What’s in a name

What’s in a Name

Im often asked where the name “Vergette” comes from and so I thought I would start this blog with an explanation.

Meet William Vergette

This is William, for as long as I can remember his picture hung in my Grandmother’s house. I remember asking her about him and being told that he was my ancestor. Being only very young, I had no idea what an ancestor was, but it sounded a bit like Aunt so I guessed it meant a relative.


My grandmother told me of a French man coming to England who’s name was William Vergette. He was a Huguenot and had escaped from France where he was in danger of being executed. He settled near Peterborough where he began farming. *Successive generations ran and expanded the farm until my Great Grandfather, having no male heirs to pass it to, sold it and retired.


My grandmother always felt it was grossly unfair that she had not been able to keep the name of Vergette when she married. So when it came to thinking of a name for the business it seemed appropriate, in honour of William and my Grandmother, to name our company Vergette and so carry on the family name.


*The farm part is definitely true, but a bit of research has shown we could also be descended from French prisoners of war who were made to dig ditches. So as to whether this enigmatic man truly is a relative I doubt I shall ever find out. But as he smiles down from my wall, whether he was a fenland ditch digger or middle class artisan,  I hope he likes what we are doing and I shall always strive to make him proud.




2 thoughts on “What’s in a name

  1. Oh I didnt know you had a blog.
    Loved this story. Apparently I am descended from Romany gypsies if you got back far enough but then my sister was told we had italian ancestors which i suppose could be the same thing(ish) and then there was talk of us having Jewish roots. I quite like the idea of a mysterious background rather than hunting down the truth. I expect it would be quite dull in real life so if you want your ancestors to be a persecuted Hugenot rather thana French prisoner of war whose to argue. Although saying that a French prisoner of war could be quite romantic!!!!!!

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