Alice Kate Wheatley, the wife of Sydney Montague Priske, was born in Wheathampstead, England, the fourth of ten children born to George Wheatley and Mary Anne Wheeler. Her ancestors can also be found in and around the County of Hertfordshire and Metropolitan London.
The railway played a large part in the history of both Wheathampstead and the life of Alice Kate Wheatley, her siblings and her parents, as the Great Northern Railway employed, at one time or other, her father, her brother and, for a very short period of time, her husband, Sydney Montague Priske.
The coming of the railway in 1860, to Wheathampstead changed people’s lives, socially and economically. Before 1860 most inhabitants of the village had never travelled further than the centre of St Albans on market day, but once the line opened, there were many new opportunities.
Elephant dung, dirty laundry and fresh fish – these are just three of the cargoes that passed through Wheathampstead railway station during more than a century the rail line was in operation!