Found a very interesting on-line article by Family Search "Illegitimacy in England" and also very detailed comments (on Bastady and Illegitimacy) in a reference book (something of "biblical proportions")- "Ancestral Trails " by Mark D. Herber.
It is clear that a reason can be illegitimacy, but that this is just one of several reasons for not naming a father on a Birth Certificate, which "rules" change over the years.
Apologies to Judith for believing that illegitimacy was always the only reason.
I do however believe that my paternal grandmother was illegitimate, especially in the light of the bastady case brought by Laura in June 1887 against William Henry Doidge, who was ordered to pay 2 shillings a week until Florence was 13 - equivalent, it appears, to be over £9 per week in modern terms.
Laura was, from the references I found, quite entitled at the time to take her action in the Court and this could be against the father or (I assume if he had no money) his parents!!, so whether William Henry Doidge was the father or a parent is unclear.
There were known Doidge families in the area at the time, so will further research the Census years at the time to see if it is possible to narrow down who this William Henry Doidge may have been.
Thank you again for all your help. This Message Board (and responders) is an invaluable aid to research and is an excellent resource provided by the Society.
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