Guild of One-Name Studies
One-name studies, Genealogy
Variants: Amett, Armet, Armett, Armit, Arnitt
Category: 1 - A study where research using core genealogical datasets and transcriptions is in its early stages.
Contact: Mrs Susan Roworth
The branch of the Armitt family I grew up in was based in Manchester, England and its surrounding area but my great grandfather John Armitt 1861- 1936 grew up in a little village in Heaton, Staffordshire, England.
My uncle delved into the family history and told my father that he had discovered we were descendants of Flemish weavers. My husband found this surprising when a recent autosomal DNA test found me 83% GB to his 69% however looking at the DNA area map GB includes the Low Countries of The Netherlands and Belgium.
The records for births, marriages, and deaths tend to be in the records of St Lawrence Church in Rushton Spencer, nick named 'the church on the hill'. Visiting the church seemed very easy in the 1990's but nowadays the narrow lanes and steep inclines are rather off putting because of this I am glad I wrote down monumental inscriptions during a visit in 1992.
The coat of arms does not reflect my personal experience of the Armitt family as my great grandfather became a servant in Gawsworth, Cheshire as did his siblings before, I assume, his move to Lancashire was in pursuit of greater job opportunities and higher income offered in the bustling and developing 'cottonopolis' of Manchester.
I started my interest in family history in 1991 in the days of paper indexes and microfiche many years before the wealth of online records we find today. In some ways it was easier because we were not swamped with possible matches but with advancing age I do enjoy the accessibility of the website search. It is always important to apply the Genealogical Proof Standard to all work.
Recently I visited the India Office Records, held at the British Library in London, to find an answer to a brick wall from 1992 and it was exciting to handle microfiche again especially with some modern machines available to reverse the image from a film negative to positive making reading much easier.
The advent of DNA testing is exciting as it has enabled me to have an extra source to confirm links I have already found through building my online family tree.
Please make contact if you have questions, corrections or additions no matter how small all are welcome.
(Anglo-French-Lat-Greek) Hermit. [Middle English A. -French) hermite, heremite, Low Latin) heremita, a hermit; Greek έρημίτης (erēmitēs); from έρημία (erēmía), solitude]
Sir John Alexander Armitt, CBE, FREng, FICE (born 2 February 1946) is an English civil engineer, who was from 2007 Chairman of the Olympic Delivery Authority, the body which successfully built the venues, facilities and infrastructure for the 2012 Olympic Games. He was President of the Institution of Civil Engineers for 2015–16, having been a vice-president since 2012.
He is also Chairman of the Council of the City and Guilds of London Institute, and took office in October 2012. He was Chairman of the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council from 2007 until 2012. He was appointed Chairman of National Expresson 1 February 2013.
Armitt was born in February 1946 in North London. He is 6 ft 4 in tall. He attended Portsmouth Northern Grammar School. He graduated in Civil Engineering from the Portsmouth College of Technology in 1966 and took his first job with John Laing.
Armitt spent 27 years with John Laing, on various projects including the Sizewell B nuclear power station rising to become the Chairman of Laing's International and Civil Engineering Divisions. In 1993 he was appointed Chief executive of Union Railways, the company responsible for implementing the Channel Tunnel rail link. From 1997 to 2001 he was Chief executive of Costain Group, which he converted from an annual loss of £62 million to a profit of £6.5 million. In 2001 he became Chief executive of Railtrack, and from 2002 to 2007 its successor, Network Rail,
During his time at Network Rail he was believed by a survey sponsored by The Sunday Times to be the highest-paid public-sector employee in the UK. Armitt's salary and bonus of £878,000 – rising to more than £1m when pension contributions are included, overtaking Adam Crozier, chief executive of Royal Mail.
On 2 November 2012 the Government announced that Armitt would be a member of the Airports Commission. He is also deputy chairman of the Berkeley Group and a Transport for London board member. The 'Armitt Review', an independent review of long-term UK infrastructure planning, was published in September 2013, and is Labour Party policy.
He was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the 1996 Birthday Honours for services to the rail industry. On 16 July 2007 Network Rail named New Measurement Train power car 43062 after him at London Euston. He is a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering and of the Institution of Civil Engineers.
He was knighted in the 2012 New Years Honours List for services to engineering and construction as chair of the Olympic Delivery Authority. His knighthood was criticised by the family of a victim of the Grayrigg derailment, as Armitt had been serving as chief executive of Network Rail at the time of the 2007 accident. Network Rail were prosecuted for the incident on the same day that Armitt's knighthood was conferred.
This interesting and curious surname is an unusual variant of Hermite, which is of Old French origin, and is a nickname given at least as often to someone who lived in an isolated spot or who was not on good terms with their neighbours, as to actual hermits. Other surnames from this source include Armett, Armit, and Hermitte. Nicknames were given in the first instance with reference to a variety of occupations or to personal characteristics, such as physical attributes or peculiarities, mental and moral characteristics, supposed resemblance to an animal's or bird's appearance or disposition, or to habits of dress. The surname is first recorded in the late 12th Century (see below), while other examples include: William le Heremit, in the Curia Rolls of Yorkshire (1208); Andrew Ermite, in the Court Rolls of the Manor of Ramsey (1255); and Thomas Harmyt, in the Rochester Court Wills (1526). William Armitt married Mary Atkings on October 18th 1665, at St. James', Duke's Place, London. A Coat of Arms granted to the family depicts three silver helmets close, with a gold bordure on a silver shield, with the Motto "Fortis in arduis", (Brave under difficulties). The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William L'ermite, which was dated 1196, in the "Pipe Rolls of Yorkshire", during the reign of King Richard 1, known as "Richard the Lionheart", 1189 - 1199. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
© Copyright: Name Origin Research www.surnamedb.com 1980 - 2017
Armitt Museum Ambleside Cumbria England
Who are we, if not a combination of experiences, information, books we have read, things imagined? Each life is an encyclopaedia; a library, an inventory of objects, a series of styles, and everything can be constantly reshuffled and reordered in every conceivable way.
(Italo Calvino, Six Memos for the Next Millennium)
The Armitt is a unique combination of museum, library and gallery devoted to preserving and sharing the cultural heritage of the Lake District.
Mary Louisa Armitt founded the Library to foster an exchange of ideas in the local community. The Library opened in 1912. More than a century later, we continue to support the spirit of enquiry in all that we do.
Beatrix Potter was one of the Armitt’s early supporters, and our collection holds a number of her family’s books as well as her personal first editions of the ‘little’ books. Her major gift however came in the form of a large number of exquisite botanical watercolours. At the centre of our exhibition ‘Beatrix Potter, Image and Reality’, these works reveal fascinating and lesser-known aspects of her life story.
Today, the Armitt is proud to house one of the country’s most important collections of artwork by Kurt Schwitters, who influenced the development of twentieth-century art and lived in Ambleside during his final years. In early 2016, generous support from the V&A Purchase Fund, the National Art Collections Fund, the Friends of the Armitt, and local donors allowed us to acquire a further five wonderful Schwitters paintings from his Ambleside years. All works are now on permanent display.
The Armitt Library and Museum Centre is a registered charity, number 1054762
Open throughout the year.
Summer Opening Hours (April-October)
Tuesday-Saturday 10.00am-5.00pm (last admission 4pm).
Mary Louisa Armitt (31 July 1851 – 24 September 1911) was an English polymath. She was a teacher, writer, ornithologist and philanthropist. She was the funder and founder of the Armitt Library, Ambleside.
Armitt was born in Salford, Lancashire in 1851. She was one of three gifted daughters who were born to William and Mary Ann Armitt (née Whalley). All three girls wrote, and they all attended Islington House Academy, but each specialised in a different subject. This academy was in Salford and it trained people to teach along Pestalozzian principles. Sophia, who was born in 1847, took botany and art while her younger sister Annie Maria, who was born in 1850, studied English literature. Mary—who was known as Louie—was the youngest and excelled at music and natural history. She was educated at the Mechanics' Institute in Manchester as soon as she was of age.
The three sisters were all teenagers when their father died. They were well educated so they established a school at Eccles in Lancashire. The eldest child at the school was fourteen, which was only a year younger than Armitt. The three girls spent their spare time attending recitals, art exhibitions, and lectures. They wrote, sketched, and discussed natural history at meetings. Armitt and Sophie both discussed their ambitions with John Ruskin, who encouraged Sophie to study art but told Armitt not to write but to devote herself to women's activities. Luckily Armitt eventually ignored Ruskin's advice and began regular contributions to the Manchester City News in 1877. She was assisted in her studies by a scholarship from Trinity College, Cambridge[dubious – discuss] and by becoming a reader at the Bodleian Library in Oxford.
In 1886 Armitt and Sophie retired to Hawkshead, near where Annie was already living, and continued their cultural interests, talking to artists, writers and educationalists like Charlotte Mason and Frances Arnold. Mason, who ran a school for governesses, was publishing the Parents Review, and Mary contributed articles for it. By 1894 Annie was a widow and had moved in with her sisters and Armitt was so ill with heart trouble that she was prevented from travelling far. She mitigated this by joining the London Library. In 1897 she published Studies of Lakeland Birds, a book that gathered together articles from the Westmorland Gazette.
Armitt died in Rydal in 1911 and was buried in Ambleside. By then, her library included two earlier collections dating from 1828 and 1882. The latter was John Ruskin's Ambleside library, and the former was an early collection from the Ambleside Book Club, to which William Wordsworth had been a subscriber. The Armitt Library was officially opened in 1912. On 8 November 1912 a friend of the Armitts', Canon Hardwicke Rawnsley, who was to co-found the National Trust, read his poem in celebration. The poem starts:
As in some inland solitude a shell
Still gently whispers of its home, the deep,
So from the world of being beyond all sleep
Where those two happy sister spirits dwell...
The "two happy sister spirits" were Armitt, who had died the year before, and Sophie, who had died in 1908.
In 1912, Armitt's history of Grasmere Church was published posthumously.
In 1916, Willingham Franklin Rawnsley finished editing Armitt's notes on local history, which she had partially researched at Rydal Hall.
2014 data http://forebears.co.uk/surnames/armitt
1881-1901 data http://forebears.co.uk/surnames/armitt
Gedmatch kit for Susan Armitt is saved from Ancestry test autosomal DNA
Wikitree link below to Susan Armitt family tree which includes Ancestry autosomal DNA test
Heaton, Rushton Spencer, St. Lawrence Church http://www.rushtonspencer.info/index.htm
Origin of surname http://www.surnamedb.com/Surname/Armitt#ixzz4j8pty1TT
Mary Louisa Armitt wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mary_Louisa_Armitt
Wikitree Susan Armitt https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Armitt-8
You may find our other Guild websites of interest: