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Daniel Hoadley - Fly Proprietor

Daniel Hoadley 1833 - 1910

Daniel Hoadley was born locally in 1832 to John and Maria Hoadley. He had four siblings, Emma, Harriett, Mary Ann, and Martin.

He married Sophia Thompson when he was 20, and they had a daughter called Annie. Sophia died in 1890, aged 58, in Tunbridge Wells. After her death, Daniel lived for a while at at Lodge House in Calverley Park with his daughter, son-in-law, niece, and two servants.

On 29th June 1892, Daniel married Frances Eliza Wiseman, the daughter of William Wiseman of Oxford. Daniel’s daughter Annie died a few years later in 1899 at the age of 40. She is buried in the cemetery in the plot next to Daniel.

Daniel was a leading and talented coachman, renowned for his skill and excellent timekeeping. He was the leader of Tunbridge Wells coach owners and veteran of the arduous 40-mile run from the Royal Kentish Hotel in Tunbridge Wells to London. His journey included Quarry Hill and River Hill, both of which required nerve and skill with it’s steep ascents and descents. Daniel also used to run a coach to Bodiam Castle, through Lamberhurst and Hawkhurst.

Daniel was well-known in Tunbridge Wells, London, and in the coaching industry for arriving “on the minute” to his destinations. According to local newspaper reports, he was known as the “King of Whips”. Due to his “cheery” manner, he was also in great demand as a postillion driver, who sat alongside the coachman, and was often requested for high profile carriage rides through Tunbridge Wells. Local newspaper reports described him as “ever-smiling”, “portly,” and of typical “John Bull” appearance.

He was entrepreneurial and had a business as the owner of a Donkey Chaise which was considered a very fashionable vehicle at the time. Later, he had one of the largest collections of carriages and horses for public hire in Kent. His office was located in Crescent Road, Tunbridge Wells.

He was also instrumental in setting up the omnibus service between Tunbridge Wells and Southborough, and he ran public vehicles on the road up to 1898. After this time, he clashed with the authorities on the question of licenses and discontinued the service.

Daniel was a member of the Pantiles Lodge of Freemasons until the age of 75, after which he resigned due to his age. Daniel passed away on the morning of Saturday 24th September, aged 77 years old. He died at 31 Prospect Road, Tunbridge Wells.

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