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Ada Ruddick BellMember of the Women’s Police Service
Information supplied through Research Project led by Nigel Crompton.
Full name of worker at H.M. Factory Gretna (and any other names they are known by) : Ada Ruddick Bell nee Johnson
Date and Place of Birth: 19 May 1878 Yarm, Yorkshire
Date and Place of Death: 15 August 1949 28 Wilson Street, Clitheroe
Childhood: At least 4 siblings and 1 stepsister.
Parents: Mark & Martha Elizabeth (nee Allison) Johnson. Her stepmother was Elizabeth (nee Ferguson) Johnston.
Parent’s occupations: N/K
Schools / universities attended and years of attendance: N/K
Occupation: Member of the Women’s Police Service at Gretna.
Place of residence at Gretna: N/K
Job title at Gretna: Member of the Women’s Police Service.
Marital status: Married James P Bell in 1912.
Trivia / any other information:
Ada was born into the family of Mark & Martha Johnson who lived in Yarm, Yorkshire. She was joined by 4 known siblings but her mother passed away in 1904. By this time she had left home and was employed as a housemaid in a suburb of Redcar in 1901, but can not be confirmed on the 1911 census.
Mark still living in Yarm married Elizabeth (Ferguson) during 1906 and with her youngest daughter, Eva, were living with Mark and Edgar.
In 1912, Ada married a James P Bell in the Ripon registration district.
The 1921 census, Ada has been widowed and is living with her grandmother in a property just off the High Street in Yarm. She now is employed in Eaglescliffe brick works.
The 1939 registration document shows she is living in Yarm but in a different property off the High Street and is involved in sand blasting operations.
During 1946 she retired from the brickworks but as the manager. In 1949, she moved to be with her nephew John William Donaghy who lived in Clitheroe in Lancashire. John, his brother Robert and sister Esther were the children of Ada’s sister Annie.
The local Clitheroe newspaper, The Advertiser and Times, in their edition published on 19 August 1949 not only announced the date and location of Ada’s death but then in the obituary gave the first indication that Ada was in the WPS at Gretna. Unfortunately, no other details of her service at HM factory has been located.
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