||With origins in Sutton-in-Ashfield, Nottinghamshire, UK, deep in the heart of
Sherwood Forest and Robin Hood country, this branch of the clan was first spotted in
Canada in May 1956 on the banks of the mighty "Fleuve Saint-Laurent" near
It is a courageous act to leave behind all
that you knew to move to a new country with nothing but a few possessions and lots of hope
and dreams. A young family arrived in Canada that day to start a new life for
themselves and their 10 month old son. Arriving in Montréal on the Empress of
Scotland, we must have looked "lost and forlorn". Our first impression of
this new land was the kindness of the customs and immigration officer, Adolphe, who not
only invited us to stay with him and his family until we were able to find a place of our
own but who also helped my father find a job that first week. Our first home in this
new land was a basement apartment on Delorimier Avenue in Montréal.
Since then this family, adding a
few more members along the way, has migrated from one end of this beautiful country to the
other with stops in Montréal, Dorval and Pierrefonds in Québec followed by a move west
to North Vancouver, British Columbia.
In 1965, the family moved back to
England, living in Annesley Woodhouse, Nottinghamshire, UK, just a few miles from Newstead
Abbey, the home of the poet Lord Byron.
After a year and a half, Dorval
once again beckoned. It was different this time because the nomadic urges were
starting to wane. The family stayed in Dorval for 15 years. By the early
1980's the children were starting to leave the nest (about time the parents were heard to
say!) getting married and having children of their own.
In 1982, the main branch of the
family moved first to Alexandria, Ontario (not Egypt) and finally Almonte, Ontario where they live today.
This Canadian branch of the Willey family
is shown in the photo at left. In the front row are Marilyn, Albert, Betty and
Pat. The three good-looking men in the back are Peter, Don and David. David
and his family have been spotted at times in Notre-Dame de Grâce, Québec and Navan (Notre-Dame des Champs), Ontario. Peter
and his family have flitted from Lachine, Québec, to Sutton-in-Ashfield, UK, to Gatineau,
Québec and finally settling in the Almonte/Carleton Place area. Marilyn and her
family, as well as Don, are still in Almonte. Pat and her family live in Lancaster,