Early Chew Magna FEARs
My ancestors

The FEAR family lived in Chew Magna, Somerset from the early 16th century, when John FEERE of Knowle Hill was recorded in the Lay subsidy Rolls, until about 1990. The list ofearlier generationsat the bottom of this page has been provided by the FEAR Single Name Society, a reliable source but not yet checked by myself.

The area south of Chew Magna is now very different to how my ancestors knew it. In the 1950s the River Chew was dammed to create the Chew Valley Lake, a reservoir to provide drinking water for the city of Bristol. Sixteen farmhouses, eleven other houses and 2,000 acres of land were bought up and drowned by the rising waters. Nowadays the lake is designated an area of Special Scientific Interest because of the variety of wildlife it supports including a great birds.

Chew lake visitor centre sketch of Chew lake
The modern visitor centre and tea rooms on the shore of the lake are sited at Knowle Hill where many of the FEARs lived. My own quick sketch of Chew Lake, April 2004, showing (I think!) Denny Island, and a note that there were millions of flying insects present.


Old BBC footage of the Chew Valley before it was flooded

Early Generations of my FEAR ancestors

John FEERE & Alice - My 11x Gt Grandparents, of Knowle Hill and Bishop Sutton. John's Will proved 1546, Alice's Will 1546/7


Richard d 1581 & ? - My 10x Gt Grandfather


Richard d 1605 m Isabell HEALE - My 9x Gt Grandparents


John b 1577 - My 8x Gt Grandfather


Richard 1625/6-1701 & Elizabeth - My 7x Gt Grandparents


Richard 1672-1765 & Charity - My 6x Gt Grandparents

Richard 1672-1765 & Mary Parker - My 5x Gt Grandfather and second wife


James 1714-1770 & Sarah FOWLER b 1740 - 5x Gt Grandparents

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