Ancestors of Mandy Willard

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The BROOMER Family of Sussex


My Possible Broomer Ancestors

Family Group Pages

Other Web Sites

Origin and Early History








My Possible Broomer Ancestors

A possible 8x Great Grandmother was Elizabeth Broomer whom I would guess was born in the 1650's.  She married Thomas Caplin in 1678 in Henfield and they settled in Ashington by about 1685.

Please note, I can not be certain that Elizabeth Broomer was my ancestor.  She may not have been the mother of Daniel Caplin.  And then further down the tree her possible 3x Great Grandson, Samuel Stillaway, was said to have been born about 1814/5 in Henfield and have been the son of William Stillaway, but I have not found his baptism.  There would seem to have been only one William Stillaway around at the time who could have been his father, but until I find further evidence, I can only speculate as to whom his ancestors may have been.



Family Group Pages

Thomas Caplin (c1655-?) and Elizabeth Broomer (c1655-1732)



Other Web Sites


None for the moment.






Very many thanks to John Broomer of Surrey for the following:


My line of descent


Elizabeth Broomer



Daniel Caplin



Mary Caplin



Mary Ward



William Stillaway



Samuel Stillaway



Eliza Stillaway



William Stillaway



Annie Elsie Stillaway



Eileen Isabel Tullett


Mandy Willard


(click on a name to go to their family group page)



Origin and Early History of the Surname Broomer


The name of Broomer is one of the oldest Sussex surnames, derived not from the craft or trade of broom-making but taken from the place once famed for its Abbey.  "Breamore" (Bromere in the Domesday Book of 1085), The Abbey was founded towards the reign of Henry I (about 1130), it was apparently visited by Richard II in 1384.  The Abbey was founded by Austin Canons, like most religious houses it had a fraternity into which laity were received as Associates.  There is a record of the Prior receiving John de Brommore, Geva his wife and John their son into the Brotherhood.  Although Breamore is in the County of Hampshire an early Broomer had reason to travel and move to Chichester (an adjacent County).  There is a strong possibility that there is a connection with the Austin Canon's Abbey in Chichester as there is documentation of involvement in Breamore as lay persons.

The first Broomer I have record of in Chichester is Richard de Bromere (1225), he is recorded as having paid for the incense for the Clerks of Chichester Cathedral to use when "Saying the Mass of our Lady" he is also recorded as having conveyed a house "outside the East Gate of Chichester" to the Cathedral. The name "de Bromere" itself is an indication that he came from Breamore (Bromere).

In the Sussex Subsidy Roll of 1327 appears Robert Bromere of Bridham (Birdham), assessed at four shillings and threepence halfpenny, he was a wool merchant.

On 30th June, 1363 reference was made to a holding "formerly of Robert Brommer, goldsmith" held of the king, near the the city jail and the Friars Church in Chichester.

Richard Bromer of Eastergate, Chichester, by will dated 3rd July, 1534 and witnessed by Reverand Robert Hotton, Vicar of Sidlesham, left 12d. to "the Church of Slyndon", 20d. to Walberton Church and 26/8d. to Tortington Priory (Austin Canons), with a shilling to each Priest and eight pence to every novice there.

I feel confident that the pattern of movement of the Broomers is from Breamore, Hampshire to the Chichester area.  Birdham is situated just under five miles South West of Chichester, it is here that Robert de Bromore held Half Knights Fee in 1349....this represents the Manor of Birdham-Broomer.

After the suppression of the Monasteries Birdham-Broomer which had been conveyed to the Hospital of Arundel by Thomas Earl of Arundel, was annexed to the Church of Chichester and now belongs to the Dean and Chapter.

In the succeeding centuries the Broomers gradually moved northwards towards London (interestingly, following the line of Stane Street, the very old Roman Military Road from Chichester to London Bridge).  I have records of Broomers living near Pulborough (Broomers Hill), Shipley, north of Pulborough (Broomers Corner), Warnham, north of Horsham then over the County border into Surrey at Cranleigh, Ewhurst (Broomers Lane), Albury, Abinger, Shere and many other small Surrey villages.

Although still quite an uncommon Surname there are descendants now living in various parts of the U.K., Australia, Canada, New Zealand, U.S.A. and no doubt many other countries around the globe.

(Compiled by John Broomer of Surrey)


This page was updated on 22 November 2012