Will of Mary Morecraft, spinster, 1922 (proved 1931)

Oxford Probate Registry

BE IT KNOWN that MARY MORECRAFT of The Beeches Winslow in the County of Buckingham Spinster died on the 26th day of December 1930 at Winslow aforesaid

AND BE IT FURTHER KNOWN that the date hereunder written the last will and Testament of the said deceased was proved and registered in the District Probate Registry of His Majesty’s High Court of Justice at Oxford and that administration of all the estate which by law devolves to and vests in the personal representative of the said deceased was granted by the aforesaid Court to MARGARET BEATRICE DOCKRAY of Chelston Bank Torquay in the County of Devon Spinster and THOMAS DANIEL CURTIS of Station Road Winslow aforesaid Cake Merchant the Executors named in the said will dated this 15th day of January 1931

Gross value of Estate £441.10. 10.
Net value of Personal Estate £441. 10. 10.
Extracted by Philip Wood, Solicitor, Winslow.

  I MARY MORECRAFT of The Beeches Winslow in the County of Buckingham Spinster hereby revoke all former Wills and testamentary instruments made by me and declare this to be my last Will
  I APPOINT my Cousin Margaret Beatrice Dockray of Chelston Bank Torquay and Thomas Daniel Curtis of Station Road Winslow to be the Executors of my Will
  I GIVE all my linen china glass books pictures furniture and other household effects To my niece Beatrice Mary Wimberley absolutely
  I DEVISE and BEQUEATH all the residue of my property whatsoever and wheresoever whether real or personal subject to and after payment of my funeral and testamentary expenses and debts To and equally between my said niece Beatrice Mary Wimberley and my niece Dorothy Victoria Morecraft in equal shares absolutely or if only one of them shall survive me then to such survivor absolutely
  IN WITNESS whereof I have hereto set my hand the Eighth day of December One thousand nine hundred and twenty two


  Signed by the said Mary Morecraft as and for her last Will in the presence of us both being present at the same time who at her request in her sight and presence and in the presence of each other have hereunto subscribed our names as witnesses
Hugh J. Ray   )
F. W. Shedd   )       Clerks to Messrs. Small & Barker, Winslow.

On the 15th day of January 1931
Probate of this Will was granted at Oxford.            


Mary Morecraft was the daughter of Thomas Morecraft (d.1859), and the last member of the family in Winslow. She lived at 26 Buckingham Road. See Church Street for more about the family. Her niece Beatrice Wimberley was the daughter of her elder sister Elizabeth. The other niece Dorothy Morecraft was the daughter of Mary's brother William Richard.

1931, Buckingham Advertiser, 3rd January
  Winslow has lost one of the oldest inhabitants in the person of Miss Mary Morecraft, who “passed onwards” on the 26th December, aged 91.
  There are few persons nowadays who have spent most of such a long life in the same place. With the exception of a few years passed near Steeple Claydon, all her time was spent at Winslow, where she was well known and well-beloved.
  Above the average height, of extremely upright, good carriage, small beautiful features, and altogether prepossessing appearance, she was a familiar figure until comparatively recently.
  She was a keen churchwoman, and until age prevented, regularly attended the Services. In February, 1929, the results of a fall in her own house, confined her to her room for the remainder of her life.  But her brain was alert as ever.  She took the greatest interest in the Parish, and the world generally, enjoyed the daily papers, and with a truly marvellous memory would recall events, doings and names of people of long past years, and dates of historical events, so that all who conversed with her were often reminded of things long forgotten, while she would repeat long passages from Shakespeare, Wordsworth, Byron and other writers, with unabated vigour.  The remembrance of her bright philosophic, cheerful spirit, under pain and weariness will never be forgotten by those who knew her best and will always be a lasting uplifting inspiration.
  She was laid to rest on Monday, in the old Churchyard, after a beautiful choral service, conducted by the Vicar, in the Parish Church and attended by friends and neighbours.  Grateful thanks are due to :- Mrs. Dodge, Mr. Clarke and Mrs. Smith, Mrs Greaves, Mr and Mrs Curtis and sister, Nurse Phillips, Mrs. Rose Wilson, who sent wreaths, which were also sent by Beatrice, Arthur and Mary, “In Memoriam” J.A.D. and Margaret B Dockray.
  The funeral arrangements were reverently and efficiently carried out by Mr. Matthews, of Winslow.

Margaret Dockray the cousin and executrix was born in Winslow in 1854. She was the daughter of John Dockray, a railway engineer, and Elizabeth Mayne (presumably the sister of Mary Morecraft's mother). She left Winslow for Devon in 1886. A report in the Bucks Herald (4 Dec) praised the altar cloth she made for the church and the "splendid banner" she made for the Addington Habitation of the Primrose League. For more on T.D. Curtis, the other executor, click here.

Copyright 28 May, 2020