Emma Kathleen Earp

Emma Kathleen Earp usually known as Kathleen, was the fifth child of  W. R. Earp and Emma Earp (nee Armstrong). She was born on 20th April 1881 in Halton Road, Runcorn. She was christened on 15th May 1881 in Halton.

She had four older siblings, Ethel Mary was 8, William 7, Rowland 5 and Mabel 2. Sadly William drowned in the canal at Runcorn the year after Kathleen was born.        

In 1886, when she was 5, the family moved from Runcorn to Tannery House in Preston Brook, the house and adjacent tannery having been vacated the previous year.  Her father reinstated the Preston Brook tanning business.

In the 1891 census, her cousin Joseph Earp had joined the household to learn the tanning trade and Lucy Leigh and Mary Miller were domestic servants.  Kathleen was a pupil at Miss Rimmer’s Private School in Wilson Patten Street, Warrington.  

In the 1901 census, Kathleen’s widowed grandmother, Mary Armstrong age 84 was living with them but there were no resident servants. 

In the 1911 census, Kathleen, her parents and two sisters, Ethel and Mabel were living at The Tannery. Rowland was living in Halton Cottage,  Halton Village.

In the 1900’s Kathleen loved to chauffeur her father in her Model “T” Ford on his business activities. She loved to play tennis at home and as a member of Frodsham Lawn Tennis Club of which she was made an honorary member in 1936. She liked reading, especially Arthur Conan Doyle’s “Sherlock Holmes”. She was an accomplished singer and musician and gave private piano lessons to many local pupils.

During  WW1 Kathleen and her sister Mabel joined the Red Cross serving as V.A.D.’s in the local auxiliary hospitals, The Oaklands (now the site of the Daresbury Hotel) and Raddon Court in Latchford.

Her father William Richard Earp died in 1924 and her mother Emma died in 1931.

Following Rowland’s death in 1942, his widow Frances and son Bill moved into Tannery House with Kathleen. Bill took over the running of the tannery oil business.

Bill moved out of the house in 1969 with his wife and family.

Kathleen and Frances continued to live at Tannery House until Kathleen passed away in 1975 at the age of 94. Frances went to live with son Bill and his family. The tannery land is now within the Whitehouse Industrial Estate and nothing now remains.