Prominent people from past times



Hereward the Wake

HEREWARD THE WAKE (flourished 1070) lead the Saxon uprising against the invaders after the Norman Conquest of 1066 although little factual information about his life survives. There seems no doubt that he did cause problems for the Normans but his reputation rests mainly with the many fictional accounts of his exploits, particularly the colourful descriptions of him ridding Bourne of the invading army while the story of his death in Bourne Wood at the hands of the enemy is undoubtedly apocryphal.

ROBERT MANNING (1264-1340) is perhaps the most notable of all our citizens in that he is credited with putting the speech of the ordinary people of his time into the recognisable form that we have today. He is best known as Robert de Brunne because of his long time residence as a canon at Bourne Abbey where he completed his life's work and in the process, popularised religious and historical material in a Middle English dialect that was easily understood by the people of his time. His best known work was Handlyng Synne, a book of great value because it gives glimpses into the ways and thoughts of our countrymen 600 years ago and even more, shows us the language then in common use. 

(flourished 1180) also worked at Bourne Abbey a century earlier than Robert Manning but his presence here has only been revealed during recent research. His homily collection known as The Ormulum has been well known to linguists and language historians ever since the 17th century but its source has only recently been established as Bourne Abbey. Orm's language provides a glimpse of the English vernacular of the time and before it was strongly influenced by the French. It is assumed that the manuscript remained at Bourne Abbey until the dissolution of the monasteries between 1536 and 1540 and after various owners, is now in the Bodleian Library at Oxford University.

WILLIAM CECIL (1520-1598) became the first Lord Burghley after serving Queen Elizabeth I for forty years, during which time he was the main architect of Britain's successful policies of that period, earning a reputation as a master of renaissance statecraft with outstanding talents as a diplomat, politician and administrator. He was born at a house in the town centre at Bourne that is now the Burghley Arms and a plaque on the outside reminds us of this event.

William Cecil portrait

JOB HARTOP (1550-1595) was a farmer's boy working on the land near Bourne but hankered after a life of adventure and ran away to sea when he was 12 years old. After a short apprenticeship with a gunpowder manufacturer in London, he signed on with the English admiral Sir John Hawkins and sailed the Spanish main in the company of the young Francis Drake. He was captured by the Spanish on his third voyage and spent ten years as a galley slave and thirteen years in a Spanish prison but managed to escape and make his way back to Bourne where he spent his final days recounting his adventures in the town's taverns, although the privations he suffered had taken their toll and he died at the age of 45.

WILLIAM TROLLOPE (1562-1637) was a prominent landowner whose ancestors settled in the Bourne area from County Durham in the mid-16th century and who increased his fortune considerably through land acquisition but became one of our most eminent philanthropists. He left two important bequests in his will, firstly an endowment to establish a free grammar school which marked a new important phase in local education for the town and secondly sufficient money to build almshouses for six poor, aged men. Both properties survive today although largely rebuilt.

ROBERT HARRINGTON (1589-1654) made large bequests to Bourne from which the community benefits to this day. Legend has it that he walked to London to seek his fortune and was most successful in his endeavours and when he died, he remembered his home town by leaving shops and dwelling houses in the Leytonstone area "for the benefit of his own people", namely the citizens of Bourne. The charity established in his name is by far the greatest currently administered by Bourne United Charities and fittingly, Harrington Street was named in his memory.

Dr WILLIAM DODD (1729-1777), was an Anglican clergyman, a man of letters and a forger. He was the son of the Rev William Dodd, Vicar of Bourne from 1727-56, graduating with distinction from Clare College, Cambridge, and then moved to London where his extravagant lifestyle landed him in debt and worried his friends who persuaded him to mend his ways and so he decided to take holy orders and was ordained in 1751. He became a popular and fashionable preacher but was always short of money and in an attempt to rectify his depleted finances, forged a bond in the sum of 4,200. He was found out, prosecuted and sentenced to death and publicly hanged at Tyburn on 27th June 1777. 

BRYAN BROWNING (1773-1856), the architect, is best remembered for his design of Bourne Town Hall, built in 1821 by public subscription and still in use today. He was also responsible for the House of Correction at Folkingham and the workhouses at Bourne, Stamford and Spalding. Browning was a dedicated villager whose family made their mark on Thurlby over a period of two centuries and several members of his family are buried in the churchyard.

JOHN LELY OSTLER (1811-1859) was born into a distinguished family at Grantham who claimed the celebrated 17th century Dutch artist Sir Peter Lely as an ancestor. He did not move to Bourne until a few years before his early death at the age of 48 but in that time, he became one of the biggest land and property owners in the district, supporting charitable causes, including schools. Such was his reputation, that an elaborate monument was erected in the market place in his memory and can still be seen in the town cemetery.

ROBERT MASON MILLS (1819-1904) realised the market potential of the fresh water supply freely available in Bourne and extracted it from underground springs and sold it world-wide. His aerated water business became part of the town's prosperity during the 19th century, giving employment to many and earning his business a Royal Warrant for supplying Queen Victoria's son, the Duke of Connaught, who bought it for its medicinal and health giving qualities. 

Robert Mason Mills

Charles Worth portrait

CHARLES WORTH (1825-1895), son of a local solicitor, was born at Wake House, North Street, now used as a community centre. He left Bourne when still a boy to seek his fortune in Paris where he became a world renowned designer of women's fashion and the founder of haute couture. His reputation was such that the French government awarded him the Legion of Honour and when he died, 2,000 people, including the President of the Republic, attended his funeral.

SIR GEORGE WHITE (1840-1912) was a cobbler's son who was born above his father's shop in West Street, Bourne, and left home at 16 to work at a boot and shoe factory in Norwich but soon made his mark in business, the Baptist movement and in public life, becoming an alderman and Sheriff of Norwich and later M P for North West Norfolk, a seat which he held for twelve years until his death at the age of 72. He was knighted for his public service in 1907.

WILLIAM WHERRY (1841-1915) was one of the most unselfish men to serve this town. He thought so much of his fellow man that he continually strived to make life better and the burden he took upon himself might well have hastened his end. He was forced to retire from public life because of ill health at the age of 74 when his numerous offices and positions of responsibility numbered almost 100. If Bourne needs an example of a man of stature, then he is the one.

William Wherry

Robert Gardner, artist

ROBERT A GARDNER (1850-1926) was a bank manager in Bourne and also a talented artist whose work was exhibited in the Royal Academy. He never aspired to public office but his interest in the community inevitably resulted in a number of appointments, notably as a magistrate and chairman of the Bourne bench. But he is best remembered for his paintings and many of his works survive to this day, mostly in private ownership although some can be found hanging in the Red Hall.

FREDERIC MANNING (1882-1935) wrote what is considered to be one of the finest novels dealing with the Great War of 1914-18 and much of this work was completed while staying at the Bull Hotel in Bourne, now the Burghley Arms. Manning was an Australian who chose to live here after a spell at Edenham where he stayed with the vicar, the Rev Arthur Galton, who had been his tutor. Her Privates We was at first published anonymously, to much critical acclaim, but eight years after his death, it was published in 1943 under his own name and is still in print almost 70 years later. In the book, Manning acknowledged his affection for this town by calling his hero Private Bourne. 

Lilian Wyles

LILIAN WYLES (1885-1975) was a major influence in the acceptance of women into the police force. She was the only daughter of the Bourne brewer, Joseph Wyles, and after a spell of duty on the streets of London with the new women patrols to assist young girls at risk, was promoted inspector in 1922, becoming the first woman officer of the Metropolitan Police's CID department

CHARLES SHARPE (1889-1963) was a farmer's boy from Pickworth, near Bourne, who ran away from home and joined the army. During the Great War of 1914-18, an act of conspicuous bravery earned him the Victoria Cross, Britain's highest decoration for valour, and he subsequently inspired many young men to enlist. On return to civilian life, he worked at a number of jobs, notably as a physical training instructor to boys at the Hereward Camp approved school who regarded him as a role model.

Charles Sharpe VC

Horace Stanton

HORACE STANTON (1897-1977), a local solicitor, gave a lifetime of service to this town and it is to him that we are indebted for the War Memorial and its gardens and the Abbey Lawn. He also commanded the district's Home Guard detachment during the Second World War. There were few aspects of life in the town that he did not influence and the high esteem in which he was held was echoed at his funeral service when the vicar, the Rev Gordon Lanham said: "If you would see his monument, look around."

Dr JOHN (ALISTAIR) GALLETLY (1899-1993) was a general practitioner of the old school who gave medical advice and dispensed medicine to the inhabitants of this town from his surgery in North Road for more than 40 years. He was also one of the most respected and interesting characters to live in Bourne and when he retired in 1969, tributes were paid to his dedicated work as the town's most eminent family doctor.

Dr John Alistair Galletly

Raymond Mays

RAYMOND MAYS (1899-1980) achieved fame in the world of international motor racing, on and off the track. After a successful  career as a driver, he opened workshops in Bourne where he developed the BRM, the revolutionary car that eventually became the first all-British model to win the world championship in 1962. Mays, who lived at Eastgate House in Bourne all his life,  was honoured with a CBE in 1978 for his services to motor racing.

LORENZO WARNER (1901-1995) started his working life as a newspaper delivery boy but the business he founded continues in Bourne today as Warners Midlands plc, one of the most prestigious printing companies in the East Midlands and still run as a family concern. He was also active in many areas of community life including the Methodist Church, Bourne Cricket Club and Bourne Urban District Council, becoming their chairman for the year 1970-71.

Lorry Warner

Jack Burchnell

JACK BURCHNELL (1909-1973) was among the last of the old style councillors who put the people  before personal gain and reputation. He devoted more than a quarter of a century to this town and was responsible for instilling a new sense of pride in the community by supporting both the Civic Sunday and the Civic Ball, events that survive to this day, as well as saving the Red Hall which would have been demolished but for his intervention.


Illustrated biographies of all those mentioned above
may be found on the CD-ROM
 A Portrait of Bourne


Other lives profiled on the CD-ROM are those of

Ron Alexander (1920-1998)
The Earl of Ancaster (1907-1983)
John Robert Arnold (1885-1965)
Geoffrey Atkins (1930-1990)
Thomas Whyment Atkinson (1874-1954)
William Bampton (1787-1830)
Harry Barker (1923-2008)
Harry Barnatt (1881-1977)
Thomas Barsby (1840-1918)
Terry Bates (1936-2009)
Thomas Moore Baxter (1854-1920)
Cecil Walker Bell (1868-1947)
George E Bett (1913-56)
George Bettinson (1819-1885)
Clarence Binns (1897-1975)
Malcolm Boggitt (1940-2008)
Howard Bostock (1924-98)
Henry Bott (1810-1888)
Cuthbert Bradley (1861-1941)
Grace Bristow MBE (1910-87)
Edward Browning (1816-1882)
Mary Ann Buckberry (1817-1916)
James Watson Burdwood (1837-1916)
Henry Burtt (1892-1987)
Trissie Carlton (1907-1999)
The Rev James Carvath (1854-1929)
Reg Chapman (1912-1979)
Maria Christian (1855-1921)
Edward Clark (1866-1938)
Marjorie Clark (1919-2007)
Cyril Clay BEM (1923-2012)
Everitt D Cooke (1895-1964)
Kate Cooke MBE (1896-1978)
Kath Cox (1911-2008)
Joseph J Davies (1856-1920)
L R W Day (1900-1989)
Thomas Deacon (1788-1860)
Louis Decamp (1919-99)
Catherine Digby (1773-1836)
The Rev Joseph Dodsworth (1797-1877)
John Dove & family (fl. 18th-19th Century)
Mrs Pat Edmunds (1914-2008)
Joseph Ellicock (1842-1909)
John Evans (1817-1899)
Charles Everard (1847-1907)
Don Fisher (1933-2011)
Joseph Tye Flatters (1841-1885)
Ernest Foley (1868-1926)
William Redmile Garner (1841-1928)
Geoffrey of Bourn (fl. 1292-1303)
Richard Boaler Gibson (1879-1958)
William Gibson (1849-1885)
Dr John Gilpin MBE (1864-1943)
Thomas Glendening (1838-1899)
James Goodyear (1810-1871)
John Grummitt (1912-72)
Sir Edward Harwood (1586-1632)
Sir Maurice Heath (1909-1998)
William Hemsell (1898-1959)
Frederick Hinson (1837-1910)
Thomas Hinson (1816-1902)
Cecil Thomas Hodgkinson (1898-1979)
Dr George Holloway (1905-1967)
The Rev Samuel Hopkinson (1754-1841)
Edwin Barnett Horn (1914-2005)
The Rev Charles Horne (1876-1951)
Jeremiah Ives (1692-1741)
John Jackson (1585-1612)
William Augustus Johnson (1777-1863)
Tom Jones (1915-1993)
Edgar Judge (1862-1951)
Henry Kelham (1845-1916)
George William Knipe (1917-1995)
John Layton (1831-1905)
Sir Kenneth Lewis (1916-97)
Tom Lyall (1895-1967)
Charles Mapperson (1830-1918)
Charles Pask Matthews (1886-1956)
The Mawby family (fl.1780-1890)
George Henry Mays (1859-1926)
Thomas William Mays (1856-1934)
Viscount Midleton (1903-1988)
Jack Moody BEM (1906-1992)
Frederick Nash (1858-1926)
Oger the Breton (fl. 1086)
Mary Parker (1926-2004)
Colonel William Parker (1824-1909)
Richard Newton Pattison (1879-1959)
John Peacock (1839-1922)
John Thomas Pearce (1852-1905)
Thomas Pearce (1820-1919)
Arnold Pick (1845-1891)
Eric Pick (1925-2012)
Ida Pick MBE (1888-1975)
Thomas Leonard Pick (1909-2004)
Thomas Pilkington (1800-1889)
Pochin family (fl. 18th-19th Century)
Thomas Rawnsley (1755-1826)
Jane Redmile (1800-1883)
William Redshaw (1856-1943)
Douglas Reeson (1918-2010)
Richard Reeve (1936-1987)
Thomas Rickard (1865-1931)
Harry Ringrose (1881-1979)
George Ernest Robinson (1901-2000)
Arthur Saul (1856-1920)
Dick Sellars (1920-2010)
Robert James Shilcock (1823-1908)
John Baxter Shilcock (1850-1927)
Annie Shillaker (1862-1937)
Harry Shillaker (1865-1924)
Hugh Delaine-Smith MBE (1920-95)
Harry Garwood Sneath (1887-1979)
Henry Andrews Sneath (1860-1931)
Lewis Sommerfield (1924-2012)
Frederick Sones (1871-1934)
Alfred Stubley (1859-1932)
Ashby Swift (1882-1941)
John T Swift (1855-1939)
Charles Tennyson (1784-1861)
Florence Tipler (1905-1986)
George Walter Todd (1873-196)
James Toulson (1869-1954)
Trollope family (fl. 16th-20th Century)
William Walpole (1843-1907)
Albert E K Wherry OBE (1874-1962)
Sir George White (1840-1912)
Dr Francis Willis (1718-1807)
Lawrence Percy Wilson (1918-2005)
Harold Withers (1904-1986)
Norma Woolley (1934-2007)
John Worsdall (1842-1923)
William Worth (1789-1878)
John Henry Wright (1919-2010)


Edward Andrew, Thomas Ball, J W E (Bill) Banks, Dr George Blasson, William Bradley, John Branston, Willerton Brown, Mary Buckberry, Joseph Burn, John Campbell, William Castledine, Frederick Clarke, Ray Cliffe, George Collinson, Albert Dainty, Harry Dowsett, Leslie Ferriby, James Edward Fisher, Reginald Foster, Eve Frazer, Henry Goodyear, Harry Goodyer, Roland Green, Edward Grummitt, William Hall, John Hinson, Hugh and Susannah Hobson, William Kingston, William Lister, John Lunn, Hugh Mansfield, John Mansfield, Jean McKenzie, Thomas Measures, Birt Morris, George Octavius Munton, William Nowell, Frederick John North,  Joshua North, William Pearce, Stanley Pease, Thomas Pick, William Earle Pick, John Pool, Thomas Revill, Eric Rickard, John Roberts, Eunice Rogan, Tony Rudd, William Scott, Thomas Shippey, Hannah Smith, Reg Sones, Ernest Spridgeon, Alec Stokes, Edward Stringer, Basil Stroud, Stuart Stroud, Henry Stubley, Cecil Sweetnam,  Edward Trollope, George Tory, William and Annie Townson, Joseph B Walker and William Welldon.


This includes information about Trooper Emminson Bell, Private Edward Cliffe, Private George Cornwall, Driver Joseph Dickens, Private George Drakard, Trooper George Franks, Private William Glenn,  Quarter-Master Sergeant Harrison, Lance Corporal Herbert Marsh, Private A Percival, Lance Corporal H Leslie Pike, Private Bennett Rogers*, Gunner Charles Stuffins, Private S Tipler* and Private George Tyers. (* Denotes later killed in action).


This includes correspondence from Private Albert J Adamson, Private John Bannister, Private Martin Barnes, Private Vernon Bradley, Private Ernest Bull, Private Joseph Bullimore, Lance Corporal Oliver Davies, Private Victor Davies, Private W Davies, Private Fred Fisher, Trooper Fred Flatters, Gunner Charles Garfoot, Gunner Edward Garfoot, Private Stephen Grummitt, Driver Fred Hinson, Private W Lane* (letter of condolence), Sergeant Cedric W Lloyd, Private Percy Lunn, Private Percy Milan, Private E Moisey, Sapper George North, Private T Phillips, Private Harold Robinson, Private George Sherwin*, Lance Corporal H H Steel, Private J Stevenson*, Private S Tipler, Lance Corporal Percy J Vickers, Private W Watts*, Corporal Arthur Webster, Private J W Wyles and Sergeant F A Yates.
(* Denotes later killed in action).


Andrew R Agnew, Mary Atkinson, John Baker, John William Beck, Joseph Bellamy, Joseph Bland, William Bradley, Richard Brightman, Charles A Brown, Frederick Brown, John Burbidge, John Burton, William Cartwright, Ada Clark, James Clarke, Mark Clay, William Colby, Jane Crampton, William Downes, Elizabeth Faulkner, Nicholas Fowler, John Gibson, John Grummitt, Joseph Haddon, Sarah Jane Halford, Henry Handley, William Hardwicke, James Harris, Thomas and Anna Hilton, Richard Jackson, Elizabeth Johnson, Frank Jones, Eleanor Kelly, Albert Kettle, George and Mary Kyme, John Lawson, William Henry Marshall, William Edward Matthews, John Modd, Frank Newcombe, Joseph Ogden, George and Charlotte Parker, William and Jane Pheasant, Alfred Lawrence Platt, William Reeve, Frederick Rouse, John de Rowe, Thomas Seerle, John and Charlotte Smith, Rose Sneath, John Starkey, William Thiselton, Fred Vickers, Frederick Walker, Thomas Wallis, Judith Weaving, Elizabeth Whitfield, Priscilla Woodward and James Wyles.


Francis Allam, Abraham Atkins (alias William Matkins), Henry Barnes (alias Barns and Baines), Davy Bennett, Thomas Bennett (alia Tuck), James Brown (alias Baker), John Buck, Augustine Chamberlain, Perkins Cobley, John Close, William Cox, William Crust, Henry Dawson, Robert Elderkin, Ephraim Francis, George Gardiner, Mary Glenn, James Gray, William Haxey, James Johnson, William Knight, Edward Marvin, Sarah Marvin, John Marvin, John Moisey, Thomas Moisey, Charles Pell, Charles Pinfold, Samuel Preston, John Roberts, Susannah Rogers, William Scott, William Shaw, John Simpson, Thomas Sims, John Stapleford, Joseph Stimson, Thomas Stimson, John Stubley, John Thompson, Henry Thorpe, William Wells and John Whitacre (alias Whitaker).


Henrietta Arden, Hugh Arnold, Millie Asher, Rebecca Bains, Jane Barwiss, Frances Sarah Bellamy, Thomas Booth, John Boyer, Sarah Bromley, Emma Bullymore, Mary Burton, Tom Cunnington, Ethel Darnes, John Dring, Joseph Eason, William Elston, Thomas Fletcher,  George Foulds, Rachel Gedney, Elizabeth Gillson, Mary Green, James Griffin, Naomi Grummitt, George Hardwick, Samuel Harvey, John Meredith Hazelgreave, A Hewitt, the Rev John James Hodgson, Charlotte Hubbard, John Hudson, Edward Jackson, Maurice Jackson, Michael George Joyce, Thomas Kitchen, Frank Lank, Rose Ellen Makings, Digby Marsh, James Measures, Joseph Measures, Edward Munton, Mary Ann Musson, Mary Elizabeth Nicholls, Ann Nixon, Joseph Norman, William Norman, John Northern, John Osgothorpe, James Arthur Parker, Charles Pick, Robert Pickering, Ernest Woodward Pocklington, John Pullen,  Campain Redmile, William Reed, James Rice, John William Rix, Edward Robinson, William Rodgers, Eleanor Rose, John Sandall, Lewis Sardeson, Albert Saxby, John Scotney, Josiah Sharpe, Thomas Shelton, Charles Smith, Clara Jane Smith, Helen Phyllis Smith, Thomas Smith, Thomas Stevenson, Henry Stubley, May Victoria Stubley, William Sturges, Ann Thurlby, William Todd, Mary Twitchell, John Usher, Thomas Wilkinson, James Wilson, Albert Woolley and James Young.


Priscilla Boor, Henry Greenwood, Elizabeth Gunn, Henry Hewerdine, Edward Hubbard, William Marriott, Charles Moisey, John Morris, Marie Nicholls, William Palmer, Susannah Esther Pepper, Martha Pullen, Thomas Redmile, W H Richards, Betsy Rouse, Samuel Smith, William
Todd and Arthur Young.

Entries concerning all of the above can be found on the CD-ROM
 A Portrait of Bourne

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