This record is held by East Sussex and Brighton and Hove Record Office (ESBHRO)

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Summary of contents


ACC5611: Messrs Fuller and Askew of Lewes, surveyors and architects books of reference and registers of plans, 18th century-1985, plans, 1856-1985, Lewes Co-operative Benefit Society c1891


ACC3412: William Figg and Son of Lewes, surveyors, papers, 1592-1858, books, 1806-1856, maps and plans, 18th - 19th centuries, other records, 1799-1866; Papers of George Fuller of Lewes, land surveyor and architect, 1866-1882


ACC5179: maps and plans collected and drawn by William Figg and Son of Lewes, surveyors, c1735-1852


ACC5500: sale particulars, 1800-1864 and acts of Parliament, 1770-1866 collected by William Figg and Son of Lewes, surveyors


ACC5744: records of William Figg and Son of Lewes, surveyors, 1797-1853, records of William Figg as agent for the County Fire Office, 1821-1852, records concerning Lewes Waterworks, 1831-1833, records of George Fuller of Lewes, land surveyor and architect, 1851-1913


ACC5287: copy photograph of William Figg the younger; nd [c1850-1866]


ACC3408: papers of Charles Steele of Lewes, 1871-1872

Date: 1592-1985
Held by: East Sussex and Brighton and Hove Record Office (ESBHRO), not available at The National Archives
Language: English

Fuller and Askew, Lewes, surveyors and architects

Physical description: 7 Subfonds
Access conditions:

Records are open for consultation unless otherwise indicated

Immediate source of acquisition:

The bulk of the Figgs' maps and plans were given to the Sussex Archaeological Society in 1956 and 1962 (SAS/ACC710 and 1100 - now ACC3412) and the remainder were purchased by ESRO in 1988 (ACC5179), 1989 (ACC5287), 1990 (ACC5500) and 1991 (ACC5744). The bulk of the Fullers' architectural drawings and papers were given to ESRO in 1986, 1988 and 1990 (ACC4602, ACC5077 - now ACC5611)

  • East Sussex
  • Land tenure
Administrative / biographical background:

William Figg of Lewes, baker, the son of William and Charity Figg, was born on 24 March 1741 and baptised at St John sub Castro Lewes on 13 April. He married Lucy Ridgeway (c1744-1823) by licence at St John sub Castro Lewes on 25 February 1770. In his will, dated 31 August 1797, he devised his two messuages in St John sub Castro (occupied by himself and John Leighton the younger) to his two sons, William (1770-1833) and Thomas (1771-1830), subject to the life interest of his wife. He was buried at St John on 1 February 1799 and his will was proved in the Prerogative Court of Canterbury (PCC) on 1 July 1799 (AMS 6326/26). His widow Lucy in her will, dated 18 June 1821, bequeathed her personal estate in trust for her sons William and Thomas; she was buried at St John on 22 November 1823 and her will was proved at Lewes on 4 December 1823 (W/A 74.964)


Their eldest son, William, was baptised at St John on 7 September 1770 and was married sometime between 1791 and 1799 to Susannah. He practised as a land surveyor at 52 High Street, Lewes and may have been trained by his neighbour, the noted cartographer Thomas Budgen (1765-1832) (J Farrant 'Sussex Depicted' Sussex Record Society 85 (2001) 79). His fourth son, William Figg the younger (1799-1866), who was born on 20 August 1799 and baptised at St Michael Lewes on 27 October, had joined him by 1823 and continued the business after his father retired in 1825. William the elder in his will, dated 4 July 1825, bequeathed his real estate to his son William and Henry Hurly of Lewes, banker; he was buried at St John on 4 December 1833 and the will was proved in PCC on 28 February 1834 (AMS 6326/27)


William the younger was an accomplished antiquary, a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries and a founder member of the Sussex Archaeological Society in 1846. He was also a good musician and composed several anthems for church music (G Holman Some Lewes Men of Note (1927)). He died unmarried at his house 174 High Street, Lewes on 7 April 1866 and was buried at St John sub Castro on 14 April 1866. In his will, dated 7 March 1866, he devised his real and personal estate to his brother John (1805-1869); the will and codicil were proved at the Lewes Probate Registry on 15 May 1866 (AMS 6326/28)


The surveying business had been acquired by a local land surveyor, George Fuller (1839-1890) of Fuller's Passage, 19 High Street, Lewes by 1870, presumably after the death of William's brother John in 1869 (he was buried at St John sub Castro on 18 December 1869) or possibly the death of George's father in 1867. The Figgs had collected earlier maps as an aid to their work and preserved them out of a conscious and declared love of their county and its past. Their working papers and collection of maps passed to George Fuller when he acquired the business and in 1870 he published a catalogue of the maps with the intention of making them available to the public for 'a small fee'


George, the son of John Fuller of All Saints [19 High Street], draper [died 24 May 1867, proved 29 Jun 1867 by Thomas Fuller of Lewes, Examining Officer of Customs and George Fuller of Lewes, land surveyor, estate under £3,000 - ACC5744/9 (4)], and his wife Maria, was baptised at All Saints on 2 August 1839. His parents had a further four children who were all baptised at All Saints - Emma (born 1 Nov 1834), 9 December 1834, Henry, 16 July 1836, Thomas, 25 September 1837 and John, 4 August 1843


By 1871 George Fuller, land surveyor and estate agent, was living at 3 St Anne's Terrace with his wife Jane (aged 26, born at Lenham, Kent) and their son Ernest H[enry] (5 months). However, by 1881 George, then described as an architect and surveyor, was living at 15 Cornfield Road, Eastbourne, with his wife Jane, their children Ernest H[enry], scholar, Thomas H (8, Lewes), scholar, Edith M (7, Lewes), scholar, Ada J (5, Lewes), scholar, George A[rnold] (2, Lewes), Henry V (1, Eastbourne) and servants Fanny Pumphrey (21, Barcombe), general servant, Edith Pumphrey (19, Barcombe), nurse and Charlotte Smith (13, Lewes), housemaid (RG 11/1038 folio 107)


George and Jane had six children baptised at Lewes: Ernest Henry at St Anne, 13 November 1870, Thomas Hugh at St Anne, surveyor, 2 June 1872, Edith Maria at All Saints, 1 February 1874, Ada Jane at All Saints, 1 May 1876, George Arnold at All Saints, 2 June 1878 and Florence Mary at St Anne, 5 June 1887


George Fuller continued to practice as a land surveyor and from about 1881 also as an architect until his death which was reported in the Sussex Express on 21 October 1890. The firm was then run by his eldest son Ernest Henry Fuller (1870- ) until about 1930 and then in partnership with his brother Henry V Fuller (1880- ) and latterly by Alan R Fuller in partnership with George Askew. The partnership was dissolved and the premises in Fuller's Passage sold in 1990

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