CFHS code : HT59
Parish : Holy Trinity
Inscription : In Loving Memory of JOHN EDMUND LEEDS d 18 Aug 1920 aged 67 also ROBERT WALTER LEEDS son of the above killed in action in France 28 Apr 1918 aged 27 also MARY ANN LEEDS wife of the above d 5 Aug 1931 age 72 also their son JOHN EDMUND LEEDS d 15 Aug 1950 age 62
Monument : Headstone/Kerb stones/Flowerholder
Above information from Cambridge Family History Society Survey
Lat Lon : 52.201703, 0.13827664 – click here for location
Elaborately carved headstone with kerb stones, in the parish area of Holy Trinity, located near the south-east corner of the cemetery, against the east boundary wall.
‘In loving memory of John Edmund Leeds,
who died Aug 18th 1920 aged 67 years’
‘Also Robert Walter Leeds son of the above
killed in action in France April 28th 1918 aged 27 years’
“Gone but not forgotten”
‘Also Mary Ann Leeds beloved wife of the above
who died Aug 5th 1931 aged 72 years’
‘Also their son John Edmund Leeds
who died Aug 15th 1950 aged 62 years.’
Robert Walter Leeds (1890‒1918) – WW1 soldier – see also Life Story page
Robert was born on 5 August 1890 at 20 Gold Street, Cambridge. He was the fifth of the eight children of John Edmund Leeds and Mary Ann Leeds (née Rider). He was initially a pupil at East Road Infants’ School, Cambridge but finally left education on 11 September 1903. Robert became a kitchen porter at Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge. He played in the College servants’ football team. Robert also rowed in “The Long” a race in which the servants’ boat raced against the students’ boat. The servants’ boat also included Herbert William Benstead (1895‒1917). The cox was Archibald Fairweather (1887‒1917), another kitchen porter. All three of them were to die in the War along with three other servants from the College.
John Edmund Leeds (1852–1920)
Father of Robert Walter Leeds, John was born on 22 November 1852 in Cambridge. He was the second of five children born to Edmund Leeds and his second wife, Sarah Leeds (née Pope). Edmund brought up his family at 5 Eden Place, Cambridge, 33 Willow Place, and finally 20 Gold Street, Cambridge. He had taken over the studio of James Mazzotti at 8 Bridge Street, Cambridge to whom he may have been related. Edmund’s probable paternal aunt (John’s paternal great aunt), Mary Mazzotti (née Leeds) (c.1800‒61), had married a famous plaster figure maker called Pellegrino Mazzotti (c.1793‒1879). Mazzotti came from Coreglia, Tuscany, Italy. There are examples of Mazzotti’s work at Norwich Castle Museum, Wisbech and Fenland Museum, and the National Portrait Gallery, London. Edmund also worked as a figure maker. When he died the family remained at 20 Gold Street. The head of the household was then John’s paternal aunt, Ann Leeds, before the house passed to John himself.
John was employed as a fruiterer’s porter, a bricklayer and then he was employed by the Great Eastern Railway, firstly, as a railway engine arch builder and then as a porter. He married Mary Ann Rider on 13 February 1882 at the Register Office, St Andrew’s Street, Cambridge. They had eight children: Charles Edward (1881‒1973); George Frederick (1884‒1942); Annie Priscilla (1886‒1924); John Edmund Leeds (1888‒1950); Robert Walter Leeds (1890‒1918); Clara Charlotte (1893‒1963); Florence Mabel (1896‒1978); and Albert Edward (1899‒1979). John died on 18 August 1920 in Ely, Cambridgeshire.
Mary Ann Leeds (née Rider) (1858‒1931)
Mother of Robert Walter Leeds, Mary was born in 1858 in Little Chesterford, Essex. She was one of at least nine children born to Benjamin Rider and Rebecca Rider (née Webb). Before her marriage Mary worked as a domestic servant in Hackney, London. She married John Edmund Leeds in 1882 in Cambridge. They had eight children: Charles Edward (1881‒1973); George Frederick (1884‒1942); Annie Priscilla (1886‒1924); John Edmund Leeds (1888‒1950); Robert Walter Leeds (1890‒1918); Clara Charlotte (1893‒1963); Florence Mabel (1896‒1978); and Albert Edward (1899‒1979). Mary died on 5 August 1931 in Cambridge.
John Edmund Leeds (1888‒1950)
Older brother of Robert Walter Leeds, John was born on 20 April 1888 in Cambridge. He was the fourth of the eight children of John Edmund Leeds senior and Mary Ann Leeds (née Rider). John became a butcher. He died on 5 August 1950 in Cambridge.
Florence Mabel Leeds (1896‒1978)
Sister of Robert Walter Leeds, Florence was born on 4 August 1896 in Cambridge. She was the seventh of the eight children of John Edmund Leeds and Mary Ann Leeds (née Rider). Florence worked as a seamstress at King’s College, Cambridge. She died on 23 January 1978 in Cambridge. Her ashes were placed in this family grave.
Albert Edward Leeds (1899‒1979)
Younger brother of Robert Walter Leeds, Albert was born on 22 February 1899 at 20 Gold Street, Cambridge. He was known as Bert. Bert was the youngest of the eight children of John Edmund Leeds and Mary Ann Leeds (née Rider). Like his elder brother, Bert was a rower and belonged to the Albert Institute boat club. During the War Bert was captured and became a prisoner of war just two weeks before his brother, Robert, was killed. Bert married Jessie Edith Sotham on 18 December 1930 in Cambridge. They had two sons: John Edmund S. (1931‒1987); and Robert M. (1939-). Bert died on 1 August 1979 in Cherry Hinton, Cambridge. His ashes were placed in this family grave.
Jessie Edith Leeds (née Sotham) (1904‒1972)
Jessie was born on 18 December 1904 at 25 Norfolk Street, Cambridge. She was the youngest of two daughters born to Jacob Watson Sotham and Florence Mary Sotham (née Stocker). Her father was a house painter. The family grew up at 24 John Street, Cambridge. She married Albert Edward Leeds on 18 December 1930 in Cambridge. They had two sons: John Edmund S. (1931‒1987); and Robert M. (1939-). Jessie died in 1972 in Cambridge. Her ashes were placed in this family grave.
War Graves Photographic Project
Census returns for England: 1841, 1851, 1861, 1871, 1881, 1891, 1901, 1911
England & Wales, FreeBMD Birth Index, 1837 – 1915
England & Wales, FreeBMD Marriage Index, 1837 – 1915
England & Wales, FreeBMD Death Index, 1837 – 1915
England & Wales, Death Index, 1916 – 2007
England & Wales, National Probate Calendar (Index of Wills and Administrations), 1858 – 1966
UK, Soldiers Died in the Great War, 1914 – 1919
Caian (XXIV, pp52-54)
Cambridge Independent Press, 20 August 1920
Notebook belonging to Edmund Leeds (abt 1815‒1871)
Communications from Diana Summers
Communications from Robert Leeds and Jo Leeds
By Emma Easterbrook and Ian Bent