The Whittle Family of 22 Chinchen Street, Islington, NSW 1912 – 1959

Hubert and Ann Whittle were married at Carrington in the Methodist Church on the 19th April, 1905 and lived in Wickham after they were married. Their first 4 children Eric, Mary, Ralph and Jack were born in Wickham until the family moved to 22 Chinchen Street Islington in 1911.

22 Chinchen Street, Islington was a two-story Grocery shop at that time and the family lived above the shop where their father Hubert was a very successful grocer delivering orders all over Islington, Maryville and Tighes Hill. Ann worked in the shop as well as raising a large family. The family was very religious and attended the Islington Baptist Church where Ann sang in the choir.

Their other children Elsie born in 1912, Alan born in1913, Wallace born in 1918 and Kenneth born in 1921 were all born at 22 Chinchen Street Islington. Elsie died on the 23rd December 1914. Ralph died on the 1st February 1921 as a result from falling out of one of the large trees in Islington Park, the play ground for all the Islington boys. He was just 12 year old. This had a big impact on the family, especially on their mother Ann.

Ann Whittle (nee Lewis) was diagnosed with breast cancer just after Kenneth’s birth on the 7th March 1921. Her daughter Mary, aged nearly 14, became her nurse and looked after the baby as well. The younger boys, Alan and Wallace, were sent to 2 different Children’s homes where they stayed until 1927.

Ann died at 22 Chinchen Street Islington on the 22nd November, 1924 with cancer to the spine (a result from her breast cancer). After the funeral service at Islington Baptist Church she was buried in the Baptist Cemetery at Sandgate with her children Elsie and Ralph.

Hubert Whittle married a nurse Elfreda Payton in 1927 and moved to 17 Islington Street Islington with the 3 younger children and Mary while the older children, Eric and Jack, lived in the flat above the shop.

This shop burnt down in the 1930’s and a single story shop was built as a replacement. Hubert Whittle worked in the shop with his son Alan until 1942 when he had heart problems. As an essential service industry during World War 2 Alan, at a Army training centre , was called back to take over the shop.

Alan had married in 1941 and his wife helped him in the shop while also raising 5 children. These children also helped out in the shop on Saturdays for pocket money. The children also attended the Sunday School at the Islington Baptist Church with their Aunty Mary.

The shop at 22 Chinchen Street was sold in 1957 and remained as a corner store for a few more years but was then allowed to become a derelict building for many years until recently when it was pulled down and a new house was built.

Jack Whittle married Kath Conlan in 1952, the licensee at the Park View Hotel in Maitland Road Islington near the TAFE. The Park View Hotel was badly damaged in the Newcastle earthquake and pulled down. They remained at this hotel for a few years and then bought the Charlestown Picture Theatre; but the love of Islington and hotels was still in their blood. They sold the theatre and bought the Hamilton Station Hotel on the corner of Fern Street and Maitland Road where they remained until they retired.

The Whittle connection is still present in Islington. Two of Hubert and Ann Whittle’s great grand children have a hotel in Maitland Road Islington, the Wickham Park Hotel.

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