Henry Joseph TURRELL (1825–1898)
His wife Mrs Honor Wearne TURRELL, née Hocking (1832–1897)
St Michael section: Row 26, Grave L47½

Henry & Honor Turrell






DIED JAN. 19, 1897



DIED MARCH 21, 1898



Henry Joseph Turrell was born in Beaconsfield, Buckinghamshire on 2 November 1825 and baptised there on 31 December, the only son of Joseph Turrell and his wife Ann. He was matriculated at the University of Oxford from Lincoln College at the age of 18 on 2 May 1844, and gained his M.A, In 1848. He was ordained in 1850, and at the time of the 1851 census was the Curate of Gulval in Cornwall, lodging with a farmer and his family at Trevarrack. In 1852 he was appointed Curate of St Peter-le-Bailey Church in Oxford.

Honor Wearne Hocking was born in St Ives, Cornwall in 1832 and baptised there on 4 October. She was the daughter of Samuel Hocking and Honor Nye. Her father was a surgeon, and at the time of the 1841 census she was eight years old living at Middle Hill, St Ives with her parents (who were both born at St Ives) and her younger siblings John (7), Joseph (5), and Eleanor (1). In 1851 Honor (18) was at the Terrace, St Ives with with her parents and three new siblings: Eleanor Adams Hocking (8), Mary Allen Hocking (4), and Adela Hocking (2). Her father described his occupation at length: he was a magistrate, a member of the Royal College of Surgeons of England, and a general practitioner licensed in midwifery.

In the third quarter of 1859 in Penzance, Henry Joseph Turrell married Honor Wearne Hocking, and they had three sons (with their births all announced in Jackson’s Oxford Journal):

  • Harry Joseph Turrell (born at 65 High Street, Oxford on 7 August 1863 and baptised at St Peter-in-the-East Church on 4 September)
  • Walter John Turrell (born at 65 High Street, Oxford on Palm Sunday 1865 and baptised at St Peter-in-the-East Church on 12 May)
  • Arthur George Turrell (born at 65 High Street, Oxford on 6 June 1866 and baptised at St Peter-in-the-East Church on 29 June).

96 Holywell Street



At the time of the 1861 census, just over a year after their marriage, Henry (35), described as a clergyman without cure of souls, and his wife Honor (27) were living at 96 Holywell Street, Oxford (right), now just to the east of the new buildings of New College, with their cook and housemaid.


65 High Street

By 1863 they had moved to 65 High Street (left), in the parish of St Peter-in-the East, where all three of their sons were born.

Turrell wrote two books: A Manual of Logic; or, a statement and explanation of the Laws of Formal Thought (1870) and The Thirty-nine Articles … briefly explained. With scriptural references (1878).

At the time of the 1871 census Henry, still described as a clergyman without cure of souls, was living here with his wife and three young sons aged seven, five, and four, plus a governess and a general servant.

On 19 February 1881 Jackson’s Oxford Journal announced that a new private hall had been opened at Oxford by Henry Joseph Turrell, and that the numbers on its books were currently just four undergraduates.

Turrell’s Hall was originally situated here at his house at 65 High Street. The Honours Register of the University of Oxford 1883 states that in that year there were only two private halls (as opposed to academical halls such as St Mary Hall) then in Oxford: Charsley’s Hall, and Turrell’s Hall, and that a new Statute of 1882 had enacted that any Member of Convocation above the age of 28 might obtain a licence to open “a suitable building as a Private Hall for the reception of Academical students with the title of ‘Licensed Master,’ and make provision for the proper government of the students under his charge. They are subject to all other Statutes of the University, and they partake in its privileges, and are admissible to its degrees, in the same way as other students.”

In 1881 Henry Turrell, described this time as a clerk in orders, was still living at 65 High Street with his wife and three sons (now aged 17, 15, and 14), plus a cook, parlourmaid, and housemaid. The only pupil in residence in the house was Octavius Beattie, aged 25 and born in Brazil; but at this stage members of private halls were allowed to live out.

A few months later, on 4 June 1881, Henry Turrell’s first two sons were matriculated at the University of Oxford from Turrell Hall on the same day: Harry was 17 and Walter was 16. His third son Arthur was also matriculated from his father’s hall on 6 May 1884 at the age of 17.

On 5 November 1881 the following preliminary notice appeared in Jackson’s Oxford Journal advertising an auction to be held at the Mitre Hotel on 29 November:

The valuable FREEHOLD DWELLING HOUSE, No. 65, High-street, Oxford, lately known as “Turrell’s Hall,” containing three large reception rooms, eight good bed rooms, and usual domestic offices, with a large Garden at the back 60 feet wide: the House has a frontage of 20 feet to High-street, and the Ground extends to a depth of 180 feet.

It was probably at this point that Turrell’s Hall moved to larger premises nearby, namely “The Willows”, on the site of the present Magdalen College School 1894 building facing Cherwell Place. By 1884, 65 High Street was used for university lodgings, run by a Mrs Reeves.

The architect H. W. Moore was matriculated at the University of Oxford from Turrell Hall in 1884, but he did not proceed to a degree.

On 15 August 1885 it was reported that the managers of Spring Hill College were in treaty for the purchase of Turrell’s Hall, Magdalen Bridge, for the proposed move of a dissenting college, under the title of Mansfield College, to Oxford: but this sale appears to have fallen through, as the college rented premises in the High Street while its new buildings were erected in Mansfield Road.

On 23 July 1887 the Revd Turrell was oddly still described as "of Turrell’s Hall, Magdalen Bridge" when he appeared in Oxford County Court as the defendant in a claim brought by Arthur Butler of 67 James Street for £1 6s.8d. for one month’s wages in lieu of notice. Butler had been a gardener at Turrell Hall, where he lived in a loft over the stable, and he also had to make himself generally useful about the house. On 16 June he absented himself without leave at 7.45pm to go home to get his trousers mended at the knees, and when he returned at 9.45pm Mrs Turrell dismissed him. On the next day two policemen were sent to turn him out of his living quarters. He was paid up to the 18th, but was given no notice:

Mrs Turrell said that she, at the request of the plaintiff, had a man to assist him in the garden, and on the 17th ult. she said to him that she begged he would understand that he was a house servant, and his work was not done at a stated hour like a day labourer’s, and that if she required his time she must have it in the evening as well as in the day. She told him that as the weather was dry she wanted him to water the garden. On that particular day she told him not to leave the house except with permission, and that he was to stay in to help the other man. He looked at his boots, and made a remark about sending a note, and later on she asked the servants where he was, and they said he had gone out. He came in at a quarter to ten, and she told him he could go home to his father’s, for she would not have him there any longer, as he had disobeyed her orders. On the next day she sent him the amount of wages due.

Henry Turrell won the case.

By the time of the 1891 census, Henry, who was still described as a Clerk in Holy Orders, was living at 15 New Inn Hall Street (nw 24 St Michael's Street) with his wife and two of his sons: Harry (27) was now a barrister-at-law, and Arthur (24) was a university student. Their middle son Walter (25) spent census night at the Radcliffe Infirmary, where he was the house surgeon.

The following year there was a fire at their New Inn Hall Street (St Michael's Street) house. Jackson’s Oxford Journal of 27 August 1892 reported that Turrell’s two servants had been left in charge of the house during the absence of the family in Surrey, and when Eliza Haynes (37) was heating beeswax and turpentine on a gas stove to make furniture polish, it ignited, Eliza’s clothes were set alight, and she died.

In 1893 Turrell’s Hall at Magdalen Bridge was demolished to make way for the new Magdalen College School boarding house.

Two of their sons were married in the mid-1890s:

  • In the second quarter of 1895 in Kensington, Harry Joseph Turrell married Anita Frances Abinger (born in Kings Langley, Hertfordshire in 1870/1).
  • In the second quarter of 1897 at Andover, Walter John Turrell married Margaret Sybil Lywood (born in Maddington, Wiltshire in 1874/5).

By January 1897 the family had moved to 53 Chalfont Road in St Margaret’s parish, where Mrs Turrell died:

† Mrs Honor Wearne Turrell, née Hocking died at 53 Chalfont Road at the age of 65 (headstone says 63) on 19 January 1897, and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery (burial recorded in the parish register of St Michael’s Church).

People living in Chalfont Road would normally have been buried in the St Giles section of the cemetery, but the Turrells may have reserved their plot while they were living in New Inn Hall Street (St Michael's Street) in St Michael’s parish.

Henry Turrell died just over a year after his wife:

† Henry Joseph Turrell died at 53 Chalfont Road at the age of 72 on 21 March 1898, and was buried at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery on 26 March (burial recorded in the parish register of St Michael’s Church).

His effects came to £936 6s. 4d. His obituary in the Guardian of 6 April 1898 read:

The death is announced of the Rev. Henry Joseph Turrell, M.A., so well known as the founder of the hall at Oxford which bore his name. He was a native of Beaconsfield, and after matriculating at Magdalen Hall he proceeded to Lincoln College, and took his degree (Third Class Lit. Hum.) in 1848. He was ordained in 1850. His first curacy was at Gulval, Cornwall, where he remained two years, and for the next two years he was curate of St. Peter-le-Bailey, Oxford. He then devoted himself to preparing members of the University for their examinations. He was, says the Oxford Chronicle, highly successful as a “coach,” and this led about 1880 to the establishment of Turrell’s Hall at 65 High-street, and this was subsequently removed to “The Willows,” Magdalen-bridge, on the site now occupied by the Magdalen School boarding house. When Mr. Turrell founded the hall he was allowed to take any number of members “residing out,” but subsequently this privilege was considerably curtailed, and he protested strongly at what he considered the unfair action of the University authorities. He was the author of A Manual of Logic and The Thirty-Nine Articles of the Church of England Briefly Explained. His wife pre-deceased him about twelve months ago. He leaves three sons: Mr. Harry Joseph Turrell, a member of the Oxford circuit; Mr. Walter John Turrell, the respected physician of Oxford; and Mr. Alfred George Turrell. The funeral took place on Saturday week at St Sepulchre’s Cemetery, where the service was conducted by the Rev. J. O. Carter, curate-in-charge of St. Margaret’s.

The sons of Henry Joseph and Honor Wearne Turrell
  • Harry Joseph Turrell (born 1863) and his wife Anita had no children. At the time of the 1901 census they were living with one servant at Groves Lodge, Speer Road, Thames Ditton, and Harry was a barrister-at-law. At the time of the 1911 census Harry was alone with two servants at 5 Hurlingham Court, Fulham. He became the Recorder of Banbury, and his portrait was taken by Lafayette in 1928. He died at 5 Hurlingham Court on 10 April 1936. His effects came to £481 8s. 7d., but when his widow died on 30 May 1951 she left £2,845 17s.
  • Walter John Turrell (born 1865) became a well-known Oxford doctor,and the first physiotherapist at the Radcliffe Infirmary. At the time of the 1901 census he and his wife Margaret were living at 1 St Clement’s Street with their son Henry Gifford Turrell (3) and two servants. In 1911 Walter was boarding at the Fortescue Arms in Chulmleigh, North Devon, but his wife was home at 1 St Clement’s with their son, now 13. Walter died on 27 January 1943 at the Acland Home: see his obituary in the Oxford Times, 29 January 1943, p. 8f. His home was still at Cherwell Lodge, 1 St Clement’s Street, and his effects came to £7,482 2s. 2d.
  • Arthur George Turrell (born 1866) was working as a commission agent in 1901 and living at 14 Holyrood Street, Newport, Isle of Wight, looked after by a housekeeper. In the last quarter of 1903 on the Isle of Wight he married Edith Neale. At the time of the 1911 census he and his wife were living at Guadalupe Terrace, Sandown, Isle of Wight with their daughters Edith Honor (6) and Margaret Anita (4), and Arthur was described as a commission agent book maker. Although Arthur was 48 when the First World War broke out, he joined up immediately in October 1914 as a Private in the Second Sportsmen’s Battalion of the Royal Fusiliers, and fought in France from 1915 to 1918. He died at the Royal National Hospital, Godshill on 19 September 1919 of illness contracted while on active service; his home was then Seaside House, Culver Road, Sandown, Isle of White. His effects came to only £28.



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