Francis Britnell and Susannah Connish

Francis Britnell (sometimes Brudenell) was born in 1631 in Chinnor, Oxfordshire, England to parents Bennett Britnell (1594-1634) and Frances Toovye (1604-1660).

St Andrews Chinnor Oxfordshire

Francis was baptised on 11 September 1631 at St Andrews, Chinnor.

(The baptism entry is actually for a daughter Francisca  but is written in latin, filia (dau) when perhaps it should have been filius (son). The birth of Francis as the eldest son is confirmed by his father’s will. 

Francis was one of six children born to his father Bennett. Bennett married three times.

Chinnor, is a village and a parish in Oxfordshire. The village stands on the verge of the county, under the Chiltern Hills, five miles south east of Thame. The population in 1894 was 1247.

Francis Britnell, married Susannah Connish, around 1655 most likely in Chinnor.
(I haven’t been able to find their marriage entry).

Susannah Connish was born in 1639 and her father’s name of Robert only was listed on her baptism record. Susannah was baptised on 23 May 1639 at St Andrews, in Chinnor.

She was only 17 years old when her first child was born in December 1656.

Francis and Susannah had the following children –

  1. Elizabeth b 1656 Chinnor, marr John Dossett
  2. Bennett b 1660 & d 1660 Chinnor – 2 months
  3. Francis b 1663 & d 1719 Chinnor, marr Ann Deane & Mary Oxlade – 6 children
  4. Thomas b 1664 Chinnor d 1740 Crowell, marr Ann Harding, 4 children
  5. Bennett b 1667 Chinnor
  6. William b 1670 Chinnor

English Holly tree

Francis was an agricultural labourer living in Spriggs Alley in Chinnor, Oxfordshire.  Sprigg’s Alley, 750ft up on the Southern Boundary, is a Hill Settlement.

It is more often called Sprigg’s Holly locally from the many ancient holly trees, well over a 100-yrs old.

Francis wrote his will on 1 May 1718 at Chinnor.  He left the following bequests –

  • my land and cottage at Spriggs Alley Chinnor and the adjoining Close of arable land and all the houses, barns, stables, orchards, gardens etc to Susannah Brudnell my dear and loving wife for life.
  • then to grandson Francis (son of  Francis)and he pays granddaughter Susannah £10.
  •  my sons Francis and Thomas 10s each
  • my granddaughter Eliz (daughter of  Francis) six napkins and one pewter platter.
  • my grandson Thomas Brudnell  one brass pottage pot and pewter platter and the little trunk.
  • my granddaughter Susannah Brudnell the feather bed whereon she now lies, two bolsters, one pillow and all other furniture to it except the bedstead, and the great brass pottage pot, the brass mortar and pestle and table standing in the chamber and table-cloth to it and six napkins.
  • my grandson Thomas Brudnell  one coverlet.
  • my granddaughter Susannah Brudnell six napkins.
  • my grandson James Dossett two pewter platters.
  • my granddaughter Mary Dossett two pewter platters and the middle kettle.
  • my granddaughter Ann Brudnell 50s one truckle bed, one flock bed, one bolster, one pillow, one blanket.
  • my granddaughter Mary Brudnell my little silver spoon.
  • my grandson Richard Dossett 1s.
  • my granddaughter Ann Bruttnell one pewter platter.
  • All the residue I give to my grandson Francis Brudnell and ordain him sole Executor.

Witnesses to the will which was probated on 5 June 1721 were Zachariah Seaman, Judith Cox , and William Walker Sr.

Chinnor churchyard

An Inventory of the goods of Francis Brudnell Sr of Spriggs Alley Chinnor, labourer was  taken on 1 Mar 1720/21 by Thomas Clarke & William Walker and valued at £17 18s.

Francis Britnell / Brudnell died in December 1719 aged 87 years at Chinnor. He was buried at St Andrews in Chinnor on 22 December 1719.

His wife Susannah died less than six months later in June 1720 aged 81 years. She was buried at Chinnor also on 20 June 1720.