I found another delightful old photograph (emailed to us once again by Leslie McDonald). Phil is quite sure it was taken a couple of years before he was born which would make it ca 1927. It is Phil's paternal grandparents Charles and Mary. It is not in very good condition but considering when it was taken and the type of camera available then I think it amazing it is still as good as it is.
The photo was taken outside the the front door of the approximately 200 year old cottage in which they lived. Charles was born in 1858 in Coventry and Mary in 1867 in Meriden (the village where this cottage is situated and where Phil and his parents eventually lived with his grandparents).
Charles had been widowed in the latter part of 1888 when his wife Elizabeth had died at the tender age of 23. I do not have a copy of her death certificate but tend to think she may have died in child birth as a son was born at that time. He (Robert Walter) appears to have only lived for about 6 months or less. Charles was left with two sons Francis (aged 5) and Clarence (aged 2).
Charles married Mary in Coventry in 1894 and they had three sons and a daughter. One son (Harold) died when he was one year of age. The other sons were Charles (father of Mollie) and Cyril (Phil's dad) and the daughter who was named Elsie.
Charles' father, George, had died in 1881 when he was only 35 and left his widow, Esther, with five young children to bring up. We know that George had been in the 10th Royal Hussars as in 1861 he was living in the Army Barracks in Ipswich, Suffolk while his wife and son Charles were living in private accommodation in Ipswich.
When aged 13, Charles was one of 609 people at the Royal Military Asylum for Children of Soldiers of the Regular Army (this would be because of the death of his father). The Afghan War took place between 1878 and 1882 and Charles was stationed there with his regiment (the 10th Hussars). He was wounded (a spear wound to his groin). After being hospitalised in India Charles returned home and was discharged as "wounded". When young he had been a trumpeter in the army. In later years he was employed by the post office until he had to retire on medical grounds suffering with 'writer's cramp' (what we today would possible recognize as RSI). You will have seen later photos of Phil's grandparents having tea on VE day in 1945.