Thomas Cave was a house painter, plumber and glazier in Southampton in the 1830s and early 1840s. He moved to the town from Winchester in March 1830, with premises originally in Bedford Terrace, and later at 69 High Street. In 1847 he moved to new premises at 33 French Street. By the mid 1840s he is trading as a lead, glass, oil and colour merchant. His private residence from the early 1850s was 32 (later renumbered 49) Bugle Street.
Politically he was active in the Liberal cause. He was appointed a guardian of the poor for St Michael's parish in April 1861. He died, unmarried, at his residence on 11 April 1872 in his 72nd year. His effects were valued for probate at 'under £1,500' - a not inconsiderable sum. He left property in French Street (including Fives Court) and Bugle Street, together with the Ship Inn in Stockbridge.
He was a member of the Cave family of Winchester, in which city he was born c.1801. His father, John Cave (1773-1840) was himself a house painter, son of William (senior) Cave and younger brother to William (junior) and James, famous decorators, artistic craftsmen and painters in 18th and early 19th century Winchester. He was uncle to the Southampton house painter Charles Anthony Vaughan. Both of Thomas's parents - John and Ann (nee Vinn) - were from long-established Roman Catholic families in Winchester and their son continued in the faith. His house in Bugle Street lay close to St Joseph's Roman Catholic Church, where he worshipped. The house was bequeathed in his will to the Catholic priest-in-charge, Father Robert Mount, who was his sole executor. The French Street property was left to a nephew, Thomas Bernard Vaughan.

Further reading:
‘Bedford Mews and Southampton Riding School: a mid-nineteenth century equestrian enclave in Carlton Place’. By R Preston Southampton Occasional Papers no. 2 (Appendix 2 on Charles Anthony Vaughan.)


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