Charles Jeggo - Gamekeeper at Lilleshall Hall

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Lilleshall Hall

The land on which the present Hall and its gardens stand was originally part of the Lilleshall Abbey Estate. The Abbey was surrendered to Henry VIII during the dissolution of the monasteries and purchased by James Leveson.  The original hall, situated in the village of Lilleshall, was completed in 1750 for Sir William Leveson-Gower and his wife Lady Jane Granville, but was considered too modest for their son and heir, Lord Gower, George Granville Leveson-Gower, after his marriage to Countess Elizabeth of Sutherland in 1785.  It was upon Elizabeth's instructions that her husband (then the Marquis of Stafford, later to become the first Duke of Sutherland in 1833, the year of his death) commanded a new Shropshire seat to be built.  The new Lilleshall Hall was completed in 1829.

In addition to Lilleshall Hall the Sutherland family owned Trentham Hall, a London home in Berkeley Square, Stafford House and Dunrobin Castle in Sutherland, Scotland.  The 2nd Duke often spent Easter at Lilleshall when he would invite friends to shoot and to play billiards, tennis and polo.  The 4th Duke sold the London home after succeeding his father in 1892 and centred family life principally at Dunrobin and Stafford.  Lilleshall Hall continued to be occupied by the family at holiday times.  (This highly condensed history has been abstracted from "Lilleshall Hall", a handout of the National Sports Centre, which now occupies the Hall.  The handout does not name its author, and carries no date, but was written between November 2000 and November 2003.)

Duke of Sutherland's Estate Records

Lilleshall is in Shropshire, so some records are in the Shropshire Records & Research Centre (ShrRRC) in Shrewsbury.  However, the Duke also owned Trentham Hall, a few miles away in Staffordshire, and many Lilleshall Estate records were transferred there, so they finished up in the Staffordshire Record Office (StsRO) in Stafford.

Enough can be gleaned from the estate records to provide a sketch of the everyday life of a gamekeeper on a large estate.

Head Gamekeeper's Book  -  ShrRRC Catalogue No: 673/2/1/146

This is a bound volume, approximately foolscap size (20  by 33 cm) by 5cm thick, each page a printed form.  (Images of two pages - 430 KB)  The following entries transcribed from it have been selected to give an impression of the variety of events and transactions involving game and gamekeepers, week by week.
 
Week ending: By whom killed Game killed How disposed of Game disposed of
February 19th, 1898
(first entry in book)
Charles Jeggo & keepers 12 Rabbits Lilleshall House 12 Rabbits
August 27th, 1898 Charles Jeggo & keepers 1 Hare
451 Rabbits
Sold to Mr. Jones
Lilleshall House
Given to sick people
Used as food for foxes & pheasants
84 Rabbits
1 Hare & 20 Rabbits
7 Rabbits
340 Rabbits
October 1st, 1898 His Grace The Duke of Westminster
HRH Prince Adolphus of Teck
HRH Prince Francis of Teck
Lord Chesham
Lord Bradford
Lord Newport
151 Partridges
9 Hares
2 Rabbits
Lilleshall House
Given away in Newport
Given to Tenants
Given to beater
10 Partridges
18 Partridges
123 Partridges and 9 Hares
2 Rabbits
October 22nd, 1898 Charles Jeggo & keepers 6 Partridges
1 Hare
Given to Tenants 6 Partridges and 1 Hare
October 29th, 1898 Charles Jeggo & keepers 12 Pheasants
3 Hares
13 Rabbits
Given to Tenants
Sold to Mr. Jones
Given to sick people
Given to five labourers,
  two each as wakes rabbits
3 Hares
12 Pheasants
3 Rabbits

10 Rabbits

November 5th, 1898 Charles Jeggo & keepers 2 Pheasants
16 Rabbits
Sold to Mr. Jones
Given to eight garden men,
  two each as wakes rabbits
2 Pheasants

16 Rabbits

November 12th, 1898 Charles Jeggo & keepers 20 Rabbits Given to ten labourers,
  two each as wakes rabbits

20 Rabbits
November 26th, 1898 His Grace The Duke of Westminster
HRH Prince of Teck
Colonel Cotes
Henry Tollemache, Esq
Colonel Bridgeman
Colonel Slaney
Captain Peel
Lord Lichfield
Lord Henry Grosvenor
1260 Pheasants
20 Partridges
107 Hares
42 Rabbits
5 Woodcocks

(Picked up:
65 Pheasants
2 Partridges
2 Hares)


Lilleshall House

Given to three beaters,
  two rabbits each

37 Pheasants, 8 Partridges,
7 Hares, 6 Rabbits and
2 Woodcocks

6 Rabbits

December 3rd, 1898 Charles Jeggo & keepers 24 Rabbits Given to Tenants

Given to Tenants on Big Wood side
Sold to Mr. Jones
Badly shot, unfit for use
Sold to Mrs. Williams
Given to women in the House and Lodges

78 Pheasants, 14 Partridges,
83 Hares and 3 Woodcocks.
22 Hares
1156 Pheasants
3 Pheasants and 1 Hare
24 Rabbits
30 Rabbits
December 10th, 1898 Charles Jeggo & keepers 176 Rabbits Sold to Mrs. Williams
Given to 32 labourers,
  two each as wakes rabbits
Sold to Mr. Jones
72 Rabbits

64 Rabbits
40 Rabbits

December 17th, 1898 Charles Jeggo & keepers 44 Rabbits Given to twelve woodmen,
  two each as wakes rabbits
Given to roadmen and drainers

24 Rabbits
20 Rabbits
January 14th 1899 Charles Jeggo & keepers 38 Pheasants
64 Rabbits
Sent to Trentham
Sold to Mrs. Williams
38 Pheasants
64 Rabbits
February 10th, 1900
(last entry under Charles Jeggo)
Charles Jeggo 4 Rabbits Lilleshall House 4 Rabbits

A bundle of General Estate Records, StsRO Catalogue No: D593/N/3/6/10

Lilleshall Game List, November 1894

There were one or two game lists like this every year, showing who received game following a big shoot.  This particular list details the distribution of 1290 pheasants, 210 hares and 446 rabbits.  (Of these, 848 pheasants and 257 rabbits were sold.)  "In addition to the above, 3 partridge and 22 woodcock were killed and used in Lilleshall House.  303 pheasants still to be disposed of."

The list starts with people of standing, such as Capt. Stamer, Lord Rosslyn, Lt. Col. Davidson, a few 'Hon's, a couple of knights, a couple of ladies, a few esquires, a Dr and a Rev'd, and Mrs. de Vere Beauclerk;  these people typically received three pheasants.  Most lived in London, a few were local.  There was also a Madame Louise in London.  Some further entries, the more interesting ones, follow:
Name & Residence Pheasants Hares Rabbits Name & Residence Pheasants Hares Rabbits
Mr. Evans, Postmaster, Newport 2 Mr. Bradley, Post Office, Newport 1 2
Mr. Taylor, Stationmaster, Newport 3 Mr. Wilkinson, Railway Station, Newport 2
Serjeant Humphries, Newport 2 Supt. Edwards, Wellington 2
P.C. Kerr, Muxton 1
Mr. Jupp, Stationmaster, Euston 3 Mr. Allan, Stationmaster, Rugby 3
Mr. Humphries, Stationmaster, Crewe 3 Mr. Glenister, Stationmaster, Stafford 3
Mr. Hand, Stationmaster, Stoke-on-Trent 3 Mr. Jones, Stationmaster, Donnington 2
Mrs. Robinson, Stafford House 2 3 others at Stafford House 2 each
Mr. Glover, Valet 2 Mrs. Macpherson, Lilleshall House 3
Revd B. Blapland, Lilleshall 2 Revd. Thos. Regan, Donnington 2
Mr. Hamilton, Lilleshall Office 3 2 others at Lilleshall Office 3 each
Mr. Vickers, Surveyor 4 Mr. Hull, Woodranger 3
Mr. Price, Home Farm 3 Mr. Adams, The Gardens 3
Chas. Jeggo, Head Keeper 2 3 Under Keepers 2 each
Benjn Allen, Usher 1 2 Mary Price, Dairy maid 1 2
Eight valets 8 16 Four kitchen women 8
Three waiters 2 6 Four footmen 8
Forty-four beaters 88 Sent to Trentham Hall 160
There then follows a long list of local people receiving typically 2 pheasants and 1 to 10 hares each.  They may well be tenants, because the next entry is 'Sundry small holders, 39 hares'.  Finally:  Lodgekeepers, &c, 10 rabbits;  Sick people, 9 rabbits.

1895 Names and Acreage of Tenants & small holders to whom Hares have been sent

Lilleshall Estate.  Apportionment among Tenantry of Hares killed by His Grace's shooting party in November 1895.
Tenants Acres Hares Tenants Acres Hares
Lilleshall 19 ~1800 48 Abbey St John 4, including
Jeggo Charles
~700
7
27
1
Donnington 15 ~1300 34 Muxton 10 ~370 16
Sherriff Hales 21 ~1500 58 Heathill 9 ~500 21
Pave Lane 2 17 2

Lilleshall Game Lists, Novr 1895 and 1897 - Mr. Jeggo, Game Keeper, Lilleshall, 3 Pheasants.

Hares, 1896 and 1897 - Abbey St John, Jeggo Charles, 7 acres, 1 hare and 2 hares.

Lilleshall Game List 1898 (i)
Tenantry: Jeggo Charles, Abbey St John, 1 hare
Servants: Jeggo Charles, The Abbey, 3 Pheasants.

Lilleshall Game List 1898 (ii)
Tenantry: Jeggo Charles, Abbey St John, 3 Pheasants.

Lilleshall Game List 1898 - His Grace's List
Mr. Jeggo, Head Keeper, 3 Pheasants.

Lilleshall Game List 1899 - Her Grace's List
Mr. Jeggo, Keeper, 3 Pheasants
Tenantry: Jeggo Charles, Abbey St John, 1 hare

Lilleshall Game List 1900 - His Grace's List
Chas Jeggo, late keeper, 3 Pheasants
Tenantry: Jeggo Charles, Lilleshall, 1 hare  (note that Charles has now retired and moved into Lilleshall village)

Lilleshall Estate - Total head of Game killed for Season 1898-9

The estate was divided into two beats, Jeggo's and Bond's.
Pheasants Partridge Hares Rabbits Woodcock Var Total
C. Jeggo's beat 1723 227 212 1215 10 25 3412
H. Bond's beat 1380 267 168 928 17 2760
3103 494 380 2143 27 25 6172

Lilleshall Estate - Abstract of Game Account for Season 1898-9

What did it all cost?  (Reminder: there were 12 pence (d) in a shilling, 20 shillings in a pound.)
Jeggo Bond Total
£ s d £ s d £ s d
Wages of Keepers, Watchers, &c 276 2 10 298 14 6 574 17 4
Game Feed 140 11 10 171 8 3 312 0 1
Keep of Dogs & Ponies 77 4 0 60 16 9 138 0 9
Straw for Kennels 6 14 0 - - - 6 14 0
Vermin Killed 1 9 4 - 19 10 2 9 2
Ammunition 11 12 10 12 7 0 23 19 10
Pheasant Eggs purchased - - - 29 17 3 29 17 3
Hens for hatching eggs 26 0 0 28 2 6 54 2 6
Rent of fields for rearing &c. 13 14 6 25 13 8 39 8 2
Rates on Sporting &c. 27 6 1 14 2 8 41 8 9
Licenses 10 10 0 7 15 0 18 5 0
Team Work 23 14 8 32 14 8 56 9 4
Sundries 33 18 11 51 12 11 85 11 10
Coals.  Allowed as part of Wages
For rearing purposes only 
11
-
3
-
9
-
-
2
-
3
-
3
13 7 0
Grand total 1396 11 0
£ s d
Value of game supplied to His Grace the
Duke of Sutherland's Household Account
40 5 0
Value of game supplied to His Grace the
Duke of Westminster's Household Account
20 13 9
Value of game given to Tenantry & Servants 126 16 3
Game sold 218 16 0
Rabbits sold 38 15 10
Hens sold 24 0 0
Total
469 6 10
Balance being nett cost of Game 927 4 2
Grand total
1396 11 0
There is also a memo detailing supplies of game to households,
friends, tenantry, servants, &c, "for which no cash has passed",
the basis for the values above. Valuations were: a pheasant, 2/6;
a hare, 3/-; a partridge, 1/3; a woodcock, 1/6; and a rabbit, 9d.

Further enlightenment can be found in the detailed accounts for the same year.  For example, the licenses for Charles Jeggo's beat were: 3 keepers @ 15/- (15 shillings), 1 pony cart @ 15/-, 12 dogs @ 7/6, 2 guns @ 10/- and 1 game license @ £2.  Charles was paid for the keep of 2 dogs @ 2/6 each per week and 8 dogs @ 1/6 per week each.  He was also paid £20 per year for the keep of a pony, and received coals worth £9.7.7d.  The £23.14.8d for 'Team Work' was paid to The Home Farm for haulage - 'Game feed, coals, coops, barley from field to woods; also working, sowing and cutting barley on field set apart for straw crop for game - 44½ days @ 10/8'.  'Vermin Killed' included £1.0.9d paid to Charles for killing rats.  'Rates on Sporting &c' were monies paid to 'Sundry tenants, In repayment to them of poor rates charged on sporting rights reserved to His Grace'.

There is also in the bundle a Lilleshall Game memo showing comparative costs of wages, feed and general expenses for the years 1887, 1888 and 1889.  Much of it adds little to what is in the table above, but then follow details of wages.
Wages &c of head keeper
£ s
Yearly Wages 90 0
Allowance for keep of horse 30 0
ditto for soap & candles 2 8
Expenses - average for 3 yrs 20 3
Keep of dogs (6) 33 16
176 7
He also had coals (about £10)
house rent free (valued at £10)
& 1 quart new milk a day - £4.11.3d.
Wages &c of underkeepers
Per annum Keep of 1 dog
£ s d £ s d
Jeggo 56 0 2 6 10 0
White Jas 52 0 0 6 10 0
White Chas 52 0 0 6 10 0
Dogman 20 16 0 - - -
180 16 2 19 10 0
Each underkeeper had a cottage rent free

In 1893 Charles Jeggo's annual wages were still £56.0.2d.

Lilleshall Accounts 1900, StsRO Catalogue No: D593/F/5/4/40

On page 33, 'Personal Account' includes:
Charles Jeggo Keep of four French bulldog pups for her Grace £8.8.0d
Charles Jeggo Showing same at Birmingham £2.15.0d

On page 80, 'Expenditure' includes entries for Charles Jeggo's gratuity from February 8th onwards at a rate of £50 per year. (This would appear to be his pension.)

On page 107, 'Game per C. Jeggo' includes, on February 28th, various allowances paid to Charles Jeggo to "Feby 9/00 date when his services as Gamekeeper ceased".

There is a family story about Charles, told to us by John Golden Jeggo, as follows.  At the end of a long day's shooting by a large party, the Duke asked Jeggo how many birds had been shot.  "998, Your Grace."  "Then you'd better go out and shoot two more!"  So he did.