CFHS code : PL84

Parish : St Paul

Inscription : Sacred to the Memory of WILLIAM BENTLEY d June 29 1881 aged 58 also of ELIZA BENTLEY d January 19 1892 aged 74 also EDITH JANE BENTLEY daughter of the above d October 3rd 1932 aged 78

Monument : Headstone (broken)

Above information from Cambridge Family History Society Survey

The headstone in December 2021.


This fallen headstone has been covered for many years and the carved inscription has eroded but is still legible. It lies 11 rows east along the south path from the Mackenzie Road entrance and 3 monuments from the south wall. We did not attempt to uncover the entire stone.


Sacred to the Memory of WILLIAM BENTLEY who died June 29 1881 aged 58 years

Also of ELIZA BENTLEY who died January 19 1892 aged 74 years

Also EDITH JANE BENTLEY daughter of the above d October 3rd 1932 aged 78

William Bentley (1823 – 29 June 1881)

William was born in Swaffham Bulbeck, eight miles outside Cambridge. He was the son of gardener William (1797-1879) and  Edith (née Newman) (1796-1874). Their grave is 2 plots to the north of this one but does not appear to have a monument  In 1841/1851 he was living with his parents at 35a Broad Street and also worked as a gardener.  William married Eliza Morton on 5 July 1853 at St. Paul’s Church and they had at least three children: Edith Jane (1854), Arthur William (1856-1917) and Emma Eliza (1859 – 1860). Emma was 11 months old who she died and was buried 1 row to the west next to her great aunt & uncle..
All the children were baptised at St Paul’s church when the family were living in St Anthony’s Passage (now part of Panton St).

William continued to work as a gardener and in 1871 the family were living at 59 Russell Street with lodger Henry Read.  When the census of 1881 was taken on 3 April he was a patient at Addenbrookes Hospital and died in hospital on 29 June.

Eliza Bentley (née Morton) (3 February 1817 – 19 January 1892)

Eliza was born in Bethnel Green, London and baptised on 2 March at St Leonard’s, Shoreditch. She was the daughter of James and Elizabeth Morton.  In  1841 she was living with her aunt and uncle  Jane and William Flay in Deptford, and by 1851 had moved with them to live on Mill Road.   She married aged 36 years, and after being widowed lived with her daughter Edith at Summerfield (1891). She died there aged 74 years old.

Edith Jane Bentley (1854 – 3 October 1932)

Edith was the only daughter of William and Eliza and was baptised at St Paul’s Church on 4 June 1854.  Aged 17 she was living at Russell Street and was a pupil teacher at St. Paul’s School (1871) and subsequently went to study at Hockerill College.  In December 1873 she won the prize for being the best student teacher of the 5th Year.  The prize was donated by A.A. Vansittart and was worth £5 per year, for two years towards expenses at a Training College. Hockerill  was established in 1852 by the Church of England for the training of women teachers, who like their brothers, “would go out to the schools in the service of humanity, lay priests to the poor, moved by Christian Charity”.  In 1881 she was still at Hockerill College and working as a Governess, teaching other students.

By 1891 she had returned to Cambridge and   was described on the census as an elementary school teacher.  In 1901 she was lodging with Jane and Minnie Tocock at 34 Mill Rod and was described as a ‘certified head school mistress’.  She later lived at 41 Mill Road (1911- at least 1920), 5 Sidgwick Avenue (1930)  and then 5 Summerfield.  Edith died at the Brunswick Nursing Home on Newmarket Road aged 78 years old.



Newspaper archives

CFHS transcript of the burial and grave registers for St Paul’s

by Claire Martinsen

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Edith Jane Bentley; Eliza Bentley; William Bentley
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