Ada & Thomas Reynolds – servant children

character-ada1Ada Reynolds – A Maid Servant
Ada Reynolds, born 1850, is the granddaughter of Mary Wright, Lady Elizabeth Havington’s maid. Ada works in the Havingtons’ town house in London and is rarely able to visit her home. Unlike Elizabeth’s privileged life, Ada works long, arduous hours under the constant eye of the housekeeper.However, Ada is mainly content, as she has a clean bed, food, clothes and the chance of promotion through the servants’ ranks. The students will learn about the hierarchy of the servants’ hall and the various maids’ roles in the household e.g. maid-of-all-work, nursery maid and ladies dresser.Below are the many artefacts that your students can interact with to gain a better understanding of ‘life below stairs’. There will also be an opportunity to dress in Ada’s clothes and do the school’s washing!


Thomas Reynolds – A Servant / Hall Boy
Thomas Reynolds, born 1847, is the grandson of Mary Wright, Lady Elizabeth’s maid. Thomas lives and works at the Havington country estate as a hall boy. His job is to run errands for the butler and footman, to do the dirtiest and heaviest jobs such as chopping wood, cleaning the servants’ boots and shoes, shovelling coal, taking the rubbish out and delivering messages or post to the nearby village. In the evening, he sleeps in a foldaway camp-bed in the corridor. Thomas, unlike his sister Ada, gets to see his family on Sundays. He is also fairly content with his life and dreams of becoming a footman, and eventually a ButlerThrough Thomas your students will interact with the artefacts below and have an opportunity to try on his work clothes. They will also discover the other jobs a boy like Thomas a boy like Thomas would have done on a large country estate.