Wales - The Broket Archive

Brokets of Wales

Pre-1940 Welsh Brokets consisted of a single 19th C family of 3 generations in Monmouthshire, South Wales—apart from 2 isolated records near Chepstow and Mold, Flint. They mostly lived in Mynyddyslwyn and Trevethan, within 10 miles of Newport across the Severn from Bristol.

Contents of this page:

  1. Introduction
  2. Thomas 1792-1857 and Cicillia WATKINS
  3. Thomas 1815-84 and Sarah JAMES
  4. James 1825-1907 and Ann GRIFFITHS
  5. Other records
  6. Map

1. Introduction

The Welsh Broket men were industrial Labourers like Ironworkers and Mill Furnacemen. When employed the women were mainly in domestic service. They were unconnected to the Brokets of Wells in Somerset across the Severn to the south or Lindridge in Worcestershire to the east. They may well have been connected to the Brokets of N Yorkshire.

The first record was of Thomas who married a Brecon bride 1813. He gave his birthplace in the 1851 census as Blackwell, Durham, and therefore was the Thomas baptised in Aycliffe 1792. Two of his surviving sons migrated with their families back to Durham and Yorkshire and the other died 1875. There are no known surviving Broket descendants. In 2005 the only Brockets in Wales were a family from Scotland, who had settled in Bedwellty Monmouthshire in the 1940s.

Mynyddyslwyn is a parish in county Monmouth, 8½ miles NW of Newport, and 7 SW of Pontypool. In the 19th C the inhabitants were employed in the numerous collieries, ironworks, stone quarries, and in cotton-weaving.1
Trevethan is a parish in county Monmouth, 7 miles from Usk, and 1 mile from Pontypool, c 17 m N of Cardiff, containing the townships of Abersychan, Pontnewydd, and Pont-y-pool. Many of the inhabitants are employed in the collieries, lime-pits, and extensive iron-works, chiefly at Pont-y-pool.2

2. Thomas 1792-1857 and Cicillia WATKINS

Thomas b c 1791,3 bap 4 Mar 1792 Aycliffe, Durham, son of Thomas and Hannah LINCOLN. Family folklore suggests that Thomas lost a fortune/house at cards and had to decamp to South Wales, but more likely aged 22 he was seeking a fortune—the Aycliffe clan didn’t apparently have one to lose. Married Cicillia WATKINS 28 Dec 1813 Llandefalle Brecon.4 Occupation: Labourer Oct 1841,5 Clarke Dec 1841,6 Labourer 1847,7 Letter Carrier 18518 and 57,9 Labourer 1862.10 Thomas and Cicillia were parents of the 2 heads of families recorded in the 1851 census for Wales, and grandparents of others through to the 1901 census, by which time they had migrated back to Durham and Yorkshire.

Census records for Thomas and Cicillia:    Read more

Thomas d 20 Jan 1857 Newbridge—on Usk, c 6 m EES of Pontypool—Mynyddyslwyn aged 63 of Pleurisy 2 weeks.11 Cecilia—sometimes Cilia—d 1862 Newport Monmouth.12 Children:

  1. Thomas, bap 1815. Married 1841 Sarah JAMES in Llanhilleth Parish Church, c 5 m W of Pontypool. 6 children. Thomas died 1884 Sheffield, aged 69.13 Sarah died 1900 Sheffield, aged 75, ie b c 1825.14
  2. Hannah, b c 1820. In 1841, aged 20, b in county, she was a Servant in Abergavenny. Another servant in the household was Margaret LLOYD, 20. Hannah married 25 Dec 1841 George LLOYD, Gardener, at Mynyddislwyn Parish Church, Monmouth, Spinster and Bachelor, both of full age, she residing Newbridge on Usk, he ?Blaenau, she signing with an ‘X’.15
  3. James, bap 1825. Married 1847 Ann GRIFFITHS at the Particular Baptist Tabernacle, Trevethin. 10 children. James died 1907 Stockton, Co Durham, aged 81,16 Ann d there 1911, aged 84, ie b c 1827.17
  4. John, b c 1821, d 3 Jul 1844 Newbridge Mynyddyslwyn of Pneumonia 17 weeks, aged 23, Boiler Maker, informant Thomas Brocket Ocupier Mynyddyslwyn;18
  5. Anne, bap 26 Nov 1826 at the Tabernacle Independent Chapel, Newport Monmouth.19 Married 13 Jan 1849 William WALTERS alias WATERS.20 He died 1878; she d 1913 Rogerstone, Monmouthshire. Children:21 Cecilia d 21 Jan 1850 aged 1 year and 2 weeks; William b 2 May 1851; John b 22 Aug 1853; Isaac b 30 Oct 1855; still born son 24 May 1858; Celia b 12 Sep 1859, d 1 Jun 1865; still born son 1863; Hannah Jane, b 14 Apr 1865 Crumlin, Mynyddyslwyn; Thomas Brockett, b 4 Jul 1869, d 7 Aug 1870; Cecilia Ann, b 3 Feb 1873.
  6. David, b c 1833. Informant of father’s death 1857. Married 2 Mar 1862 Emma SMITH in ?Llancrechan, Pontypool, he a Bachelor, aged 29, Smith, she a Spinster, 23, she signing with an ‘X’, both residing Croesyceilog, 2 m S of Carmarthen.22 He died 1875 Newport, Monmouth aged 42.23 Presumed child:
    1. Annie, recorded in the 1881 census aged 13—ie b c 1868, but no GRO record—at 2 Pound Houses, Mynyddyslwyn, b Newport Monmouth, Niece of George HODDENOTT, aged 44, b Wells, Somerset, Butcher and wife Emma, aged 41, b Carleon—c 1 m N of Newport—Monmouth. No further record of Annie found.

    In 1877 Emma, Widow, aged 36, had married George HODDENOTT, Master Butcher, Bachelor, aged 40, at the Register Office Newport, both residing Newbridge.24

    William must also have been a son of Thomas, husband of Cicillia WATKINS. He lived in the same areas as that family: Pontypool, Middlesbrough, Trevithin, and his work as a Baller and a Forgeman were the same as other members. When he was born is not known. The 1841 census, which rounded figures up, probably considerably overestimated his age, but also he may have underestimated it when he was with Eliza. That he was the son of Thomas and Hannah of Whitby is impossible, since he was b 1803. In 1847 William, Millfurnaceman, Bachelor of full age, son of Thomas, Toll-bar Keeper, married Eliza RICHARDS, 18, Spinster, both residing Middlesbrough.25

    Census records for William and Eliza:    Read more

    William was probably the Ironworker who died of chronic bronchitis 9 Dec 1879 in the Union Workhouse, Bishop Auckland, Durham, aged 60 [ie b c 1819].26 Did Eliza die 1894 Dartford London, aged 64?27

3. Thomas 1815-84 and Sarah JAMES

1st son of Thomas and Cicillia WATKINS, Thomas was bap 1815. Occupation: Baller 1843.28 Married 9 Oct 1841 Sarah JAMES in Llanhilleth Parish Church, Pontypool, Torfn, Wales, he a Bachelor of full age, Baller, she a minor, both residing Abersychan, both signing with an ‘X’, as also witness Anne Brocket, ?sister.29 Sarah signed with an ‘X’ in 1843.30 Thomas died 1884 Sheffield, aged 69.31 Sarah died 1900 Sheffield, aged 75, ie b c 1825.32

Census records for Thomas and Sarah:    Read more


  1. James b 22 Jan 1843 Newbridge Mynyddyslwyn; d 1851 Pontypool,33 aged 8.
  2. John b 1845 Pontypool.34 Married Annie Eliza SANDERSON. The 1881 census for Brightside Bierlow—the area of Sheffield lying north of the River Don—recorded John, aged 30, b Wales, Head Furnace Man (Fac Lab); wife Annie, b 1862. John’s occupation: Furnaceman 1883.35 He died 1885 Sheffield, aged 4036 Annie Eliza remarried 1887 Sheffield.37 Children:
    1. Thomas b 1881 Sheffield,38 d 1882 Sheffield, aged 139
    2. John b 25 Apr 1883 12 Handley St, Brightside Bierlow, Sheffield, Yorkshire.40+Census records for John:    Read more
      Died ?unm 22 Nov 1931, 17 Lyons Rd, Sheffield, aged 47, Engineer’s Fitter, of ‘natural causes, viz. chronic interstital nephritis and cerebral haemorrhage’, certificate received from Sheffield City Coroner, inquest held 24 Nov 1931.41
    3. ?Cecilia b 1885 Sheffield,42 d 1886 Sheffield.43
  3. Thomas b 1847 Pontypool.44 In 1871 he was running a Beerhouse in Sheffield.45 Not treced in the GRO thereafter or in the 1881 census.
  4. William b and d 1850 Pontypool.46
  5. Cecilia b 1852 Pontypool.47 Died Knaresborough, Yorkshire 1932 aged 75.48+Census records for Cecilia:    Read more
  6. William b 1852 Pontypool49 Probably died Stockton 1875, aged 22.50 It is possible that he died 10 Mar 1913 in the Workhouse Infirmary, Barnet, aged 59, ie b c 1854, a Bricklayer,51 but that William was most likely son of Edward, Bricklayer, and Margaret NOTARI of London , b 1857.

4. James 1825-1907 and Ann GRIFFITHS

2nd son of Thomas and Cicillia WATKINS, James bap 1825. Occupation: Baller in all known certificates from 184752 to 1858;53 Mill Furnaceman 1864, 1870;54 Ironworker 1897 and 1907.55 Married 21 May 1847 Ann GRIFFITHS at the Particular Baptist Tabernacle, Trevethin, he a Bachelor, she a Spinster signing with an ‘X’, both of full age residing Pontnewynidd.56 He signed with an ‘X’ in 1858,57 and she in 1870.58 To County Durham by 1864.59 Died 1907 Stockton aged 81.60

Census records for James and Ann:    Read more


  1. Thomas b 1849 Pontypool,61 d 13 Feb 1850 Pontnewynidd Trevethin of hydrocephalus 1 week, aged 11 months.62
  2. John b 1850—no GRO record. Unmarried in parents’ home 1891 and 1901. Probably died 25 Feb 1941 at 50 Portrack Lane, Stockton on Tees, of senile decay, aged 90, General Labourer, residing 15 Egglestone Terrace, informant niece C A WILKINSON of same address.63
  3. Leah b 28 Sep 1853 Pontnewynidd Trevethin, informant Hannah GRIFFITHS Occupier—?Ann’s mother.64 The 1881 census recorded her as a Servant in the Full Moon Inn, 24 High St, Trevethin, aged 27, b Trevethin Monmouth, Niece of the Head, Sarah POWELL, Widow, aged 46, b Malpas, Monmouth. Leah married 1889 Pontypool.65
  4. Isaac b 3 May 1856 Abersychan Trevethin, informant Hannah GRIFFITHS Occupier—?Ann’s mother.66 Died Feb 1869 Conyers Street, Hartlepool, Durham, of abcess 10 months, aged 12.67 By coincidence another Isaac was born in Hartlepool in May the next year—a distant relative?
  5. Thomas b 4 Dec 1858 Pontnewynidd Trevethin.68. Married 12 Jun 1897 Mary Elizabeth WILLIAMS in the Parish Church of Middlesbrough St Paul, he a Bachelor, Ironworker, aged 30—actually 38—she a Spinster, 28, signed with an ‘X’, both residing 170 Marsh Rd.69
    Census records for Thomas and Mary Elizabeth:    Read more

    1. ?David, b 1899 Stockton, Durham;70 d 1900 Stockton, Durham.71)
    2. Margaret Ann, b 29 Aug 1903, Stockton Durham;72 d unm 26 Jan 1978 at 11 Kendal Rd, Stockton on Tees, Cleveland, aged 75, will pr Newcastle 6 Mar 1978, estate valued at £7,520 (LPR).
    3. James, b 1906 Stockton Durham;73 ?Married … GRIFFITHS Durham E 1940.74 James died 27 Jun 1968 at 11 Kendal Rd, Stockton on Tees, Teesside, aged 62;75 will pr Durham 6 Feb 1969, estate valued at £12,080 (LPR). 1 dau, 1 son.
    4. Thomas, b 1908 Stockton Durham;76 died 1939 Durham SE, aged 31;77 No GRO record of a marriage.
  6. David, b 21 Oct 1864 Havelock St, Darlington, Co Durham, surname Brockatt;78 died 1868 Hartlepool Durham, aged 4.79
  7. Cealiea/Cecilia, b c 1868—no GRO record. Died 15 Jun 1907 at 34 Cecil St, Stockton on Tees, aged 39, Spinster, of diabetes mellitis, 2 years, coma.80
  8. Frederick b 9 Aug 1870 Conyers St, W Hartlepool.81 ?1891 census as Fred J. Informant of sister Cealiea’s death 1907. Single in 1911 aged 40.82
  9. 2 other children died before 1911.83

5. Other records

1. Ann died of smallpox 14 Apr 1842 Mold, Flint, c 11 m W of Chester, aged 784 daughter of William b c 1788 Bedfordshire. Mother Elizabeth d 1840 Sadlow, Gloucestershire.85

2. Mary BROCKET died 1918 Chepstow, Monmouth, aged 67, ie b c 1851.86 She was Mary DOWNING who married George, eldest son of Joseph 1812-79 of Bromham and Sarah CORRALL. They had a son Thomas William, who was born 31 Mar 1875 Lydney, Chepstow, Gloucestershire87 and died there 22 Aug 1940. The London Probate Register records Mary as Widow, of Lydney, Gloucs, of 3 Bathhurst Park Rd, Lydney. Gloucs, d 3 Dec 1918, Administration Chichester 8 Jan to Thomas William Brocket, Template Worker, effects valued at £210 15s.

Page Last Updated: April 5, 2020


For full bibliographical details please see the sections Publications or Glossary.


[1] NG 1868

[2] NG 1868

[3] 1851 census

[4] IGI—c 5 m NE of Brecon in Powys, c 24 m NW of Pontypool

[5] Marriage certificate of son

[6] Marriage certificate of daughter

[7] Marriage certificate of son

[8] Census

[9] Death certificate

[10] Marriage certificate of son

[11] Death certificate

[12] GRO qtr 1

[13] GRO qtr 1

[14] GRO qtr 3

[15] Marriage certificate

[16] GRO qtr 3

[17] GRO qtr 2

[18] Death certificate

[19] IGI

[20] Not in GRO

[21] Information kindly suppliied by Hugh Sockett 2005 from a family Bible.

[22] Marriage certificate

[23] GRO qtr 2

[24] Marriage certificate

[25] Marriage certificate

[26] Death certificate

[27] GRO qtr 1

[28] Birth certificate of son

[29] Marriage certificate

[30] Birth certificate of son

[31] GRO qtr 1

[32] GRO qtr 3

[33] GRO qtr 1

[34] GRO qtr 2

[35] Birth certificate of son

[36] GRO qtr 4

[37] GRO qtr 3

[38] GRO qtr 2

[39] GRO qtr 2

[40] Birth certificate

[41] Death certificate

[42] GRO qtr 4

[43] GRO qtr 1

[44] GRO qtr 3

[45] Census

[46] GRO qtr 1

[47] GRO qtr 1 as Cecelia

[48] GRO qtr 2

[49] GRO qtr 1

[50] GRO qtr 2

[51] Death certificate

[52] Marriage certificate

[53] Birth certificate of son

[54] Birth certificate of sons

[55] Marriage certificate of son; death certificate of daughter

[56] Marriage certificate

[57] Birth certificate of son

[58] Birth certificate

[59] Birth certificate of son

[60] GRO qtr 3

[61] GRO qtr 2

[62] Death certificate

[63] Death certificate

[64] Birth certificate

[65] GRO qtr 2

[66] Birth certificate

[67] GRO qtr 1

[68] Birth certificate

[69] Marriage certificate

[70] GRO qtr 4

[71] GRO qtr 3

[72] GRO qtr 3

[73] GRO qtr 1

[74] GRO qtr 3

[75] GRO qtr 2

[76] GRO qtr 3

[77] GRO qtr 1

[78] Birth certificate

[79] GRO qtr 4

[80] Death certificate

[81] Birth certificate

[82] Census

[83] Census

[84] Death certificate

[85] GRO qtr 2

[86] GRO qtr 4

[87] Birth certificate

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