Picture Gallery

The Military Connection.

Rawalpindi, about 1899.

Edward Vincent Robley (1867-1909) served in the Indian Army from 1889.

Edward Vincent Robley with his daughter, Beryl Robley, born in India in 1900.

Photograph contributed by Linda Davis.

Farming in Cumberland

Taken at the rear of the house, Midtown Farm, Beckermet

John Alfred Smith (1863-1931), brother of Elizabeth Robley, Gt. Uncle of John Robley of Western Australia, John Robley writes, "Thomas Robley died in 1902, when my father, John was only six years old and Uncle Alfred became de facto father and mentor to him. He was a great sportsman being a keen angler and shot. The local stories surrounding Uncle Alfred tell of a high spirited man who was known to enter the village street, at the gallop with drawn sabre yelling at the top of his voice."

Haymaking in Longmire Field, Midtown Farm, Beckermet

John Robley (1896-1954), with his 3 sisters, in descending order of size, Isobel (Iso), Elizabeth (Bet) and Mary (Mollie). They are with their governess, Mrs. Kneale. John Robley of Lesmurdie, W. Australia, who contributed this photograph, says it was almost certainly taken by his grandmother, Elizabeth Smith, who was something of an expert in early photography. His father John is doing the driving, and the picture was taken around 1902/3.

John Robley and his son, Jack harvesting.

Photograph contributed by Iris Rogan

John Robley on his farm at Netherton, nr.Talkin. Iris Rogan writes,"granddad (John Robley) standing ---Mum (Margaret Maud) is the face at the back --- the guy with the flat cap is my dad (Richard Mitchell Armstrong)." We can date this photograph. Margaret Maud was pregnant with twins at the time and the twins (Florence Irene Armstrong and Thomas Ivor Armstrong) were born in 1943.

Photograph contributed by Iris Rogan

John Robley (right) and his brother, Thomas, at work on Midtown Farm. The photograph was taken around 1905.

Joseph Robley (right) and his brother, William Isaac, at work on Midtown Farm. The photograph was taken around 1905.

Roboleine: Champion Horse bred by Mary Ann Robley, of Cumwhitton

Clydesdale Filly. Brown. Foaled 1926. sire, Ardyne Refiner (19606)

Dam, Rose of Cumwhitton, by Union Jack (16120)

Bred by Mrs. Robley, of Cumwhitton.

Property of John A. Armstrong, The Beeches, Harraby, Carlisle.

Winner of First Prize at Kilmarnock, 16th April, 1927

From the Scottish Farmer, May 7th, 1927.

Joe Robley, of Demesne, Cumwhitton, who contributed the photograph, and newspaper cutting about Roboleine, added this comment: "Roboleine topped the sale at Carlisle, and was bought by a dealer to export to Canada. The Canadian, who bought her, changed the name of his ranch to Roboleine".

Colin Armstrong, gt. grandson of Mary Ann Robley (above) with his champion Suffolk sheep.

Colin with one of his champion sheep. This sheep won several local shows as a lamb, shearling and as a ewe. The photograph was taken when she was a shearling. Iris Rogan (Colin's sister) comments, "this picture was taken before foot-n-mouth - his flock was wiped out then, although he is has them again now".

Another of Colin's champion sheep. As a lamb she won the Cumberland & Westmorland shows & all the local shows. In addition, in the North Suffolk Breeders Club, she won the prize for Best Female in Breeder's Hands, both as a shearling and as a ewe.

Photographs contributed by Iris Rogan

Cumberland & Westmorland Wrestling.

Brian Armstrong, son of Margaret Maud Robley & Richard Mitchell Armstrong, in the garden at Dorrifield with some of the trophies he won in Cumberland & Westmorland Wrestling. His brother, Ivor also became a champion.

Former champions in the Robley family include: William Robley of Egremont (1826-1889).

Joseph Robley of Scarrowmanwick (1801-1874).

John Robley of Scarrowmanwick & Pictou, Nova Scotia (1899-1876)

Contributed by Iris Rogan

Cumberland & Westmorland Wrestling.

Thomas Ivor Armstrong, son of Margaret Maud Robley & Richard Mitchell Armstrong, and brother of Brian Armstrong (above). Champion Wrestler.
Ivor won the 14 stone world championship in 1971 and 1972 – the photo of him in the suit carrying the Belt and the cup was taken at Bitts Park Cumberland Show 1971 where he had just won not only the Belt but the other cup he is carrying in the Guinness Trophy.

The (Belt Presented by Prof Jack Robinson, Johannesburg in memory of the original holder of the Belt- his father Jack Robinson of Cockermouth and Newcastle)

The Guinness Trophies were first awarded in 1964 and continue to be awarded each year for “the most meritorious performance” in the wrestling events at the Cumberland Show, Ambleside Sports, Grasmere Sports, Keswick Show, and Egremont Crab Fair.

Some of the other trophies awarded to Ivor include the 12 stone championship won in 1972.

In 1965, at the age of 22, Ivor won the 10-1/2 ten and a half world championship!

He won lots of trophies, but these championships are the ones that are recorded.

Contributed by Iris Rogan

The Seven Children of Joseph Robley & Mary Ann Lowis

John Robley (1878-1959)

John Robley, the eldest son of Joseph Robley and Mary Ann Lowis, was born at Scarrowmanwick on September 19th, 1878. He married Margaret Jane McKitterick, and they had 5 children: Joseph, Christopher (Chris), John (Jack), Elsie May, and Maud. John died in the City General Hospital, Carlisle in 1959 aged 80. He is, buried beside his wife, in Cumwhitton Churchyard.

Jane Elizabeth Robley


Jane Elizabeth Robley was born at Scarrowmanwick on June 2nd, 1880, the eldest daughter of Joseph Robley and Mary Ann Lowis. Jane never married. She died of diabetes at Cumwhitton on December 5th, 1916, aged 36 years, and was interred, beside her parents, in Cumwhitton Churchyard on December 8th.

Maud Mary Robley


Maud Mary Robley was born at Scarrowmanwick on 4th May, 1882, the daughter of Joseph Robley and Mary Ann Lowis. She married Thomas William Dixon, the proprietor of the Red Lion, Cumwhitton. They retired to Fern Bank, Cumwhitton. Together they had 5 children: Joseph, Mary, Thomas, John George, and Dan. Maud died at Fern Bank on Friday, 2nd May, 1958 aged 75 years, and was interred at St. Mary’s Churchyard, Cumwhitton on Monday, May 5th.

Joseph Robley


Joseph Robley was born at Cumwhitton on 21st March 1884, the son of Joseph Robley and Mary Ann Lowis. He married Mary Moore from Gateshead. They had no children. Joseph farmed at Shepherd’s View, Castle Carrock.

Thomas Robley


Thomas Robley was born at Cumwhitton on 26th September 1886, the son of Joseph Robley and Mary Ann Lowis. He married Annie Nicholas McKitterick on 27th December 1909 (Thomas and his brother John married sisters). Together they had 6 children: Edith May, Doris Annie, Mabel Winifred, Thomas Lewis, Clara Margaret and Harold George. Thomas farmed at Common Edge, Ainstable and Red Hill, Armathwaite. He died on 8th April, 1974

Mabel Sarah Robley (Ferguson) 28 March 1889- 16 October 1958

Mabel Sarah Robley was born on March 2nd 1889 at Cumwhitton, the youngest daughter of Joseph Robley and Mary Ann Lowis. She married David Wilfrid Ferguson, and they left Cumberland and moved to a farm in Kent. They had six children: Joseph, William, David Wilfrid, Annie Mary, Mabel and Margaret. Maud died at Frith Farm, Guston, Dover on Sunday, 19th October 1958 aged 69 years. She was buried in Charlton Cemetary, Dover on 23rd October

William Isaac Robley, of Cumwhitton 25 Aug 1892 - 30 Dec 1954

William Isaac Robley was born on 25th August 1892 at Cumwhitton, the youngest son of Joseph Robley and Mary Ann Lowis. He married Hannah Graham of Wall Farm, Plumpton at the Mansion House Register Office, Penrith on 4th November 1930. They had 3 children: Marian, Walter Graham and Anne Noreen Jane. William had 3 farms at Cumwhitton,: Midtown, Townhead and Townfoot, and 1 at Scarrowmanwick, near Croglin. He died of cancer on 30th December 1954, aged 62 years, and is buried in Cumwhitton Churchyard.

Mary Ann Lowis with 3 of her 7 children at Midtown Farm.

Mary Ann Robley, with Maud Mary, Jane Elizabeth and William Isaac. This photograph, which was taken around 1905, was contributed by Joe Robley of Demesne, Cumwhitton, and his sister, Kathleen Young of Guildford, Surrey.

John Robley (1878-1959) as an old man. The photograph was taken at Demesne, Cumwhitton, and was contibuted by two of his grandchildren, Joe Robley and Kathleen Young.

Jack (John) Robley was born on 1st January, 1912. He married Mary Wilkinson and had 7 children: John, Margaret, Joseph, William, Maurice, Kathleen and Arnold. Margaret died as an infant. The photograph was taken at Demesne, Cumwhitton, and was contributed by 2 of his children, Joe and Kathleen.

Mabel Robley Ferguson and her husband David Wilfrid Ferguson, taken around 1950

Their grandson, George Rogers, writes: "David Ferguson came from Cumwhitton. The family home was Whitehead Hill, which was in his family under his father (Joseph Alexander m. Anne Armstrong), and his grandfather (David m. Ann Gibson). David and Mabel married at Gateshead on 1 December, 1909, and the witnesses were Robert Ferguson and Jane Elizabeth Robley. After the marriage, David managed a farm near Newcastle. Their first child was born on 8th January 1914 in Cumwhitton. They spent some time considering different avenues before coming to Dover in 1925."

The Canadian Robleys, descendants of Thomas & Elizabeth Robley of Scarrowmanwick.

Isaac Robley of Pictou County, Nova Scotia, Canada. Isaac was the son of John Robley, born Scarrowmanwick, Cumberland and Ellen Patterson. The present day Robleys in Pictou, NS are descendants of Isaac and his wife Catherine Jane McKenzie.

Five of the seven children of Isaac Robley and Catherine Jane McKenzie.

Back row, left to right: George Harold Robley(b.28-12-1897), Roderick (Rod) McKenzie Robley (b.28-06-1894)

Seated, left to right: Christina Ellen Robley (b.28-11-1899), Annie Isabella Robley (b.26-01-1903), Mabel May Robley (b. 10-06-1885).

Isaac and Catherine's remaining children died young. Hannah Ellen Robley (b. 28-01-1887) died of grippe (influenza), aged six. John William Robley was tragically killed when working alone in Smith's Grist-Mill. He was sixteen years old.

Roderick McKenzie Robley, and his wife Jessie Eva Waters (b. 23-07-1897). Rod and Eva married on 23rd January, 1918, and all the Robleys still living in Pictou, NS. are descended from them.

Roderick McKenzie Robley and Eva Jessie (Waters) Robley with their six children.

Back row, left to right: Catherine Olivia Robley (b.17-05-1919), Mabel Evelyn Robley (b.23-11-1920), Eva Elizabeth Robley (b. 23-03-1931), Harold Vernon Robley (b. 7-03-1927), John Roderick Robley (b.15-01-1929). Front row, seated, left to right: Roderick Mckenzie Robley, Waldo Rae Robley (b. 24-09-1934), Eva Jessie Robley.

Waldo Rae Robley & his wife Marilyn.

Taken in 1998 on the Northumberland Straight near Pictou Harbour. Waldo & Marilyn live in Fort Erie, Ontario.

Elva Elizabeth Robley with her husband Harold Smith, taken September, 1986 - 25 years married. Elva and Harold live in Pictou, NS. They have 3 children and 4 grandchildren.

The Canadian Robleys, descendants of Thomas & Elizabeth Robley of Scarrowmanwick, through their son, William (1796-1866) & Catherine Fraser (1794-1882).

Photography contributed by Ford & Lorraine Hilton

Lorraine writes:

"Here is the "map" of the family picture:

WE Louttit - Sophia husband

AJ MacDonald - Kate's husband

Kate - Katherine Fraser Robley MaDonald

Jen - Sarah Jane Robley

Mollie - Mary Thurston Robley Morris

Harry MacLaughlin - Bess' husbandBess - Elizabeth Robley

Hokey - Sophia

Mat - Martha Bruton Robley holding Ethel Sullivan, her daughter.

She was a favorite aunt of mine and I named one of my sons Matthew, called Matt, in honor of her nickname.

Gordon - Mat's son who was killed in France in WW1

Mona - Mat's daughter

AM Mackay - Angus Murdock MacKay, Mat's husband

From left to right in the back – Sophia and Martha (Mat) and left to right in the front – Katherine (Kate), Elizabeth (Bess), Mary (Moll), and Sarah (Jen).

Photograph contributed by Lorraine & Ford Hilton

William Isaac Robley with Hannah Graham & their two children, Walter Graham Robley & Marian Robley.

William Isaac (1892-1954) with his wife, Hannah (Graham) Robley. The photograph is taken at Midtown, Cumwhitton

Walter Graham Robley was born on 14th December, 1933 at Midtown Farm, Cumwhitton, the son of William Isaac Robley and Hannah Graham. He owns 4 farms in Cumwhitton and 1 at the Faugh, which he runs with the help of his son David. Walter died on 24th March, 2008 of Parkinsons disease.

David Walter Robley was born on the 8th December, 1964 at Townfoot Farm, Cumwhitton. He is the son of Walter Graham Robley and Elizabeth Henderson. He married Jennifer Clay on 22nd March, 1991 and they have 2 sons, Joseph William and Jonathan Graham. David helps his father manage the farms at Cumwhitton and has a farm of his own at Fellend, Cumrew.

Marian Robley & Gilbert Foster Dublin, 1955

Marian Robley (Foster) and Gilbert Foster, on board the Iberia, bound for Australia. They entered Australia on 22nd Feb., 1966, and stayed there 6 years. Their 4 children, Aidan, Gerald, Bride and Rona had their early education in Wagga Wagga and Newcastle, NSW. In 1971 they moved to St. John's, Newfoundland, where they lived for nearly 10 years.