Chairpersons of the Epsom Bench of Magistrates 1870-1984



Interior of Epsom Magistrates Court c.1919
Interior of Epsom Magistrates Court in 1919
This photo was taken at the award ceremony following the Epsom Riot in 1919
Image courtesy of Bourne Hall Museum (Opens in a new window).

Index

Click on the name to jump to the relevant entry
[Content]

ANDREWS, Mrs Hilda
BRAITHWAITE, Basil
CARTER, Robert
COOK, Donald G
CRUMP, Jack Cyril Glass
FARMER, William Robert Gamul Godfrey
LONGHURST, Stanley Charles
NICHOLLS, Alfred William (Updated 27/02/2012)
NORTHEY, Edward Richard
O'HEA, Ignatius John 'Jack'
PERCEVAL, Charles George 7th Earl Of Egmont
PLUMMER, Seymour Douglas
SEYMOUR, Basil Frederick
TRITTON, Arthur Henry
TUDOR REES, John Thomas
VINCENT, Rev. Sir William
WEST, Charles Robert Roberts

Content


ROBERT CARTER (1794-1878)
Joint Chairman 1870-77


Robert Carter
Robert Carter

There is not a great deal of available information on Robert Carter (partially due to the name being so common), but, unlike some of the other Chairmen, he was a long-standing Epsom resident.

Robert was born on 30 July 1794 in Croydon, son of James and Susanna (née Elliott), and was a haberdasher who progressed into shipping. He was High Sheriff of Surrey in 1868. His first wife was Elizabeth Starey, whom he married in Leamington, Warwickshire in 1821: she died on 3 June 1852, aged 59. Secondly, in 1854 he married Maria, who died on 21 January 1861, aged 58. Maria was originally named Harrison and had been widowed twice. Her first husband was John Alderson, who died before 1841, and the second was William Bolton, who died before 1851.

For about 32 years Robert lived at The Grove in Church Street, Epsom, has been converted into flats. Sales particulars of 1879 describe it as a moderately sized mansion with secluded and finely timbered grounds of nearly 13 acres.

The Grove as it is today.
The Grove as it is today.
Image courtesy of Brian Bouchard © 2012

He also had a house in Palmeira Square, Hove, Sussex - in 1845 it was Number 6 and by the 1870s it was Number 5. Both houses still stand, although Numbers 4 and 5 have been amalgamated to make a block of flats. (Almost all of these lovely old houses in Hove are now converted into flats.)

5 and 6 Palmeira Square, Hove.
5 and 6 Palmeira Square, Hove.
Number 5 is to the right of the porch.
Photo courtesy of Linda Jackson © 2012

Palmeira Square general view.
Palmeira Square general view.
Photo courtesy of Linda Jackson © 2012

Robert died at The Grove on 23 May 1878 and was buried with his wives in a tomb in St Martin's Churchyard. There is a memorial to Elizabeth Carter inside the church, which reads

Sacred to the memory of
ELIZABETH
for upwards of thirty one years the beloved wife
of ROBERT CARTER Esqr.
who died June 3rd, 1852,
aged 59 years. A sincere Christian, a devoted wife and faithful
friend. A benevolent neighbour.
she was loved and respected in life and in her
death universally lamented.
Her earthly remains are interred in the family vault
in this Churchyard

I can find no evidence that there were any children.


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EDWARD RICHARD NORTHEY (c.1795-1878)
Joint Chairman 1870-77


Edward Richard Northey
Edward Richard Northey

Edward Northey and his family are well documented elsewhere on this website.


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CHARLES GEORGE PERCEVAL, 7th EARL OF EGMONT (1845-97)
Chairman 1878-89


Charles George Perceval, 7th Earl Of Egmont
Charles George Perceval, 7th Earl Of Egmont

Charles George Perceval's personal connection with Surrey was that he inherited the Nork Park Estate at Banstead from his uncle, the 6th Earl of Egmont.

Admiral George James Perceval, 6th Earl of Egmont as a boy
Admiral George James Perceval, 6th Earl of Egmont as a boy.
Image source: Wikimedia Commons

Charles probably preferred Sussex, but we are getting ahead of ourselves. He was born on 15 June 1845 at Calverton, Buckinghamshire, where his father, Reverend the Honourable Charles George Perceval (1796-1858), was Rector; his mother was Frances Agnes Trevelyan (1809-73), daughter of the Archdeacon of Taunton.

All Saints Church, Calverton
All Saints Church, Calverton.
Photograph by Cameraman © and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence
Image source www.geograph.org.uk

Charles George Junior was educated at University College, Oxford and became a law student at Inner Temple, but I can find no evidence that he ever practised law. By 1871 he was already a magistrate and, from 1874-5, Member of Parliament for Midhurst, West Sussex; he was also a Captain in the Royal Buckinghamshire Yeomanry. In 1869 he had married Lucy King, daughter of a Billingshurst grocer, which may not have pleased the Perceval family greatly, since they did not habitually marry into 'trade'. Nevertheless, recent history tells us that grocers' daughters can do very well for themselves and Lucy certainly did. Twice. (Note: there are several very good photographs of Lucy on the National Portrait Gallery website.)

Charles and Lucy did not have any children, but they acted as parents to Lucy's niece, Lilian Mabel King (born in 1884 in Brighton). Her parents were Lucy's brother, James, and his wife Sarah, who had quite a number of children. James was the Chief Sanitary Inspector for Hove and he died in the County Lunatic Asylum, Wivelsfield (Haywards Heath) in 1888. Sarah presumably could not cope and sent young Lilian to her sister, to give her a good start in life.

The Earls of Egmont were abysmal at producing direct heirs. In 1874 the 6th Earl died childless and his title and estates passed to his nephew, Charles George Perceval Junior. One of the other estates was Cowdray Park in Midhurst and this is probably where the 7th Earl's heart lay. The 6th Earl had bought it as a wreck in 1843, but the seventh tinkered with it for years and rebuilt the keeper's lodge, which became the present-day Cowdray House. In 1890 he sold the Nork Estate and returned to Sussex. He died at Cowdray on 5 September 1897 and was succeeded by a cousin, Augustus Arthur Perceval.

In 1898 the widowed Lucy married Alfred Brisco (born in 1851), a Cumbrian landowner, barrister and stockbroker, son of Sir Robert Brisco; they lived at 7 Eaton Square, Mayfair. Alfred died on 14 December 1927 and Lucy on 1 June 1932.

As a postscript, in 1904 Lilian Mabel King married Sir Hylton Ralph Brisco, Alfred's nephew: they were divorced in 1916. Sir Hylton subsequently married and divorced again and was presumed accidentally drowned, gone overboard in his pyjamas, when he disappeared from a cruise liner near Colombo in 1922. Lilian remarried and died in 1939.


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CAPTAIN WILLIAM ROBERT GAMUL GODFREY FARMER (1838-1910)
Chairman 1890-1910


Portrait of William Robert Gamul  Godfrey Farmer
Portrait of William Robert Gamul Godfrey Farmer.
Image courtesy of www.nonsuchmansion.com and used with permission.

William Farmer
William Farmer

Captain William Robert Gamul Godfrey Farmer (Grenadier Guards) was born in London on 12 July 1838, son of William Francis Gamul Farmer (died 1860) and Matilda Wilkinson (died 1889). The family 'seat' was Nonsuch Park, Cheam, which had been purchased in 1799 by William Francis's father, Samuel (1747-1839), MP for Huntingdon 1809-1818 and in the business of scarlet dyeing.

William Francis Gamul  Farmer
Portrait of William Francis Gamul Farmer.
Image courtesy of www.nonsuchmansion.com and used with permission.

The Mansion House, Nonsuch Park
The Mansion House, Nonsuch Park.
Photograph by Dr Neil Clifton © and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence
Image source www.geograph.org.uk

WFG Farmer was a graduate of Trinity College, Cambridge, magistrate, Deputy Lieutenant for Surrey and High Sheriff of Surrey in 1849. His son, WRGG Farmer, followed much the same path - educated at Trinity, Deputy Lieutenant and High Sheriff in 1877.

In 1861 in Dublin, when he was in the Grenadier Guards, he married Charlotte Maria Williams (died 1906) of Dublin Castle and Phoenix Park. They had one daughter, Alice Matilda Mary (born 1863), who married the Hon. Francis Lionel Lydstone Colborne. WRG Farmer died in Mayfair on 19 May 1910. The Colbornes continued to live at Nonsuch Park. Francis died in 1924 and Alice in 1936.


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THE REVEREND SIR WILLIAM VINCENT MA (1834-1914)
Chairman 1911-14


The Reverend Sir William Vincent
The Reverend Sir William Vincent

William Vincent was born in Hughenden, Buckinghamshire on 20 September 1834, son of the Reverend Sir Frederick Vincent, sometime Rector of Slinfold in Sussex, and Louisa Norris. He was educated at Marlborough College and graduated as a Master of Arts from Christ Church, Oxford; in 1864 he became Rector of Postwick in Norfolk.

All Saints, Postwick
All Saints, Postwick.
Photograph by Evelyn Simak © and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence
Image source www.geograph.org.uk

In 1860 William had married Lady Margaret Erskine, daughter of the 12th Earl of Buchan, and they had one son, Francis Erskine Vincent (1869-1935), who succeeded to the baronetcy on the death of his father. Margaret died in 1872 and in 1882 William married Hester Clara Stubbs (née Hawkshaw, born 1851), daughter of the Rev Edward Burdett Hawkshaw of Weston- under - Penyard, Herefordshire. Her first husband, whom she married in 1877, was Bengal army veteran Major-General William Henry Stubbs, born in about 1826, who died in Germany just weeks after the wedding.

William Vincent became the 12th Baron Vincent of Stoke D'Abernon, Surrey in 1883 and moved into the family seat, D'Abernon Chase. He was at one time Chairman of Surrey County Council and on the Management Board of the Royal Victoria Homes, near Bristol, which were reformatories for inebriates.

William and Hester had two daughters, who were Lillian Katherine Hawkshaw Vincent (1883-1966, married Admiral Sir Henry Bertram Pelly CB MVO, 1867-1942, who was also a magistrate for Surrey) and Dorothy Muriel Crichton Vincent (1884-1937, married Philip Henry Ashworth, 1885-1949).

William died on 16 February 1914 at the Manor House, Stoke D'Abernon and Hester on 7 November 1934, by which time she was living in East Horsley.

Sir William with his son, Francis Erskine Vincent
Sir William with his son, Francis Erskine Vincent.
Image copyright of Rob Bristow (great-grandson of Francis) © 2012 and used by permission.


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BASIL BRAITHWAITE (1845-1918)
Chairman 1915-18


Basil Braithwaite
Basil Braithwaite

There is already a biography of Basil Braithwaite on this website.


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CHARLES ROBERT ROBERTS WEST (1849-1934)
Chairman 1919-24



Charles Robert Roberts West
Charles Robert Roberts West

Charles Robert Roberts West was born on 8 May 1849 in France. His parents were Philip Joseph Roberts West of the 17th Lancers and Ann Stockley. Philip died in St Germain-sur-Loire in 1860, whereupon Ann returned to England.

Charles qualified as a solicitor and made his home at Stafford House, Park Road, Cheam, where he remained for the rest of his life. His wife, whom he married in 1873, was cotton manufacturer's daughter Florence Dalton Brooke and they had four children, who were Charles, Philip, Maud and Archer. Long-time residents of Cheam called Charles 'The Squire'. He became a Poor Law Guardian and, in 1888, Chairman of the Board of Guardians. He died on 23 September 1934, followed by Florence on 4 June 1937.

Charles Raymond Roberts West (1874-1951) was a Lieutenant Colonel in the Essex Regiment; Philip Douglas Roberts West (1876-1937) and Archer Roberts West (1886-1941) were Navy officers. Philip was a teenaged midshipman on HMS Victoria, which sank in the Mediterranean in 1893 after a farcical collision with HMS Camperdown - which killed the flag officer, Admiral George Tryon, who was posthumously blamed for the disaster - and had the distinction of possibly saving the life of Earl Jellicoe, then a mere Commander.

Charles Raymond's son, Lieutenant Commander John Raymond Roberts West, died on HMS Barham in 1941 when it was torpedoed at short range by a U-boat in the Mediterranean. 862 crewmen were lost.

HMS Victoria sinking in 1893
HMS Victoria sinking in 1893.
Image source: Wikimedia Commons


HMS Barham exploding in 1941
HMS Barham exploding in 1941.
Image source: Wikimedia Commons

Maud West authored some local books on Cheam. She never married and died in 1931.


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ARTHUR HENRY TRITTON (1855-1936)
Chairman 1925-32


Arthur Henry Tritton
Arthur Henry Tritton

Arthur Henry Tritton was born on 28 May 1855 at Otford, Kent, where his father, Robert Biscoe Tritton (1819-98), was Perpetual Curate; his mother was Charlotte Lindsay.

Rev. Robert Biscoe Tritton.
Rev. Robert Biscoe Tritton.
Image source: http://www.wilfrid.com/people/robert_tritton.htm and used by permission.

Arthur became a stockbroker and in 1878 he married the widowed Louisa Woolf (nee Davis, born in Glasgow in about 1849), who had four young daughters (Sybil, Beatrice, Bloom David and Mary Snowdrop) and who was said to have 'golden hair out of a bottle'. Louisa's first husband was London solicitor, David Woolf, an uncle of Virginia Woolf's husband, Leonard. The Jewish Woolf family was alleged to be outraged that Louisa should marry Arthur Tritton, a Gentile.

Arthur, Louisa and her children moved into The Priory, Leatherhead, and had three children of their own, being Winifred Louie (1879-1949, married Arthur Gerard Miller of Leatherhead, 1882-1969), Arthur Robert( 1884-1957, married the widowed Lady René Baron, daughter of Bruno Richter of New York) and Nigel Charles (1891-1971, married Ruth Borradaile Coles). As well as being a magistrate, Arthur was a Chairman of Leatherhead Urban District Council and a churchwarden; he was also a keen sportsman, numbering cricket and polo among his interests.

Louisa died on 10 July 1917 and in the following year Arthur married Mabel Holloway at Thames Ditton, by which time he was living at Crocknorth, East Horsley, Surrey. Mabel died on 10 January 1927 and Arthur on 3 April 1936.

Winifred Louie and Arthur Gerard Miller moved to Woodmancote, Sussex. Their son, Lieutenant Arthur Thomas Miller of the King's Royal Rifle Corps, was killed in action in Tunisia on 17 March 1943, aged 22.


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JOHN THOMAS TUDOR REES (His Honour Judge Tudor Rees) (1880-1956)
Chairman 1933-55


John Thomas Tudor Rees
John Thomas Tudor Rees

Tudor Rees was born in Maesteg, Glamorgan on 18 July 1880, son of Isaac Rees, building contractor and grocer, and his wife, Elizabeth; he was educated at the University of Wales. Initially he practised as a solicitor in Cardiff but then decided to change to the Bar, being called at Gray's Inn in 1922.

In the First World War he served in the Royal Welch Regiment and the Machine Gun Corps, rising to the rank of Captain. Immediately afterwards he became the Liberal MP for Barnstaple in Devon. He lost the seat in the 1922 General Election, regained it in 1923 and lost it again the following year, at which point he decided to call it quits and concentrate on his legal career.

In 1939 he became a County Court Judge, sitting at Whitechapel, Bow, Uxbridge and Brentford. He was also Deputy Chairman of the Road and Rail Traffic Appeal Tribunal and received the Freedom of Epsom and Ewell in 1954. He retired from the Bench in 1955 and died at his home in Tadworth, Surrey on 27 February 1956, aged 75. His wife was the former Dorothy Annie B Sidebotham from Bowden, Cheshire.


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DONALD G COOK
Chairman 1955-57


Donald G Cook
Donald G Cook

It has proved difficult to find any information on Donald G Cook, but he appears to have been Donald George Cook, born in Southwark on 14 February 1900, son of George Henry Cook (c.1869-1938) and Miriam Hartnell Bartlett (1871- 1967).

George Henry Cook was an engineer and became Chairman and Governing Director of James Walker & Co Ltd, engine packing and jointing specialists, which operated out of the Lion Works in Woking. He was also founder of the Baptist Chapel in Bookham and a magistrate.

Donald Cook married Jean Douglas in 1931 in Southwark.


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STANLEY CHARLES LONGHURST CBE (1892-1971)
Chairman 1957-8 and 1964-5


Stanley Charles Longhurst
Stanley Charles Longhurst

Stanley Charles Longhurst was born in Epsom on 18 December 1892, son of Harold Longhurst (1867- 1955) and his wife, Harriett Louisa Randall ( c. 1866 - 1956). Harold, in turn, was the son of Edwin Longhurst (1845- 1920) and Eliza Brown (c.1840 - 1914).

Edwin was a timber merchant and established the firm of E Longhurst & Sons, which expanded into undertaking. The '& Sons' were originally Harold, Charles and Leonard Longhurst, with Harold's sons, Harrison and Stanley, joining the business later. The whole Longhurst family and their businesses will be the subject of a separate article.

Stanley eventually became principal of the firm, which had extensive forestry interests, and became involved in benevolent associations relating to the timber trade. He was also the first member of that trade to be appointed to the Forestry Commission.

In 1918 Stanley married Gertrude Edith Goby (born in 1889); she was the daughter of Ernest Grimwood Goby who had several careers, one of which was that of racehorse trainer in Epsom. Gertrude died in 1954 and Stanley established a memorial garden to her in the centre of Ewell. In the following year he remarried.

Stanley received the Freedom of the Borough of Epsom and Ewell in 1967. He died at the end of 1971, aged 79.


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ALBERT WILLIAM NICHOLLS (1898-1987)
Chairman 1959-63


Albert William Nicholls
Albert William Nicholls

Albert William Nicholls was born on 20 June 1898. He went to Oxford and read Modern History, graduating with a B.Litt. degree in 1923. He became a member of the Old St Catherine's Association at the University after the First World War and became a Tutor of the Association; he was editor of its magazine from 1922-26. A notable academic achievement at this time was his contribution to Malet's monumental 'History of the University of Oxford, Vol.2'. He retained his connections with the Association for many decades, becoming Secretary in the 1920s, Chairman from 1958-60 and a Committee member until 1969; he was also a generous contributor to College and Association appeals.

Albert became a barrister, practising in London and on the South-Eastern circuit; he also co-authored a number of influential books and articles on legal subjects, two of which were standard text books on housing and town and country planning.

Chessington House, Spring Street
Chessington House, Spring Street

The Surrey Archaeological Survey of 1950 describes Chessington House as follows.
'Late in the 17th century this house was built, and perhaps was occupied by some substantial yeoman who had his farmyard adjoining and holdings in the common fields.

The house, which outside resembles the contemporary building at Woodcote End, Epsom, is of two storeys, with attic and cellar, and is built of 2 inch red bricks, ornamented with moulded cornice, plinth and string-course. It appears that there was a back-addition which has since been extended; and that alterations were made early in the 19th century, while about 1888 the house was enlarged east and west on both floors. The sashes have outside frames and some old sash-bars remain. The handsome wooden porch has three-quarter Doric columns and a broken entablature with pediment and arched doorway.

The staircase, which is uniform up to the top floor, is framed with a solid string, turned tapered balusters, breaks in the hand-rail and double newel on the first floor. The north-east lower room has a plaster cornice of egg and tongue pattern, and still has its stone or marble chimney-piece with flat arch and key-stone of Restoration type. The south-west room has a moulded plaster cornice; and a room in the back-addition has a marble chimney-piece of late 18th-century style. The bedrooms have moulded plaster cornices and stone or wooden chimney-pieces all of the period of the house.

In the middle of the 19th century the house was inhabited by Mrs. Cutler, one of a family of farmers and maltsters in Ewell. It is now the property of A. W. Nicholls, Esq.'
Albert inside Chessington House 1984
Albert inside Chessington House 1984
Image source Epsom and Ewell Advertiser 19 Jul 1984

In 1944-45 Albert was Mayor of Epsom and Ewell, but his real claim to fame locally was as a founder member of the Nonsuch Society in 1934, which was formed to try to save Nonsuch Park from development after the last of the Farmer family died (see the section on William Robert Gamul Farmer earlier in this article).

Albert in his Mayoral robes
Albert in his Mayoral robes
Image source Epsom and Ewell Advertiser 19 Jul 1984

Albert's expertise in planning law came in very useful and eventually the local council and the London County Council were persuaded to buy the Park. Not all of the Society's campaigns succeeded, but two very important successes were the defeat of plans to flatten Ewell High Street for re-development and to widen Church Street, Epsom, both of which would have entailed demolition of the historic buildings.

Amongst Albert's other roles were Chairman of the Epsom Conservative Party for many years after the Second World War, Chairman of the local cottage hospital, first Chairman of the Committee of Management of the Kingston Hospital District and Surrey County Councillor. He gradually relinquished these posts and retired, but he remained involved in the Nonsuch Society well into his 80s.

Albert never married and his sister lived with him in Chessington House. He died in 1987, aged 88. A source at Oxford University comments that his CV 'reflects a life dedicated to public service, and shows considerable devotion to his college. It benefited under his will.'

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JACK CYRIL GLASS CRUMP OBE (1905-1966)
Chairman 1966


Jack Cyril Glass Crump
Jack Cyril Glass Crump

Jack was born in Barnes on 4 June 1905, the son of printer Alfred Dingle Crump (1871-1952) and Georgina Mary Glass Perry (c.1879-1942). He was very well known as team manager of the British Amateur Athletics Board from 1936-56 and its Secretary from 1946-64; he was also a BBC television commentator at the 1948 Olympic Games in London. His 'other job' was as managing director of the Penton publishing company. There is a film clip showing Jack Crump on the British Pathé website at www.britishpathe.com. He is the balding gentleman with the briefcase.

Jack married Maud Violet Cooper (1904-81) in 1928; his brief tenure as Chairman of the Bench was cut short by his abrupt death from cancer in 1966, aged 60.


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IGNATIUS JOHN 'JACK' O'HEA OBE (1897-1984)
Chairman 1966-69


Ignatius John O'Hea
Ignatius John 'Jack' O'Hea

Ignatius John O'Hea, known as Jack, was born in Leicester on 18 May 1897 to Irish-born John O'Hea, a Collector of Inland Revenue, and his wife, Mary. He was educated at the independent Roman Catholic Stonyhurst College, near Blackburn, and belonged to the College Contingent of its Officer Training Corps during and after the First World War, rising to the rank of Captain.

Jack was an engineer and in the 1920s he set up a company called 'Colt' with his business partner, a Mr Colt. This firm was concerned with environmental engineering (such as ventilation and smoke control). A few years later the partnership was dissolved and Jack took sole charge: the company ultimately became Colt International, which is still in existence today, with headquarters at Havant, Hampshire. In 1978 the O'Hea family set up the Colt Foundation charity with a gift of shares: the Foundation, still very much active, seeks to finance and encourage medical research into occupational and environmental health.

In the mid-1950s Jack received an award from the Royal Humane Society for taking part in a Thames Rescue and in 1960 he was invested as a Knight of the Holy Sepulchre, which is an honour bestowed by the Roman Catholic Church.

Jack lived in Leatherhead and Shere for many years. He was married to Margaret Wigzell, by whom he had four children being Jerome O'Hea OBE, Alan, Mary and Patricia. Jack died in 1984 in Bournemouth district, aged 87.


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MRS HILDA ANDREWS OBE (1902-1987)
Chairwoman 1970-72


Mrs Hilda Andrews
Mrs Hilda Andrews

Hilda's comprehensive career is the subject of a separate article.

She was born Hilda Pilcher in Godalming on 10 August 1902, daughter of a dentist, William Henry Pilcher (c.1873-1959) and Winifred Susan Challis (c.1876-1965). In 1925 she married Lionel Frank Andrews (1899-1991) from Wiltshire, who became a general manager with Lloyd's Bank. They had one son. Hilda died on 18 February 1987, aged 84.


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SEYMOUR DOUGLAS PLUMMER DFC (1913-1978)
Chairman 1973-75


Seymour  Douglas Plummer
Seymour Douglas Plummer

Seymour Douglas Plummer was born on 14 March 1913 in Lee, London, the son of Douglas John Conolly Plummer, who was in the export business, and his wife, Edith Newman. Seymour was a lawyer and for at least part of his career was with Bell, Brodrick & Gray, Solicitors in London.

During the Second World War he was a Flying Officer in the RAF Volunteer Reserve and was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross in 1943; he remained on the reserve list after the war.

At one time Seymour lived at 90 Arundel Avenue, Ewell and then in Great Bookham, but after his retirement from the Bench he resided in Beaminster, Dorset, where he died in 1978.


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BASIL FREDERICK SEYMOUR (1918-94)
Chairman 1975-84


Basil Frederick Seymour
Basil Frederick Seymour

It is noticeable on going through the Chairmen of the Bench in chronological order how different were the backgrounds of most of the incumbents after the mid-20th Century. Basil was the son of a man who started out in a small plant nursery at The Parade, Epsom.

Frederick J Seymour set up his market gardening business in 1918 and it subsequently expanded into larger premises in Epsom. Basil joined his father in the 1930s, his especial interest being landscape design and construction. He was in the Army for the duration of the Second World War and, on his return, found the business in dire straits. Together with his wife, Pat (nee Cooke), whom he had married in 1944, and his brother, Denis, he set about the rescue.

In due course the Seymours added a garden centre in Ewell to their portfolio and during the 1960s and 1970s they won many medals at the Chelsea Flower Show, including two golds. Basil was also a President of Epsom Rotary Club and a founder member of the Society of Garden Designers. In 1982 the business of Seymours Landscapes moved to Stoke D'Abernon. Basil and Pat's son, James, a Fellow of the Society of Garden Designers, still operates from Seymours.

Basil died in 1994.


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Linda Jackson © January 2012



Interior of Epsom Magistrates Court
Interior of Epsom Magistrates Court. Date Not Known



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