ALDRIDGE FAMILY OF BENSON
Trade directories of 1911 and 1924 record the many businesses of this family, who were "carpenters, cabinet makers, painters, wheelwrights, furniture removers, motor proprietors, drapers and boot and shoe makers."
Click here to read about the Aldridge family
ARTHUR FAMILY OF BENSON
Charles Arthur lived in Benson from 1816 until 1833, when he retired and handed over his coachmaking business to his eldest son, Benjamin. The business moved to premises opposite the Old Red Lion in the High Street, where it continued until 1842, when Benjamin moved to High Street, Wallingford. Three of Benjamin's brothers, including Frederick Arthur, exported their coachbuilding and coachpainting skills to Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.
Click here to read about the Arthur family
COSTAR FAMILY OF BENSON
There were many branches of the Costar (formerly Costard) family established in Benson in the sixteenth to eighteenth centuries, but one particular branch produced some notable businessmen. All of these were descended from Richard Costar, a wheelwright.
Click here for more details about the Costar family, who kept the Crown Inn for several generations.
DINES FAMILY OF BENSON
"Mr W H Dines, who lived at the Old Observatory, Brook Street, Benson, from 1914 until his death in 1927, was a distinguished meteorologist"....................
Read more details here about three members of the Dines family
Read about the unveiling of a Blue Plaque honouring W.H. Dines
Read a Times article about Benson weather
Observatory Close was built on
the site formerly occupied by Observatory House.
LANE FAMILY OF BENSON
Members of the Lane family have lived in Benson since the mid 1700's and several lived and worked in Birmingham Yard. In 1902, they formed the village Fire Brigade. David Lane writes, "During our searches we have unearthed the usual selection of skeletons, illegitimate births, unmarried couples and family feuds but no murders. However the Lane families of Benson appear to conform to the old traditions, they were generally good, law-abiding, citizens............"
Click here for more details about the Lane family
Click here to read David Lane's memories of Benson
Joe and Elizabeth Lane
LITTLEBOY FAMILY OF PRESTON CROWMARSH
The Littleboy family were one of the influential Benson families of the 19th Century, residing mostly in Preston Crowmarsh where they ran the Corn Mill for many years.
In 1884, Isabelle Littleboy was married in Benson to John Henry Derby in what was probably the wedding of the year - a daughter of a well to do local family marrying into a mega rich society family amid a media frenzy..........
Click here to read more
An old photo of Preston Crowmarsh mill
NEWTON FAMILY OF CROWMARSH BATTLE FARM
Dr. Anne Millar writes, "Thomas Newton’s house was raided at 2 a.m. by a mob who demanded that he listen to their grievances."
Click here to read the story of the Newton family.
MANLEY FAMILY OF BENSON AND PRESTON CROWMARSH
One of the the more important residents of Benson in the post war period was R.O.B. Manley, Britain’s first commercial beekeeper, who ran the Chiltern Honey Farms in Preston Crowmarsh, his significance being as the author of three seminal books about apiculture which remain relevant to this day; Robert’s observations on honeybee disease and treatment having been revived recently in the fight against varroa and other modern bee diseases that threaten the very survival of that species.
John Manley joined Chiltern Honey Farms in the early 50’s and together he and Robert developed Manley Pure Foods Ltd, in its heyday a massive private label honey packing company and a significant local employer, all in barns and sheds built in the back garden.