Given names: 
Given address: 
West Eyreton
Sheet No: 262
West Eyreton

Biography contributed by Mrs Colyn Storer, Sydney, Australia

Rebecca Bradley was born Matilda Rebecca in March Quarter of 1849 at Glemsford Suffolk, the second daughter of David Doggett and Matilda nee Ivory, who had married 24 March 1845 at the Baptist Chapel in Norwich by Matilda’s father John Ivory a Baptist pastor.

She had one older sister Hannah (Little), and three younger siblings, Emma Maria (Keir), John and Lucy Priscilla (Harman). All the sisters signed the Petition.

They emigrated to New Zealand on the Glentanner which left London on 11 June and arrived at Lyttleton on 3 October 1857. Matilda’s younger brother Aquila and wife Ann and daughter Louisa were on the same ship. They were joining another brother William Ivory and family and sisters Sarah Jennings and Hannah Stapleforth and their families. Tragedy struck the family soon afterward when William died on 8 December, from sunstroke.  

She attended the school where her mother was the teacher.

She married William Bradley on 22 March 1869. They had ten children, of whom eight survived her.

Her two oldest daughters Emily Lucy Bradley and Maud Maria (Bradley) also signed the Petition.

Her husband moved in 1868 to farm at West Eyreton in the Oxford district near Rangiora where many of her extended family continued to live. Their land was said to be at Gully Head in the 1875 Electoral Roll.

William died on 5 December 1892 at their farm after a serious illness, and was buried at Cust-West Eyreton Cemetery. He had been well respected and very involved in the local community and especially the Wesleyan church which originally met in their home, and Temperance Society to which he was known as a trusty steward and member.

Rebecca continued to live on the farm for another twenty years till she moved firstly to Waimate for some years and then to Christchurch. She had an accurate memory of the early days and became an authority of the history of the district.

She was a devout Methodist and loved to attend the services and pray and sing hymns every day.

She died at 19 London St Christchurch on 9 June 1937 and was buried next to her husband at Cust and was remembered with an Obituary in The New Zealand Methodist Times and North Canterbury Gazette to which she had contributed memoirs of the early days.

Others of her extended family who also signed the Petition were her three sisters

All were grandchildren or their daughters from John Ivory and Sarah nee Emms of Norfolk.

Her three sisters Maria Keir (sheet 241), Hannah Little (318), Lucy Harman (237) and Rebecca’s daughters, Lucy Emily and Maud M Davies both sheet 262. 

Also Margaret Jennings (nee Stapleforth) sheet 241, both she and her husband’s mothers were Ivory family descendants. Cousin by marriage – Helen Ivory (nee Bartrum) Sheet 240.


Birth: and her siblings:

UK GRO Indexes: (NOT the indexes on free.bmd or Ancestry or findmypast). These GRO indexes give mother’s maiden names and age at death.

Her Parents’ Marriage:

British Newspapers on findmypast 

Norfolk News 29 March 1845, Marriages Page 3 of 4
On Monday last (*= Easter Monday 24th March) at the Baptist Chapel, St Clement’s Mr William Doggett to Miss Matilda Ivory, daughter of Mr John Ivory, Baptist minister Cossey. 


1851 Census at Glemsford Suffolk


Family Search

New Zealand, Archives New Zealand, Passenger Lists, 1839-1973 

William Doggett Arrival 03 Oct 1857 Canterbury, New Zealand. Ship Name Glentanner 
"New Zealand, Archives New Zealand, Passenger Lists, 1839-1973," database with images, FamilySearch ( : 8 August 2017), William Doggett, 03 Oct 1857; citing ship Glentanner, Archives New Zealand, Wellington; FHL microfilm 4,407,309.

Arrival Lyttleton: 

Shipping News. Lyttelton Times, Volume VIII, Issue 514, 7 October 1857. Page 4 Passenger List, Page 5 description of a storm near South Africa when the ship almost turned over and would have been lost. Page 5 Advertisements for Passengers to collect their luggage.



Many records of the extended families, from the 1860s onwards, occupations, Community involvement, Church associations, Deaths, Obituaries.

Death, Burial: New Zealand, Cemetery Records, 1800-2007 

[database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2014. 

Funeral Notice:  

Page 17 Advertisements Column 8 Press, Volume LXXIII, Issue 22115, 10 June 1937 


for her husband William Bradley December 1892
Local & General. Star, Issue 7438, 6 December 1892 page 3
North Canterbury Gazette, Volume 7, Issue 9, 11 June 1937 page 5
And The New Zealand Methodist Times 31st July 1937 page 111 

Her Early Memories in North Canterbury Gazette
All Titled: BY Rebecca Bradley
SEVENTY-FIVE YEARS AGO North Canterbury Gazette, Volume 2, Issue 41, 29 December 1933 page 4 

To the last one

RETURN TO NORTH CANTERBURY North Canterbury Gazette, Volume 6, Issue 54, 26 February 1937 page 5

Her reply to a query

Out and About in Rangiora North Canterbury Gazette, Volume 6, Issue 56, 5 March 1937 page 4

“We stand corrected”, and more amazing memories.

Finally less than a month before her death:

Cemeteries in Rangiora: Some Early Memories North Canterbury Gazette, Volume 7, Issue 1, 14 May 1937 page 4   by C.J.C.

Including comments on the Cemeteries especially in Rangiora area, ownership, which group started them and when. And details of the intermarriage/connections of the Ivory, Jennings, Stapleforth and Doggett families and that Rebecca Bradley’s father was the first person buried in the Baptist Cemetery there.

Click on sheet number to see the 1893 petition sheet this signature appeared on. Digital copies of the sheets supplied by Archives New Zealand.

How to cite this page

'Rebecca Bradley', URL:, (Ministry for Culture and Heritage), updated 13-Feb-2019

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