Top News

Celebrating the family of Violet and Cecil Ward

Violet and Cecil Ward on their wedding day in 1922.
Violet and Cecil Ward on their wedding day in 1922. - Contributed

Lane Myers & Kevin Ward

On July 27, many of the 159 descendants of Violet (Brimblecombe) and Cecil Ward will gather in Kingston, Nova Scotia for a family celebration.

Violet, Cecil and their young family sailed from England on the SS Pennland and arrived in Halifax on June 14, 1926 to settle in Canada.

Cecil, who was born in Old Southgate (London, England), joined the British Army at the age of 16. He served in the York Lancaster Regiment and fought in France, Belgium and Germany during the First World War, until he suffered serious injury and was discharged.

Not long after, Cecil met the lovely Violet Brimblecombe who was born in Maidenhead (near Windsor, England). Following their marriage at St. Gregory's Church in Sudbury, Suffolk, UK, on Sept. 28, 1922, the couple managed the White Hart Inn on the Isle of Wight. They operated this inn for a number of years and started their family before deciding to immigrate to Canada.

While this Ward family originally intended to settle in Montreal, Violet thought that Nova Scotia was far enough from home after the nine-day voyage from Southampton. They chose to settle in the Annapolis Valley on farmland reminiscent of the County of Suffolk, where Cecil had grown up. They purchased a dairy farm located between Bridgetown and Paradise on Highway 1.

In Canada, Violet and Cecil added to their family to have 12 children in total. The children included: Audrey, Nada, John, Rosalind, Daphne, Edgar, Shirley, David, Jeanette, Barbara, Robert and Diana.

During the Second World War, Cecil served in the Canadian Army training troops in Aldershot, Yarmouth and Halifax. After the war, he diversified into a landscaping and nursery business that imported an extensive variety of nursery stock from central Canada and Holland. Many farmers in the Valley purchased their apple and other fruit trees from Ward’s nursery.

Over the years, the children spent a considerable part of their time doing various chores around the home, farm and nursery. While Violet and Cecil operated their nursery and landscaping business for more than 30 years, their four sons continued operations in related businesses.

With 12 children, 38 grandchildren, 80 great-grandchildren and 29 great-great-grandchildren, there are a total of 159 direct descents of Violet and Cecil living in Canada, the United States, England and elsewhere. This extensive line of descendents and the gathering of the Ward family in Kingston will ensure that the memories and legacy of Violet and Cecil Ward will continue for generations.

Recent Stories