving in Burma at the time but my Nan (Elsie May PETTLEY) is carrying my Aunt Jean (b. 1940) whilst my Aunt Elsie Christina Finch and uncle George Sidney Finch are the bridesmaid and page boy. The other bridesmaids are Ivy’s neices (Lily, Shirley, Rose), daughters of her brother George. Ernest’s daughter Sylvia (who was ~2 at the time) is the child being carried by Ivy’s sister in law Helen Scotland STEWART.

My Nan’s sister Alice PETTLEY is present in the shot – she also lived in Zennor Road, and she stands next to another lady whom we cannot identify. However a photo of that lady exists amongst Aunt Alice’s photograph collection and so she may be one of their sisters, possibly Violet Pettley.

Ivy’s uncle and aunt are in the photo – John Sidney FINCH (1886-1956?) and his wife Eleanor Maria MOFFATT. John is lost behind an elderly lady but my Dad is fairly sure it is him and his wife is very clear on the far left. An elderly lady with a wide hat covered in flowers stands in front of him in the middle on the left. She has her arms over one of two dark-haired girls who look like twins and are probably her granddaughters. A middle-aged man and woman stand next to them and they may be the parents of the children. We cannot identify this family group but our best guess is that they are from the Trim or the Thwaites family who were Ivy’s cousins and lived on Zennor Road.

St Stephen’s Church, Clapham Park, Weir Road

The church of St Stephen’s Clapham Park was the closest to Zennor Road and the majority of the family baptisms and marriages took place there. The church has now sadly been demolished but this image dates from around 1930, before Grove Road was renamed Weir Road (the Grove Road sign is visible in front of the church). The marriage photograph taken above was taken in the main doorway.

St Stephen’s Clapham Park in around 1930

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