I’ve received this email from Steve Winnall, which sets out the issue re the link to the Vernon family:
Good to her from you and thanks for letting me know this potentially exciting news.
If we are descended from the Vernons then our closest ancestor is Mary Vernon (1590-1620), who was the great grandmother of Elizabeth Tristram who married William Winnall (1675-1768). So she would be seven generations before Edward Hill and Mary Winnall. It would be remarkable if the link had been passed down by word of mouth through to the present day. But then again as the Vernons were aristocrats if anything genealogically related were to have been passed down in that way then that would be it!
There’s no doubt the Pedmore Winnalls were linked to the Wolverley ones, if only we could find that piece of evidence that confirms or otherwise that William 1718-1794 was the William who married Phoebe Oldnall. I, like you, thought it wasn’t very likely that the son of a gent would marry the daughter of a nailer. But then I found out that centuries ago there were yeoman nailers in the area. And then there is the fact that John Oldnall left a will, which the great majority of people didn’t have the money to do back then. And there are other bits of circumstantial evidence, such as the first Winnall marriage in the Pedmore register being between Frances Winnall and William Bayliss in 1706. Frances was definitely the sister of William Winnall (1675-1768). The second Winnall marriage at Pedmore was between our William and Phoebe in 1745.
I think it likely that before arriving in Wolverley parish the Winnalls resided in the hamlet of Winnall on the Severn. If you google ‘Winnall Lodge’ you will find an archaeological report on the hunting lodge that belonged to the family that mentions the link between the family and place.
Incidentally, the gravestone of John Winnall and Mary Rushbury, and William Winnall and Elizabeth Tristram can be found in Wolverley churchyard. Remarkably it’s almost entirely legible. There are also memorials to the Tristrams both inside and outside Belbroughton Church.
Best of luck eliciting more info from your mother’s cousin and I look forward to hearing all about it.