CFHS code : BE17

Parish : St Bene’t

Inscription : Sacred to the Memory of MARY the beloved wife of CHARLES TURNER d Jan 17th 1861 aged 40 also of the grave of CHARLES TURNER d October 28th 1867 aged 50 ELIZABETH HUMBERSTONE d Jan 2 1887 aged 98 groundslab inscription indecipherable

Monument : Headstone/Kerb stones/Ground slab

Above information  amended from Cambridge Family History Society Survey

The headstone in December 2020.


This headstone is 2 rows west of the central path. We have not yet uncovered the ground slab.


Sacred to the Memory of MARY the beloved wife of CHARLES TURNER who departed this life  Jan 17 1861 aged 40

Also of the grave of CHARLES TURNER who departed this life October 28 1867 aged 50

Also of ELIZABETH HUMBERSTONE who died Jan 2 1887 aged 98

groundslab inscription indecipherable

Mary Turner  (née Humberstone) (c.1820 – 17 January  1861)

Mary was the daughter of Elizabeth and was born in Easton Socon, St. Neots. She married Charles Turner in 1841 in Cambridge and the couple had at least eleven children: Henry Robert (1842-1903), Charles (1843-), Mary Ann (1847-),  John (1849-), Eliza (1850-), Matilda (1851-1858), Isabella (1853-), Frederick Willam (1854-), Alfred Gilbert (1855-1914), Helena Mary (1859-1859)  and Alice Mary Maud (1860-1903).  In 1849 Charles took over the running of the  Eagle Hotel on Benet Street, and Mary died there of consumption ‘leaving a large family to lament her loss’.

Charles Turner (1817 – 28 October 1867)

Charles was born in Eynesbury, St. Neots and came to Cambridge to work as a waiter at the Bull Hotel. He worked at the Bull for 9 years before running the Eagle Hotel on Benet Street for 18 years.  It was re-opened under his managment on 1 October 1849 and he took out adverts to announce the ‘hotel has been entirely remodelled and fitted up in a style replete with comfort and convenience…in this establishment will be found handsome coffee and commercial rooms, and several sitting and bedrooms of convenient dimentsions…loose boxes and good stabling within two minutes’ walk of the Hotel’.

Charles also ran a fly (carriage) service from the Hotel, including links to the station – ‘omnibuses meet every train, post horses, carriages and flys of every description’.  He died of cancer at the Eagle Hotel aged 50 years old.  The younger children went to live with their elder siblings -eg one year old Alice Turner went to live with her brother Henry and his family.

Elizabeth Humberstone (1788 – 2 January 1887)

Elizabeth was born in Eaton Socon, St. Neot’s  and was the mother of Mary Turner. In 1851 she was living in St. Neot’s with her son John (1838-) plus two lodgers and was documented as being a pauper.  By 1861 she was living on North Road in St. Neot’s and was documented as being the ‘widow of a postboy’. She later moved to Cambridge to live with her grandson Charles Turner at 5 Park Terrace (1881).  Charles was a solicitor, who had also taken in his younger brother Alfred Gilbert after their parents deaths. Elizabeth died in Cambridge aged 98 years old.

From parish records it is known that two other members of the same family were buried in the St.Benet’s area of the Cemetery, and it is believed that they were buried within this grave.

Hilda Grace Turner (1870 – 15 June 1901)

Hilda was the eldest daughter of Henry and Georgie Turner, granddaughter of  Charles and Mary.  She was born in Saffron Walden and baptised on 30 January 1870 at St.Paul’s Church. She lived at home and died at 4 Brunswick Walk aged 31 years old. Hilda  was buried on 19 June 1901.

Henry Robert Turner (1842 – 24 October 1903)

Henry was the eldest child of Charles and Mary and was baptised on 8 October 1843.  He married Georgina (Georgie) Newman (1845-1894) on 8 December 1868 at St. Paul’s Church and they had at least six children: Hilda Grace, Charles Newman (1871-), Emmeline (1872-1908), Maud (1874-), Horace Edward (1875-1929) and Leslie Henry (1881-1957). Henry worked as a builder before later working as a building inspector and the family lived at 37 Norwich Street (1871), 51 Regent Street (1881) and 13 Downing Street (1891).

Henry was widowed in April 1894 and married again in 1897 to Elizabeth Hester Starling (1867-) and they went to live at Brunswick Walk.  He died at home in 1903 and was buried with his parents.

His widow, Elizabeth,  married John Frederick Blair in 1905.



Newspaper archives

CFHS transcription of Parish burial records

by Claire Martinsen 

[If you have any further information about this family, please contact us at]

Elizabeth Humberstone; Charles Turner; Mary Turner
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