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George Cressall

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Credit for this entry to:
Andrew Behan.

George Cressall

Person  Male  Born 29/8/1880  Died 20/2/1951

Poplar councillor imprisoned during the 1921 rates protest.

George Joseph Cressall  was born on 29 August 1880, the eldest of the sixteen children of Thomas Walter Cressall (1856-1927) and Clara Thurston Cressall née Durant (1861-1944). His birth was registered in the 4th quarter of 1880 in the Bethnal Green registration district and his father was a cooper. He was baptised on 10 October 1880 in St Anne's Church, Limehouse, and the baptismal register shows the family address as 146 Eastfield Street, Limehouse.

The 1881 census shows him living at 2 Tillotson Street, Mile End Old Town, Stepney, with his parents. When his sister, Clara Elizabeth Mary Ann Cressall (1881-1885), was baptised on 8 March 1882 the baptismal register records the family living at 18 Kirby Place, Stepney. His sister, Eleanor Maude Cressall (1883-1954) was baptised on 9 September 1883 and the baptismal register shows the family at 65 Rhodeswell Road, Stepney. They were still recorded there when his brother, Walter Frederic Cressall (1885-1969), was baptised on 21 February 1886, but when his brother Thomas Cressall (1888-1966) was baptised on 25 March 1888 they were residing at 5 Brunton Place, Limehouse. His sister, Clara Cressall (1889-1963) was baptised on 9 February 1890 and the family was recorded as living at 18 Copperfield Road, Mile End.

In the 1891 census he is listed as residing a 18 Samuel Street, Limehouse, with his parents and four siblings. His family were still at this address when his brother, Albert Alfred Cressall (1891-1977), was baptised on 2 August 1891. His sister, Alice Harriet Cressall (1893-1981), was baptised on 9 June 1893 and the register shows the family back at 65 Rhodeswell Road, Stepney. His brother Philip James Cressall, (1895-1899) was baptised on 14 April 1895 and his sisters, Lilian Margaret Cressall (1896-1977) and Rose Cressall (1898-2003) were jointly baptised on 2 September 1899 and the registers show the family living at 18 Samuel Street, Limehouse.

The 1901 census confirms that he was living with his parents and eight siblings 18 Samuel Street and his occupation is listed as a warehouseman. His parents went on to have more children, Elsie May Cressall (1901-1987), Ivy Cressall (1902-1903), Marion Vera Cressall (1904-1994) and Violet Phyllis Cressall ( 1905-1979).

On 17 January 1904 he married Nellie Frances Wilson (1882-1973) at St Dunstan's and All Saints Church, Stepney. The marriage register shows he was a labourer living at 127 White House Road and his wife's address had been 3 York Square and they had eight children: Walter Percival Cressall (1904-1942), Thomas William Cressall (1906-1938), Albert John Cressall (1907-1995), George Phillip Cressall (1910-1986), Charles Keir Cressall (1914-1979), Samuel Lawrence Cressall (1921-1974), Bessie Susan Cressall (1923-1995) and Edgar Frederick Cressall (1927-1983).

They initially lived at 15 Barnes Street, Limehouse, but moved in 1906 to 27 Tomlins Terrace, Limehouse, and the following year to 111 Rhodeswell Road, Stepney. The 1911 census shows him residing at 3 Lee Street, Limehouse with his wife and four sons. His occupation was given as a general labourer at an 'oil & color works'. By 1914 the family had moved to 82 Hind Street, Poplar. They finally settled at 15 Macquarie Way, Isle of Dogs in 1923.

Both he and his wife were Labour Party councillors in the Metropolitan Borough of Poplar and were committed to prison for contempt of court on 5 September 1921 along with 28 other councillors and were not released until 12 October 1921. He served as the Mayor of Poplar for the 1931-1932 year of office.

The 1939 England and Wales Register shows him living with his family at 15 Macquarie Way and lists his occupation as Secretary and Parliamentary Labour Party Agent. He was the Agent for George Lansbury, who was the Leader of the Labour Party from 1932 to 1935. In the 1949 New Year Honours List he was appointed as a Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (OBE) for political and public services in Poplar.

He died, aged 70 years, on 20 February 1951 at St Andrew's Hospital, Devons Road, Bromley-by-Bow, London, E3. Probate records show that his home address remained as 15 Macquarie Way, Millwall and that when probate was granted to his widow on 18 May 1951 his effects totalled £571-18s-9d.

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George Cressall

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