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Photo of Arthur James Durbin Linard

Arthur James Durbin Linard

Birthplace Victoria Docks London Place of Death Perth Scotland


Full name of worker at H.M. Factory Gretna (and any other names they are known by): Arthur James Durbin Linard
Gender: Male
Date and place of birth: June 1871 Victoria Docks, London
Date and Place of Death: 14th November 1936, Perth
Nationality: English
Childhood: Brought up as son of a waterman
Parents: William John and Annie Edwards nee Atkinson
Parents occupations: Bargeman the Coal and corn merchant
Schools / universities attended and years of attendance: Not known
Occupation: Quartermaster sergeant/ inland revenue clerical
Place of residence at Gretna: Carlisle possibly
Marital status: Married twice
Children: None known
Travels: S Africa in army 1896-1913
Awards/recognitions: None known
Positions held: None known
Trivia / any other information: yes

Books published (Title, year of publication, publisher):
Books written about the individual or mentioning the individual (Title, year of publication, publisher):


Blogs about the individual:
Websites about the individual:

Further links, notes, and comments:


Arthur James Durbin Linard 1871-1936

Arthur James Durbin Linard was born at Victoria Docks, London on 12 June 1871. When he was baptised at St Mark’s, Victoria Docks on September 3rd 1871 he and his parents William John and Annie Edwards Linard were living at 5, Victoria Terrace. William John Linard was a bargeman at the time.

Arthur’s father, William John was born in Barking and his mother Annie Edwards nee Atkinson was born in East Ham.

William and Annie married on 6th October 1862 at St Mary Magdelene, East Ham.

The first census following the marriage is 1871, shortly before Arthur was born. This lists William John aged 33, Bargeman ( Corry), Annie , 32 , William 4, Ernest 2 , William Atkinson, 69 , Yardman gasworks, born Tilbury , father in law and Jane , mother in law aged 80 born Cornwall. If the ages are correct this would mean that Annie was born when her mother was 48.

The first child we know of born to this marriage is William Frederick Atkinson in 1866. Ernest John Lovell followed in 1869. A daughter Sarah was born in 1870.Arthur James Durbin was the third son to arrive in 1871. A fourth son, Alfred Charles Gilbert was born in 1873 and a second daughter Annie J in 1874. All the children were born at Victoria Docks. Sadly, Ernest died aged 5 in 1874.

The 1881 census lists the family at Custom House Terrace , father is now 40, a coal m[?]contractor, Annie is 39, the children are 14, 9 ( Arthur), 8 and 7 and all scholars.

William Atkinson , farmer born Tilbury, father in law , widowed aged 79 and two servants – a housemaid and a cook make up this household. MIssing is 11 year old Sarah. Sarah is something of a mystery appearing on a separate 1871 census so possibly the daughter of another William Linard,  waterman and mother Annie.

The 1891 census , William has moved his family and  business to 189 Romford Rd Forest Gate, West Ham. He is now 54 and described as a coal and corn merchant. Annie is 53. The ages do not tally with the 1881 census where William was 40. Arthur at 19 is described as a coal and corn merchant, Alfred C G at 18 is a corn merchant, Annie Jane at 17 has no occupation listed and one general domestic servant is employed.

In 1893, Arthur’s mother died and in 1896 his father remarried on 18th December 1896. The wedding to 42 year old Eliza Bennett took place at St Paul’s Church, Herne Hill.

It could have been the death of his mother and the forthcoming marriage of his father that influenced 24 years and 10 months old Arthur to join the Dragoons in April 1896. His service papers are comprehensive and lengthy. We are told that he had a scar on the outer lid of his left eye, he was 5ft 83/4 ins tall, of fresh complexion with grey eyes and brown hair.

He was posted to South Africa and transferred to the Royal Gloucester Regiment as a Quartermaster.

After 10 years in S Africa a long trail of correspondence began between various senior officers and their counterparts at home eventually leading to direct communication with the war office. It appears that after 10 years of such service abroad, Arthur was entitled to a posting home. This trail began in 1906.

In 1910 his father died. Left £134.16s 6d to his widow Eliza. During the time he was serving abroad we know from various directory entries and newspaper advertisements that his father was trading under the name William Linard and sons. This included Arthur.

In 1911 , widow Eliza was living in a 7 room house at Park Avenue, Barking, with a boarder and an elderly relative.

The 1911 census entry for the armed forces in S Africa listed Arthur as a quartermaster sergeant, Gloucester regiment, 39. This was 5 years after the first moves to secure him a posting at home. The correspondence was along the lines of he would have to wait until there was a vacancy for a quartermaster and he may have to lose rank.

In 1913, Arthur decided to write a long letter  on his own behalf – the full letter is included in the attached folder. Extracts “ I have been in this countyr over 10 years. I fancy somehow it is time I had a chance of doing something at home Don’t you?”

“ I should like any job at home in preference to my present billet….a fortnight ago .. said he would write to… Did he do it?”

“ If no please do not think I am “swinging it” but I am writing this as I am fed up out here . Sorry for any trouble I may be giving.”

The return happened for Arthur in June 1913 when he is found on a passenger list as a soldier, 41 sailing from Cape Town.

This was the start of WW1. Arthur’s brother William sailed to Newfoundland from Liverpool as a soldier with 10 and 7 year old daughters.

In April 1916 , Arthur now 44 married Edith Annie Belshaw in Sheffield. This places him in the area. It seems Edith was born in Houghton le Springs, County Durham to a mining family. She became a teacher of Art in 1904. Sadly , this marriage was very short as Edith died aged 32 in October 1916 in Cornwall. There is no explanation as to why the death occurred in Cornwall except for Arthur’s family link to the county.

We know from the 1921 census that Arthur was the sole  inhabitant of a dwelling in Carlisle and he was an ex Gretna worker. It seems reasonable to presume that he went to H M Factory Gretna following his wife’s death , early 1917 possibly. He was no longer in the army. Chelsea Pensioner records show that he was discharged in July 1913 following his return to England. What he did at Gretna is unknown but he later became an Inland revenue employee so he could have done clerical work or utilised his quartermaster skills. The 1917 London Gazette lists him as” Inland Revenue : Established clerk to a surveyor of taxes”

The Scotsman, Saturday 10th April 1926 announced the marriage at The Station Hotel, Perth of Arthur James Durbin Linard to Marion MacFarlane. Arthur of the Inland Revenue , Hereford and Marion of 52 Glasgow Road , Perth, on 7th April. The marriage registration describes Arthur as a Tax officer of 21 Whitecross Road, Hereford aged 54 , widowed. Marion at 38 is a drapery saleswoman and buyer. She is the daughter of a retired police superintendent.

Mary, born in 1888 in Crieff and had moved around Scotland as her father’s job had moved. In 1901 they were living at the Police Station, Cathedral Square, Dunblane where her father was the Superintendent of police. By 1911 , her farther was the deputy chief constable in Perth and she was a shop assistant, drapery.

We can only surmise but it is possible that Arthur met Marion at H M Factory Gretna. We will possibly never know. There is no other link.

This marriage only lasted 7 years and it seems the couple lived at 52 Glasgow Road, Perth which had been Marion’s family home. This is the address given on Arthur’s death registration on 14th November 1936 when he died of natural causes- acute heart failure aged 65.

Marion outlived Arthur by 32 years dying on  5th December 1968–“ found dead 10.30 am , Morningside. Widow of Clerical officer inland revenue.”

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