Annie Webb

Annie Webb was born on 9th February 1857 in Monmouth. Little is known of her early life, but by 1905, she was living in Narberth, Pembrokeshire.

Described during her lifetime as ‘plucky’, Annie built her own home at Peterslake, Narberth, from ‘her own concrete bricks (made) with sand and gravel from a nearby stream…’ A newspaper cutting from 1927 reveals that ‘the concrete blocks weigh over half a hundredweight and Mrs. Webb keeps to herself the secret of how she has been able to make them so perfectly’.

Clearly a self-motivated and independent character, Annie was also reported to regularly walk ten miles to Tenby, pushing a ‘perambulator all the way, loaded up with butter, eggs and vegetables’ before ‘walk(ing) back to Narberth after selling her wares’. This was when she was 70 years old.

In July 1929, she appeared in Narberth Petty Sessional Court for the fourteenth time on the charge of ‘allowing a mule to stray’. The Narberth Weekly News reported that a witness had seen ‘the mule straying on the Stoneditch Road…It was not attached to a rope or chain’. Annie however, protested that ‘He (was) a sensible mule…he stays at home’.

In her later years, Annie showed no signs of slowing down. She took part in a local carnival where she ‘won prizes for the costume (and also) for singing and reciting’ and in 1938, aged 81, she travelled to London in search of estranged family members. In May that year, The Narberth Weekly News reported: ‘sat in the cottage she built herself…a picture fell from the wall…It revived memories of a brother and sister from whom she had parted 50 years before following a family quarrel’. Annie discovered a niece and nephew in Ealing and resolved to ‘send the council official who assisted her a crate of chickens’.

Annie Webb died in Narberth, Pembrokeshire, in December 1943; aged 86 years. The local press described her as a ‘headstrong character’.

Categories: Agriculture | Arts & Literature | Mythology

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