I was not able to find any certain details of a John Nicholls with a connection to West Haddon
The name John Nichols however appears in the baptism record of Parish Records born to Rosa Nichols and baptised on 4/6/1893. He appears in the 1901 Census living at West End with his grandfather William Nichols, aged 73, an agricultural labourer; his mother Rosa, the daughter of William, aged 26 working at home as a corset maker; and a brother Thomas, aged 1. John was then aged 8.
There is the potential for confusion in that the list of baptisms for West Haddon shows the surnames Nicholls, Nichols and Nicholl. It is possible that the person who produced the list may have entered the incorrect spelling. To highlight this the name Thomas Nicholls appears in Parish Records having been baptised on 1/4/1900. His mother is recorded as Rose – not Rosa. The age of Thomas would equate to the Thomas Nichols living with Rosa at the time of the 1901 Census.
To add further confusion, according to Parish Records a Rose Nicholls, born to William and Mary, was baptised in West Haddon on 25/9/1871. The records show a Rose Nichols buried on 30/9/1871 aged 7 months. The same child?
The researcher was unable to find John Nichols in the 1911 Census when he would have been 18 years of age. The Census did however show details of John’s mother Rosa. This showed her, aged 37, married to Herbert Stockley, Head of the Household living in West Haddon. He was described as a general engineer, born in Byfield. Thomas was living with mother and step-father and step-father’s four children aged 6, 5, 4 and 1. William, Rosa’s father, was also living with the family. He was then aged 83.
Without further information I was unable to find any military records in respect of John Nicholls or John Nichols. Researchers have been advised that he served with the RSC but this has not been confirmed.
(Jim Blakey 29th January, 2016)