Discovering Elwes family legacy at North Lincolnshire Museum

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Discover what impact the Elwes family had on North Lincolnshire in North Lincolnshire Museum’s brand new exhibition opening on January 13.

The exhibition will run until 14 June 2015 and will look at the history of the Elwes family, who were well-known for being landowners, bishops and singers.

The Elwes family had a huge impact on North Lincolnshire - especially Brigg, Wrawby and Roxby.

The exhibition will take you through the Elwes family timeline. Learn about important family members such as Gervase Elwes, the famous singer and the legacy he left. Discover what it was like to have Cary Elwes as your landlord and find out what impact Valentine Elwes’ conversion to Catholicism had on Brigg.

In 1674 Jeremy Elwes bought the Tyrwhitt estates of Wrawby, Brigg and Bigby for £2,300. At this time they consisted of nothing more than a few houses. His grandson, Cary Elwes began the development of these estates into the towns and villages we know today.

The Elwes family also owned land at Risby, Roxby, in parts of Yorkshire and Billing Hall in Northamptonshire. Many houses in these villages are still owned by the Elwes family who live at Elsham Hall.

In 1865 Valentine Cary Elwes married his second wife Alice Ward. The couple moved into the Manor House in Brigg in 1869. They had three children: Gervase, Dudley and Maud. Valentine played a big part in the local community.

In 1874 the family visited Nice in France, where they were converted to Catholic faith. At this time there wasn’t a Catholic church in Brigg for the family to worship in. So in 1875 Valentine converted the old Coach House next to Manor House into a chapel, which was known as St. Mary’s.

In the early 1900s Gervase and his wife Winefride started an annual Musical Competition Festival in Brigg. Gervase also regularly held music workshops in London and at Billing Hall. Musicians stayed with the family for up to a week at a time and put on concerts and productions.

The exhibition will give a real insight into the lives of the Elwes family and how they made a difference to North Lincolnshire. Pop along to the Museum in January and take a step back in time and discover the history of the interesting Elwes family.

For more information about the exhibition contact North Lincolnshire Museum on 01724 843533 or email museum@northlincs.gov.uk.

Cllr John Briggs, cabinet member for asset management, culture and housing, said:

“The Elwes family were very prominent in North Lincolnshire for many, many years and their influences in the local area can still be seen today. It is a fantastic exhibition that takes you through the Elwes family history, right from the very beginning. They were all involved in many different things from acting and singing to owning land and politics.

“Go along to this fantastic exhibition in the New Year and learn a bit more about North Lincolnshire’s history.”