The Jagos

Article written by Bryan Evans

The first Jagos came to Sandgate in the 1870s. James Jago (1840-1900) was born in Cork and came to Sandgate with his equally Irish wife as a “Coastguardsman ” via a stint at Dungeness.

All 4 children went to Sandgate School, as did I and my 3 Jago cousins. Of the 4, George (b.1899) was killed at the age of about 19 in WWI and Jim (b.1902) was in the Royal Navy – coming back to work at Caffyns garage and dying of TB in 1954 – neither married. Tom (b.1905-1971 ?) lived in Sandgate all his life and had 3 sons.

James was the grandfather of the 4 children in the photo. He and his wife had 10 children and the eldest, George (1870-1919), was the father of the children in the photo. The family lived at 1 Martello Terrace for over 50 years until my  (by then very elderly) grandmother came to live with us.

My mother (1900-1991) lived in Sandgate most of her life, though she worked and lived in Canada from 1919-1926 and then, having married my soldier father had spells in Palestine and India. Her other child, my sister Dorothy (1930-), has lived in the USA for over 50 years and teaches world history at a High School. (It was Valerie, one of her 3 daughters and who now lives in Alaska, who initially made contact with the Sandgate website about the Family group photo – above).

Throughout her life my mother was  known by everyone as Doll or Dolly. I grew up in Sandgate, living in the block of old people’s flats (my father was caretaker) called James Morris Dwellings (or The Buildings as I always called it.) It was pulled down in the mid 60s and the new Sandgate Library + new flats stand in its place.

My parents then lived in the council flats on the High Street (50A) until my father’s death in 1984 when my mother came to live with me. She died in January 1991. When she lived in Sandgate she well known as a source of local information and in fact gave a talk to the Sandgate Society on the Sandgate of her youth.

The Jago name is carried on in Folkestone by Michael (one of the 3 sons of Tom, the little boy in the picture) who has 5 sons, many grandchildren and some great grandchildren.