Members of the Reffell family had lived in the rural country of Surrey since the 18th century and in 1861 there were still a number of families connected with the brewery trade living there. The senior member of the family was Elizabeth Reffell, the widow of John, but the rift which was to result in legal proceedings upon her death had already started. William Joseph Reffell was living in Gomshall Villa, next to the Black Horse pub & brewery with his wife Emma and children Josephine, William & Alfred. His brother Henry Reffell had already moved away and was living in Station Road in Reigate near to the Somers Arms. Also with him was wife Mary Ann and their three sons; John, William Robert & Arthur Henry, the future founders of the Reffell Brothers Brewery in Bexley.

Martha Reffell had never married and was living as a lodger in Shere Street, and was to die the following year. John Reffell was farming 65 acres at Gomshall. He had not married either. Henry Reffell was a gardener at Felday Moor. Sarah Reffell was aged 18 and working as a servant near Guildford, her parents were Samuel & Elizabeth from Bury St Edmunds.


Elizabeth Reffell, the widow of Joseph was still farming at Manor Farm in Horton, with her children; Mary Ann, James, Elizabeth & Edwin. Her other son Raymond Reffell was living on the High Road at Feltham in Middlesex working as a manure merchant. Living with him was his wife Ann and children Alfred, William, Raymond, Alice & Joseph.


John Alfred Reffell was living in one of Madam Caballero's properties, Rock Lodge in Tunbridge Wells. He was aged 36 and listed as a gentleman. With him was wife Ellen and children Emma, Alexander and Albert Edwin.


Samuel Reffell the head of the pipe makers family of Bury St Edmunds had died some five years earlier. However, his widow Elizabeth West was still running the business at 12 High Baxter Street. Helping her in the business was son Frederick and daughter Caroline. Other daughters Sarah Ann and Sophia were dressmakers and the youngest daughter Rosa Jane was still at school. In all there were eight daughters and five sons, five of whom were to die young. The eldest surviving son Samuel was living in Paddington.


In the town of Birmingham there was a family of spectacle or gunlock makers. The eldest at 75 was Joseph Reffell who was living at 105 Hampton Street with his son William. Nearby at Brearley Street was his other son John and his wife Ann.