Thursday, 20 April 2017


Thanks to the power of the Internet, and also the kindness of a stranger, I have received this photograph of the headstone on the grave of my 5x great-grandparents, Timothy Lait and Elizabeth Downing.

I had placed a request on the 'Find A Grave' website to ask if someone who lived locally in the small market town of Diss, in Norfolk, could check out the cemetary of St Mary's Church and see if there was an existing headstone in place. My request was answered, and tonight I received this treasure.

Headstone - St Mary's Church, Diss (N.Battley)

The inscription, now rather faded and worn in places, reads:

In memory of Timothy Lait, 
who died July 24th 1809, 
aged 66 years, 
also Elizabeth his wife, 
who died October 28th 1787, 
aged 46 years, 
also of William their son, 
who died February 19th 1797, 
aged 29 years. 

I have visited the town previously, but I did not have sufficient time available to explore the site on that occasion. Thankfully, a kind soul called Nigel Battley has now answered my request, and posted the above photograph on the website.

St Mary's Church, Diss, Norfolk (Diocese)

Researching your family history can at times be difficult, particularly if there is the small obstacle of distance between yourself and your area of interest. But I think this goes to show that thanks to the kindness of strangers and the power of the Internet, there is always hope that you will eventually find what you're looking for.