CFHS code : AS346

Parish : All Saints

Inscription : JOHN WAKELING several lines illegible also HARRIETT wife of the above d Feb 27 1901 age 79

Monument : Headstone (fallen and broken)

Above information from Cambridge Family History Society Survey

Wakeling monument July 2017



JOHN WAKELING several lines illegible

Also HARRIETT wife of the above d Feb 27 1901 age 79

From Parish records it has been established that four members of the Wakeling family are buried in this grave.

John Wakeling (1844 – May 1851)

John was the second son of  John and Sarah Wakeling. He died aged 6 years old and was buried on 17 May 1851.

Sarah Wakeling (née Kidd) (1816 – August 1852)

Sarah was born in Wimpole and was baptised there on 3 November 1816. She was the daughter of gamekeeper William Kidd and his wife Jane. Sarah married John Wakeling on 10 January 1838 at St. Michael’s Church.  The couple lived at Park Street (1851) and John worked as an Under Porter at Trinity College.  They had at least seven children: Susannah (1838-1887), William (1841-), Sarah Ann (1843-), John 1844-1851),  Jane (1846-), Henry Herbert (1848-1900) and Emma Marian (1850-1932).  Sarah died aged 36 years old and was buried on 17 August 1852.

John Wakeling (1816 – 27 October 1894)

John was born in Linton and is believed to have been the illigitimate son of Sarah Wakeling, a servant.  After being widowed he married Sarah’s sister Harriett on 8 March 1854 at St. Philip’s Church, Bethnal Green.  At this time it was still illegal to marry your sister-in-law and that is possibly why they chose to marry in London. The law was not changed until 1907.  When John had married Sarah he gave his father’s name as Richard Beard and when he married Harriett he gave the name of Richard Freeman Wakeling.

Harriett and John had at leat five children: Harriett Louisa (1854-1930), Frederick John (1857-1928), Alice Maud (1858-1934), Emily Florence (1860-1925) and Agnes Annie (1862-1945).  The family lived on Histon Road (1861), 19 King Street (1871/1881) and then 45 City Road (1891). John was described as a college porter on census returns from 1861 onwards.  He died at City Road aged 78 years old.

Harriett Wakeling (1820 – April 1901)

Harriett was Sarah’s sister and was baptised in Wimpole on 26 August 1821.  Aged 29 (1851) she was working as a servant for farmer Robert Sparrow in Chesterton before marrying her widowed brother in law.  After she was widowed she went to live at 41 Humberstone Road with her son Frederick and his wife Matilda (1901). Frederick worked as a college cook and Harriett died at Humberstone Road .  She was buried at Mill Road Cemetery on 9 April.

The 1891 census return noted John Wakeling as a widow, and Harriett was named as Harriett Kidd, a single woman who was his sister-in-law. On previous census returns she was noted as his wife, and they had indeed married in 1854.  Perhaps they were worried about falling foul of the law regarding the marriage of in-laws and therefore did not want to declare their marriage.

NB – The inscription of this grave monument must be incorrect with regard to Harriett’s date of death.  She was still alive on  31 March when the 1901 census was taken so cannot have died on 27 February. It will be investigated in due course.



Parish Records

by Claire Martinsen with additional help by Mary Naylor

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

Harriett Wakeling; John Wakeling; John Wakeling; Sarah Wakeling
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