Francis Roads: family

My father was Francis ("Frank") Albert Roads (1912-1995). His father, Albert Arthur Roads, a signwriter, was killed in WW I in 1917. His mother, Frances Alice Roads née Pond, was left bringing up my father together with Ivy and Violet, my aunts and his elder sisters. She died of cancer in 1930, probably exacerbated by the strain of caring for her family in the days before social security.

Father read for a physics degree at night school in the late 30's, but failed on Thermodynamics. After some time as a school laboratory assistant he worked for Ilford Limited. Photography was a lifelong interest. He married my mother in 1938. In 1967, following a move from Ilford Ltd. to 3M Research, he moved away from the family home in Gidea Park to his own flat in Harlow.

My mother was Nora Druce Roads. Her maiden name appears here in a garbled form, as it may be used as a password. Please contact me direct if you need to know it. Her grandfather, Albert Bean senior, was a Victorian paterfamilias who had 12 children, nine of whom survived infancy. Three of them emigrated to the USA, and the grandson of one of them, Robert Bean of Iowa City, has researched the Bean family extensively back to a John Bean born in 1575.

My grandfather Frederick Bean, Albert's ninth child, took over the family hauliers business after two of the elder sons had failed to make a success of it. He did. My grandmother, Nora Bean née Paintin came from Witney. She died in 1929 of pleurisy, having born Mother and her younger brother, Mervyn Lemuel, my uncle. Frederick subsequently married his second wife Dorothy, before dying in 1947. Thus Frederick was the only grandparent that I ever met.

Mother trained as an infants teacher and worked in that capacity until marriage. Later she took up teaching again in my old Primary school, St. Edwards. In retirement she became very active with the Townswomen's Guild.

I married Judith Ann Benwell in 1966. We had two sons, Oliver Martin (born 1969) and Samuel Sebastian (born 1972). Judith trained as an oboist at the Royal College of Music, but after many years teaching the oboe privately and as a peripatetic school music teacher, retrained as a teacher of English as a Foreign Language. She is an active member of the Society of Friends (Quakers).

Oliver lived in Wanstead, and taught English as a Foreign Language. He died of a long term illness in March 2009. Sam lives in Cardiff. He is interested in fantasy role-playing, and is joint manager of Harlequin Games. His firm has recently released The One Ring, a game based on Tolkein's imaginary world. He plays in the rock band Random Note Generator.

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