Maude Yarrow

Maude Yarrow (later Maude Barber) was the third of the fifteen children of James Yarrow and his wife Adelaide Bishop of Little Thetford, Cambridgeshire, England.

Maude Barber (née Yarrow), circa 1915. Photo: Andrew Martin
Above: Maude Yarrow, circa 1915. Photo: Andrew Martin.

At the age of 12, she passed an exam and left school, taking work as a fruit picker, a dressmaker, and some shop work, including a branch of Woolworths in nearby Ely.

In between the War years, she became a mother, and then extended this mothering to care for three Second World War evacuees and who remained in contact with her until her death.

She also worked hard as a Railway Porter at nearby Haddenham Railway Station, and appears in the register of the National Union of Railwaymen in 1918 alongside her mother.

After marrying Ernest on April Fool's Day in 1929, the family lived in turn in Wentworth, Wilburton, Haddenham and Witchford. After Ernest's death in 1985, Maude eventually moved into care in Ely in early 2002.

Maude is one of the most well documented members of the Yarrow family, with the exception of perhaps her father's uncle William Yarrow. This is undoubtedly down to her long life, and being a keen letter writer who would write to relations each week.

She was someone without a shortage of stories and fond memories of her childhood and life that spanned three centuries. She lived for 104 happy years, outliving her husband by 19 years.

Life Events


  • 2nd September 1899 at Little Thetford, Cambridgeshire, England.


  • 29th October 1899 at St. George's Church, Little Thetford, Cambridgeshire, England.



  • Pamela Maud Barber (1932-2015) married John Edward Dewey (1931-1991)

Census and Residence

  • 1901: 1yrs, The Vineyards, Little Thetford, Cambridgeshire, England.
  • 1911: 11yrs, Railway Cottages, Wilburton, Cambridgeshire, England.
  • 1939: Main Street, Wentworth, Cambridgeshire, England.
  • 1999: 100yrs, 11 Manor Court, Witchford, Cambridgeshire, England.


  • 1918: Railway Porter at Haddenham Railway Station for Great Eastern Railway (GER)


  • 9th May 2004 at Lily House, Lynn Road, Ely, Cambridgeshire, England, aged 104 years.


  • 25th May 2004 with her husband Ernest, at St. Andrew's Churchyard, Witchford, Cambridgeshire, England.

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