Norwich – Rosary Cemetery (William Webster + Maria Webster)

Since I’ve been grounded again by the Government, I thought I’d meander around the Rosary Cemetery located near to me in Norwich, in an attempt to see what stories lie there. It might not be the most fascinating blog content, but it’ll keep me quiet for a few weeks….

This grave intrigued me because it’s likely that it’ll be impossible to read in a few years if the damage to the stone continues, with some of the writing already unreadable.

The grave is, I think, that of William Webster who was born in 1779 and died on 19 February 1834 at the age of 55 years, being buried on 26 February 1834. He married Maria Baston in London in April 1826.

He was the master of the Maid’s Head hotel (which is still trading) in Norwich in the parish of St. Simon, although the hotel is located opposite Norwich Cathedral. It seems that William had taken over in the late eighteenth century and he held the role at the Maid’s Head until his death in February 1834. He had been ill in 1812, with his son, also named William, taking over the running of the Maid’s Head. The licensing records show that the hotel was then taken over by Andrew Webster, who was William’s son, and Maria, but they held the license only until October 1834, when it passed to Edward Howell following Maria’s retirement. The younger William Webster took some form of running of the pub later on in the 1850s and 1860s.

Maria, William’s wife, died on 4 February 1851 at the age of 70 years.

I’m sure there’s a lot more to this story, and the references to William Webster at the pub are hard to unpick as father and son shared the same name (and job), with information about Maria being hard to find.