Mayor 1903 – 1904.


Member of the Conservative Party.


Frederick was elected to the Council in 1885 as one of the representatives of the St. Clement Ward.


Born: 19th April 1846, St. Clement’s, Ipswich.

Baptised: 9th September 1846, St. Clement’s Church, Ipswich.


Father: John Bennett, born 15th March 1812, Ipswich. John was a builder and contractor and employer, with his business premises at New Street Works, Ipswich. John Bennett died from the results of an accident Saturday, 13th June 1857, at the Crown Inn, Great Horkesley, Essex. Laid to rest 20th June 1857 at Ipswich Old Cemetery.



Melancholy and fatal accident. – On Saturday afternoon, a fatal accident occurred to Mr. John Bennett, a builder, of Church Street, St. Clement’s, Ipswich. Mr. Frederick Ransome and Mr. Bennett were on their way to Great Horkesley, near Colchester, on business, the former gentleman driving his own horse, and in turning a corner not far from the Crown Inn, Great Horkesley, the horse took fright, ran up the bank, and threw Mr. Ransome out, and that gentleman was dragged on the ground by the side of the animal a short distance with the reins in his hand. On being compelled to relinquish his hold, Mr. Bennett, to save himself, jumped out of the vehicle, and unfortunately alighted on his head. He was picked up in an unconscious state and taken to the Crown Inn. Medical assistance was speedily procured from Nayland, an adjoining parish, and as soon as the case was found to be dangerous, Mr. Ransome proceeded to Colchester for further medical aid. He then returned to Ipswich to communicate the sad intelligence to the family, and Mrs. Martha Bennett with her eldest son, John Bennett and mother, Mrs. Martha Barker, immediately proceeded to Great Horkesley in a cab, where they arrived about 10 o’clock at night, and twenty minutes after the unfortunate gentleman died. The deceased, who was much respected by his fellow townsmen, has, we regret to add, left a bereaved widow and six children to mourn his untimely end. An inquest was held yesterday, and a verdict of “Accidental Death” was recorded. We are happy to state that, with the exception of a few slight bruises, Mr. Frederick Ransome escaped unhurt. Suffolk Chronicle – Saturday, 20th June 1857

Inquest held on Monday, 15th June 1857, at the Crown Inn, Great Horkesley, Essex, before W. Codd, Esq., coroner. Mr. Frederick Ransome, a merchant, of Ipswich, stated – The deceased was a builder at Ipswich. On Saturday afternoon he was accompanying me from the Nayland Road towards Little Horkesley when the near wheel came in contact with a post just outside the bank; I was driving, and the concussion threw me out; the deceased remained in the gig. The horse proceeded on, and, finding himself at liberty, quickened his pace to a gallop. I got up as quickly as possible and ran after the gig; I saw the deceased look around at me. The horse had not then commenced galloping, and there was nothing apparently to cause him any great alarm. I saw the deceased get up, but did not see him jump or fall. As the horse turned another corner I noticed that the gig was empty, and I immediately afterwards saw Mr. Bennett lying in the road. On getting up to him I found him perfectly insensible; I raised him and loosened his neckcloth. A few minutes afterwards a woman came up and went for assistance, and I immediately sent for a surgeon and removed the deceased to the public house. He appeared to have received a severe blow over the left eye and at the back of the head, and blood was coming from one ear.

The Coroner asked Mr. Ransome how he could account for getting up on the corner, as there was such ample room?

Mr. Ransome said it was from no lack of room; but just before reaching the corner, a cart came up in the opposite direction, which caused the horse to turn rather suddenly. The horse was accustomed to the road. He was a thorough-bred high-couraged animal, but perfectly steady.

The Coroner remarked that it was always wise to take a good wide sweep in rounding a corner if only to avoid the possibility of collision.

Mr. Ransome had no doubt that the post was placed there for the protection of the bank, but at the same time he considered such things very dangerous to the public; and in this case, he was decidedly of the opinion that but for the post he should not have been thrown out, which was, secondarily, the cause of what afterwards happened to Mr. Bennett.

Mrs. Harriet Polley said – On Saturday afternoon, just before three o’clock, I was walking along the road near the Crown, when two gentlemen passed me in a gig; the horse was going a good fair pace, but not very fast. After it turned the corner I could see that there was only one gentleman in the gig, and the horse was going much faster. At the corner, I picked up a great coat and followed as fast as I could. When I got up Mr. Ransome was supporting the deceased by the side of the road; I immediately went for assistance, and Mr. Bennett was removed to the Crown.

Mr. William Daniell, the surgeon, of Nayland, said – On the afternoon of Saturday last I was sent for to attend the deceased and reached here about half-past three. I found the deceased in the bar supported in an armchair, quite insensible; I examined his head to detect any external fracture; there was profuse bleeding from one ear. And the pupils of the eyes were insensible to light. I considered him in a very dangerous state, and despatched a messenger for my father, and also Mr. Partridge, of Colchester; in the meantime I had him removed upstairs and undressed. I made a further examination but could detect no external facture. I considered him to be labouring under concussion of the brain, and there was every symptom of internal fracture of the base of the skull; both my father and Mr. Partridge came, and I remained with him up to the time of his death, but nothing could be done for him; he died shortly before 11 o’clock the same night.

The Jury returned a verdict of “Accidental Death.” The deceased was 45 years of age; and left a widow and six children. Ipswich Journal – Saturday, 20th June 1857


After the death of her husband, Martha Bennett submitted to the local newspapers that she would carry on her husband’s building business. She trusted that the support conferred upon her late husband may be continued to herself for the benefit of herself and her children.


Mother: Martha Fuller Bennett (nee Barker), born 5th February 1813, St. Clement’s, Ipswich – only daughter of Charles Barker, a grocer and Martha Barker (nee Harvey), of St. Clement’s Ipswich. Martha Bennett died 28th June 1873 after a short and painful affliction.



Martha Harvey Bennett, born 29th September 1836, St. Clement’s, Ipswich, baptised 29th March 1837, at St. Clement’s Church, Ipswich. On the 24th September 1862, at St. Clement’s Church, Ipswich, Martha married William Platt Crossley, born 27th October 1839, Bradford, Yorkshire, baptised 21st November 1852, at The Cathedral Church of St. Peter, Bradford. Martha and William had eight children and made their family home at 5, Foundation Street, whilst William was employed as a schoolmaster.

In 1858, William was appointed a schoolmaster at Christ’s Hospital Day School, an endowed school for boys’ and relocated to Ipswich from Bradford. He had served as the second schoolmaster for eight years when on the 19th December 1865, 36 year old headmaster Alfred May Topple died. In January 1866, William Crossley was appointed the headmaster of Christ’s Hospital Day School, a position he held for 19 years. William stepped down as headmaster in 1885, when on the 23rd April 1885, a large and handsome new building designed with lighting, warming, and ventilation in mind by architect Mr. Brightwen Binyon, opened as The Middle Class School for Boys, in Bolton Lane, near St. Margaret’s Church, formerly known as “Day’s Yard.” Mr. Thomas Edward Cattell, formerly headmaster of St. Mark’s College Upper School, Chelsea. It was hoped to utilise the building in Foundation Street as a Middle Class School for Girls. Ipswich Journal – Tuesday, 14th April 1885

In 1886, after 21 years in business as a tobacconist at 4, Tavern Street, Ipswich, Mr. Joseph Lemmen Brook relocated to Carlton House, Westgate Street, to set up his new tobacconist business. In February 1886, the Crossley family moved to 4, Tavern Street, Ipswich, where William became a tobacconist and opened the ‘Gyppeswick Brand Cigar and Brand Depot,’ offering the smokers of Ipswich a large assortment of Meerschaum and Briar Root Pipes, Manila cigars, Henry Clay, Por Larranaga, Partaga and also a great variety of tobacconist’s fancy goods.

William Crossley, a tobacconist died 8th May 1895, of acute pneumonia at his residence 4, Tavern Street, Ipswich. Laid to rest at Ipswich Old Cemetery, Section L with his infant son Alfred May Crossley (1877 – May 1877). After William’s death, Martha continued as a tobacconist and employer at 4, Tavern Street. Martha Crossley died 7th January 1927, at her residence 17, Philip Road, Ipswich. Laid to rest at Ipswich Old Cemetery, Section L with her infant son Alfred May Crossley (1877 – May 1877) and husband William.


John Barker Bennett, born 25th September 1840, St. Clement’s, Ipswich, baptised 21st October 1840, at St. Clement’s Church, Ipswich. On the 24th March 1870, at St. Clement’s Church, Ipswich, by the Reverend Richard Deare Pierpoint, John married Maria Stearn, born 1841, Ipswich – youngest daughter of Thomas Stearn, a master plumber and Elizabeth Stearn (nee Dallaston), of Church Street, St. Clement’s, Ipswich. In 1881, a stained glass window was inserted at the East end of the South aisle of St. Clement’s Church, in memory of Thomas and Elizabeth Stearn. The subject, the presentation of the infant Saviour in the Temple. Maria and John had one son and made their family home at 22, Church Street, Ipswich.

John was 17 years of age and an architect articled to Mr. Henry Woolnough, when his father was killed in 1857. The New Street Works was left without a master, so as the eldest son he found himself called upon to manage the affairs of his father’s building business for his widowed mother. After eleven years he was joined by his brother Frederick Bennett. The Bennett brothers continued in the building business under the title Messrs. J.B. and F. Bennett, builders, of New Street Works.

With business tact and conscientious execution of the work entrusted to them soon raised the business to the condition of one of the most flourishing in the town. Many of the public buildings of the town have been erected by the firm, including the Museum and Free Library, whilst they restored the Town Hall after the fall of a cantilever a few years back. They have also entirely built Waterside Works and Messrs. R.D. and J.B. Fraser’s splendid premises made extensive alterations at the Orwell Works and St. Peter’s Iron Works, and erected many of the residences at the north end of the town.” Ipswich Journal – Saturday, 6th December 1890

On account of his heart being seriously affected, John retired from the business with ill health in 1886, leaving the business entirely in the hands of his brother Frederick Bennett. From 1886 John served as a churchwarden at St. Clement’s Church, he died during his churchwardenship.

John Bennett died of pneumonia, an attack weakened by his heart condition on Monday, 1st December 1890, at his residence 22, Church Street, Ipswich. The funeral service was held Thursday, 4th December at St. Clement’s Church. Owing to the proximity of the residence of the deceased, the coffin was carried by six bearers (employees at the works) to the church, where the tower flag was half-mast high and the bells gave forth a muffled peal. After the service laid to rest at Ipswich Old Cemetery. Maria Bennett died 29th June 1898, at 22, Church Street, St. Clement’s, Ipswich.


Arthur Aly Bennett, born 11th August 1842, St. Clement’s, Ipswich. On the 14th June 1866, at St. Clement’s Church, Ipswich, by the Reverend George Frederick Head, Arthur married Emma Weetman, born 5th August 1842, Manchester, Lancashire, baptised 7th January 1844, at the Church of Manchester – family residing at Cheetham Hill – only surviving daughter of Matthew Weetman, a fustian manufacturer and Sarah Weetman (nee Archer), of Manchester. Emma and Arthur had seven children and made their family home first at 13, Great Whip Street and later at Clovelly, 22, Russell Road, Ipswich. Arthur was a director and secretary of Messrs. Ransome and Rapier, Ltd., at the Waterside Works, Ipswich. Arthur had not figured frequently on the public platform until in 1908, Arthur, a Conservative was elected to the Council as a representative of the Bridge Ward along with fellow Conservative Mr. Alfred Palmer Turner. The gentlemen were top of the poll with the largest majority, Arthur – 1243 and Alfred 1175. One of Arthur’s ideas to bring before the Council was the widening of Stoke Bridge with two footpaths on either side of the vehicular bridge. He had crossed the bridge daily for 40 years and now felt strongly that the increase of motors and cycles, at certain periods of the day was so great that the use of the bridge by pedestrians had become very dangerous and a wonder there had not been some serious accidents. Arthur sat on the Ipswich Dock Commission and attended their fortnightly meetings at the Town Hall. He was a Brother at the “Perfect Friendship” Lodge of Freemasons, No. 376, and the “Prince of Wales” Lodge No. 959, and worked hard to support Masonic charities in Ipswich.

Emma Bennett died 17th November 1908, Clovelly, 22, Russell Road, Ipswich. Arthur Bennett died 7th September 1916, at his residence Clovelly, 22, Russell Road, Ipswich.


Harriet Rebecca Bennett, born 1844, Ipswich, baptised 9th September 1846, St. Clement’s Church, Ipswich. On the 7th September 1865, at St. Helen’s Church, Ipswich, by the Reverend Joshua Brownjohn, Harriet married Frederick Richard Harrison, born 7th October 1841, St. Margaret’s, Ipswich, baptised 24th October 1841, at St. Margaret’s  Church, Ipswich. Harriet and Frederick had four children – one son survived to adulthood. Frederick Harrison was a poor rate and rent collector for the parishes of St. Matthew, St. Peter, and St. Nicholas. He kept and completed the Rate Books and other books and accounts relating to each parish. At the end of September 1874, Frederick’s books and accounts had been clearly and properly kept, balanced and audited. Then during the last few months of 1874 Frederick Harrison disappeared! In January 1875, the weekly meeting of the Ipswich Board of Guardians was held at the Town Hall, Mr. Thomas D’Eye Burroughes occupied the chair. Frederick’s disappearance was discussed and a letter was written and sent to Frederick to inform him of the Guardians’ dissatisfaction with his neglect of duty. Frederick did not receive the letter; Frederick, therefore, did not acknowledge the letter. Frederick had skipped town. He wrote one letter to Harriet posted at Sudbury, which stated he was going to London and thence to Newcastle. The removal of all the books and papers belonging to the parish that had been in the custody of Frederick was removed from his private residence and the home of his wife Harriet Harrison. At the end of January 1875, the Ipswich Board of Guardians met again to discuss Frederick’s disappearance. Mr. John Patterson Cobbold, M.P., moved that Frederick Harrison should be suspended. Mr. Arthur James Turner seconded the motion, which was carried. Mr. Joseph Pearce was appointed to collect the rates, he also went through Frederick’s accounts and found nothing had been falsified. In August 1876, Frederick Richard Harrison was declared bankrupt.

Harriet Harrison died 13th August 1907, at her son, Percy Herbert Harrison’s residence, of ‘Chelsea’ 2, Murray Road, St. Bartholomew’s, Ipswich. Laid to rest Friday, 16th August 1907, at Ipswich Old Cemetery.


George Charles Bennett, born 2nd December 1849, St. Clement’s, Ipswich, baptised 1st August 1852, at St. Helen’s Church, Ipswich. On the 14th May 1873, at St. Helen’s Church, Ipswich, by the Reverend W. Horne, rector, George, of Tavern Street, married Marianne Bennett, born 1850, Ipswich – only daughter of Henry Bennett, a coach and harness manufacturer and Emma Bennett (nee Parker), of 131, Fore Street, St. Clement’s, Ipswich. Marianne and George had six children and made their family home at Ivy Tower, 12, Fonnereau Road, Ipswich. George was a furnishing ironmonger. In 1872, 22 year old George, of 130, Woodbridge Road, Ipswich was an ironmonger’s assistant for Charles John Meadows, of “Meadows and Son” 26, Tavern Street, Ipswich. After a gradual extension of the business Charles Meadows was compelled to call George Bennett, into partnership under the title “Meadows and Bennett – Eastern Counties Furnishing and General Ironmongery Depot.” Charles and George advertised that they offered the best, the cheapest and the largest assortment of furnishing ironmongery – including kitchen ranges, cooking stoves of special manufacture and improvements, Bradford’s washing machinery, English and Foreign marble chimneypieces and sewing machines for sale or hire. Also, fenders, baths, iron bedsteads, garden seats, lawnmowers and implements for the garden and greenhouse. They offered useful and ornamental furnishing ironmongery for the drawing room, the dining room and the kitchen including tea and coffee services, egg stands, cruets, cake baskets, waiters, biscuit boxes, butter coolers, tankards, pickle frames, toast racks, knitting cases, jewel cases, nutcrackers, boxes for dresses, bonnets, or boots and shoes, electroplated spoons, dessert knives, forks and ladles and carvers in stag and ivory handles. They also sold Block Ice – 4s. per 100lbs. In 1879, Charles and George began completely extending and remodelling their business premises at 24 and 26, Tavern Street. By October 1879 the work had ended, and they began to re-arrange their vast stock under the principle that order is the first law, useful articles were not stored, but displayed in perfect order. The “Meadows and Bennett” premises now had an extensive suite of showrooms. They had reportedly improved and brightened up the street, and the windows of this great furnishing bazaar became one of the most attractive sights of the town, with an ornamental grille drawn up a few feet to protect the glass, except on Sundays, when a blind is drawn inside the glass, the bright and attractive display is as visible from the street as on the middle of the market day. – The Ipswich Journal – Saturday, 1st November 1879. On the 15th June 1887, Charles Meadows retired – the business partnership between Charles and George as furnishing ironmongers was dissolved by mutual consent. The business passed into the sole proprietorship of George Bennett, who continued to uphold and maintain the high reputation of the “Meadows and Bennett – Great Eastern Furnishing Ironmongery Stores,” Ipswich.

Marianne Bennett died 9th May 1921, Ipswich. George Bennett died 11th July 1931, at his residence 2, Henley Road, Ipswich.


Henry Theodore Bennett, born 1855, St. Clement’s, Ipswich – died 8th August 1855, St. Clement’s, Ipswich.




1851   Church Street, St. Clement’s, Ipswich.


Frederick was 4 years old and living with his parents & siblings.

John, 39, a Builder and Bricklayer – employing 18 men.

Martha, 37.

Martha, 14.

John, 10.

Arthur, 8.

Harriet, 6.

George, 1.

1 house servant.


1861   22, Church Street, St. Clement’s, Ipswich.


Frederick was 14 years old, a Carpenter. He was living with his widowed mother & siblings.

Martha, 48, owner of Builder & Brickmaker business – employing 27 men & 4 boys.

Martha, 24, a Governess.

John, 20, Manager of the Builder & Brickmaker business.

Arthur, 18, a Commercial Clerk.

Harriet, 17.

1 visitor – William Platt Crossley, 21, a Schoolmaster, born Bradford, Yorkshire.

1 house servant.


1871   24, Church Street, St. Clement’s, Ipswich.


Frederick was 24 years old, a Builder & Brick Manufacturer. He was married and head of the household.

Eliza, 24.

Frederick, 3 months.

sister-in-law – Sarah Maria Catchpole, 16.

1 servant.


Frederick’s brother 30 year old John, a Builder employing 85 men & 7 boys was living next door at number 22, Church Street.


1881   28, Fore Street, Ipswich.


Frederick was 34 years old, a Builder – employer. He was married and head of the household.

Eliza, 35.

Frederick, 10.

Raymond, 6.

Marguerite, 4.

William, 3.

Cecil, 1.

2 general servants.


1891   20, Church Street, Ipswich.


Frederick was 44 years old, a Builder & Constructor – employer – Plumber, Painter, Stone Mason, and Sculptor. He was married and head of the household.

Eliza, 45.

Frederick, 20, an Assistant to his father.

Ray, 16, an Apprentice Carpenter.

Marguerite, 14.

William, 13.

Cecil, 11.

Christine, 9.

Stanhope, 1.

2 general domestic servants.


1901   20, Church Street, Ipswich.


Frederick was 54 years old, a Building Contractor – employer. He was married and head of the household.

Eliza, 55.

Christine, 19.

1 visitor.

1 cook.

1 housemaid.


1911   ‘St. Germains’ Undercliff Road, Felixstowe, Suffolk.


Frederick was 64 years old, a Builder – employer. He was married and head of the household.

Eliza, 65.

1 general domestic servant.

On the 21st October 1869, at St. Mary Key Church, Ipswich, by the Reverend J. Dunningham, Frederick married Eliza Catchpole, born 1846, St. Clement’s, Ipswich, baptised 29th March 1846, Ipswich – second daughter of William and Hannah Catchpole, of Ipswich.


Father: William Catchpole, born 5th September 1818, Little Bealings, Suffolk, baptised 5th September 1818, Little Bealings. William first started his working life as a builder, then became a rate collector, and afterwards joined his brother Nathaniel Catchpole in the brewery, which was at that time only a small business. William was an earnest Liberal in politics, although less prominent on the platform, he rendered hearty service as a member of the Committee of the Ipswich Reform Club. William Catchpole, a brewer and acting partner in the firm of Messrs. Catchpole and Co., of the Unicorn Brewery, died from poisoning of the kidneys at 5:20 p.m., Friday, 4th September 1885, at his residence 34, Foundation Street, Ipswich. Evening Star – Saturday, 5th September 1885


Mother: Hannah Catchpole (nee Lord), born 1815, St. Clement’s, Ipswich, baptised 19th November 1915, Ipswich. Hannah Catchpole died 6th January 1892, Ipswich.


Eliza and Frederick had nine children:

Frederick William Bennett, born 1871, Ipswich, baptised 4th May 1871, Ipswich. On the 14th November 1894, at St. Jude’s Church, Kensington, London, 29 year old Frederick, a builder and contractor, of 20, Church Street, Ipswich, married 23 year old Florence Mary Squirrell, of Knaresborough House, Collingham Place, London, born 1869, Chelmsford, Essex – daughter of John Corder Squirrell, a wine merchant and Annie Adelaide Squirrell (nee Tugwood), of Bildeston, Suffolk. Florence and Frederick had one son and made their family home at 129, Fore Street, Ipswich. Since leaving school, Frederick had been associated with his father’s extensive building business of New Street Works. Frederick was a highly respected member of the Loyal Suffolk Hussars. Frederick died 8 p.m., Saturday, 5th October 1895, after a fortnight’s illness from typhoid fever, at Ipswich. It was reported that the disease was contracted by drinking water (for its extra coolness during the hot weather in September) from a well in Bramford Road, where the Bennett firm was carrying out additional buildings for the Ipswich School Board. Out of respect to Frederick’s memory as a boating man, a social evening in connection with the Naiad and Petrel rowing clubs was immediately brought to a close upon his death becoming known. The funeral service was held, Wednesday, 9th October 1895. Laid to rest at Ipswich Old Cemetery, Section H.

In 1903, Suffolk, Frederick’s widow, Florence Bennett married Philip Percy Cornell, born 13th February 1874, Ipswich. They made their family home at 156, Norwich Road, Ipswich. Philip was an oil and colour merchant – employer. Philip died 9th April 1920, 156, Norwich Road. Florence Cornell died 12th December 1950, at Chatsworth Nursing Home, Felixstowe, Suffolk, of Beecholme Hotel, Sea Road, Felixstowe.


Harry John Bennett, born 1872, Ipswich – died 1872, Ipswich. Laid to rest at Ipswich Old Cemetery, Section H.


Raymond George Bennett, born 11th May 1874, Ipswich, baptised 4th June 1874, Ipswich. On Wednesday, 3rd August 1898, at All Saints’ Church, Ipswich, Raymond married Elizabeth (Bessie) Field, born 5th January 1875, Norwich, Norfolk – second daughter of Arthur Field, an architect and surveyor – own account and Margaret Field (nee Welburn), of 85, London Road, Ipswich. Elizabeth and Raymond had one daughter and made their family home at 46, Corder Road, Ipswich. Raymond was a master builder and contractor with his father’s extensive New Street Works building business. Raymond Bennet died 16th October 1953, at Foxhall Road, Ipswich, of 46, Corder Road, Ipswich. Elizabeth Bennett died 28th June 1957, at Broad Oke, Burlington Road, Ipswich, of 46, Corder Road, Ipswich.


Marguerite Emily Bennett, born 2nd September 1876, Ipswich. Marguerite distinguished herself in her studies in connection with the Royal College of Music. On Wednesday, 18th April 1896, at St. Mary Abbots Church, Kensington, Marguerite married (Leonard) Ernest Pretty, of Goldrood, Ipswich, born 1870, Ipswich, a corset manufacturer – employer. The wedding breakfast was held at Bailey’s Hotel, Gloucester Road. The flowers and bouquets were all supplied by Harrod’s Stores, Brompton Road, and wedding carriages from Harrold’s livery stables. Marguerite and Ernest had 2 daughters, and made their first family home at Gresham Lodge, Westerfield Road, St. Margaret’s, Ipswich, before moving to Constitution Hill, Ipswich. Marguerite continued to sing at choral society events, lectures, and music concerts, she also volunteered and gave her support at charity events in Ipswich. Ernest was a member of the Essex and Suffolk Hunt, in May 1908 he declared at their annual meeting “Foxhunters are certainly the finest race on earth.” Ernest Pretty died 1935, Surrey. In 1939, Marguerite was a widow and living at the home of her daughter Barbara Ernestine Gale and her husband Dr. Arthur Harold Gale, a medical officer, and their two children at their family home – Grants Paddock, Limpsfield, Surrey. Marguerite Pretty died 1959, Bristol.


William Owen Bennett, born 1878, Ipswich. On the 28th August 1907, at All Saints Church, Dovercourt, Essex, 29 year old William married 23 year old Mabel Esther Barber, born 1884, Aldeburgh, Suffolk – daughter of John Samuel Barber, a Trinity Pilot and Esther Alice Barber (nee Reeder), of Sea Road, Aldeburgh. Mabel and William had one son. William was the clerk of works to Sir William Eley Cuthbert Quilter Bart. M.P., J.P., at the Bawdsey Manor estate office. William Bennett died 20th March 1921, at his residence Red House Lane, Bawdsey, Suffolk. Laid to rest at Ipswich Old Cemetery, Section H, in the grave of his brother Harry John Bennett and his sister Beatrice Amy Bennett.


Cecil Arthur Bennett, born 1880, Ipswich. On the 10th July 1905, at St. Paul’s Church, Durban, by the Reverend C. Robinson, Cecil, of the Locomotive Department, Natal Government Railways married Alice Neale, born 1881, Highweek, Devon – youngest daughter of James Moore Neale, a gardener at Bardley House and Lucy Neale (nee Warren), of Bradley Lodge, Highweek, Devon. James Neale had sailed on the passenger steamship S.S. ‘Armadale Castle’ to join his daughter and landed just an hour or two before the start of the wedding ceremony. Alice was given away by Sir David Hunter, of Colinton House, the first General Manager of the Natal Government Railways.

Alice was successful in her own talents. As a young lady, she was a pupil of Dr. Weeks, at the West of England School of Music, Stoke. In 1901 she passed with honours the higher pianoforte examination of Trinity College, London, and was made an associate of the institution. In 1902, she succeeded in passing the Metropolitan Examination as a Performer of the pianoforte and became a Licentiate of the Royal Academy of Music. Alice was also an accomplished on the violin, after her marriage to Cecil it was felt that she was likely to be an accession to the musical societies of Durban.

Alice and Cecil had four children. In September 1913, Cecil, a clerk of a builder’s works and Alice, with their daughters Phyllis Joan and Valerie Vida embarked on the S.S. ‘Corinthian’ at the Port of London. They arrived at the Port of Quebec on the 5th October 1913. They made their family home in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. Cecil Bennet died March 1960, of 126, Gerard Street, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.


Christine Maria Bennett, born 27th August 1881, Ipswich. On Thursday, 13th June 1901, at St. Mary Abbots Church, Kensington, by the Reverend Canon Grane, cousin of the bridegroom, Christine married Sir Charles Bird Locock Bart, of Speldhurst, Kent, and 22, Gloucester Square, London, born 22nd November 1878, Kensington. Sir Charles Locock was the third baronet of that line, and was the grandson of Sir Charles Locock, one of the physicians to Queen Victoria. Lady Christine and Sir Charles had three children and made their first family home at Oaklands, Braintree, Essex. In 1939, The Lucock family were residing at their family home – ‘Blythswood’ Old Woking Road, West Byfleet, Surrey. Sir Charles Locock died 18th September 1965, of  ‘Blythswood’ Old Woking Road, West Byfleet, Surrey. Laid to rest at Brookwood Cemetery, Surrey. Lady Christine Locock died 7th September 1970, of 91, Back Road East, St. Ives, Cornwall. Laid to rest at Brookwood Cemetery, Surrey.


Beatrice Amy Bennett, born 1884, Ipswich – Beatrice died 1887, Ipswich. Laid to rest at Ipswich Old Cemetery, Section H, in the grave of her brother Harry John Bennett.


Stanhope Archibald Bennett, born 1st September 1889, Ipswich On Wednesday, 24th September 1913, at St. Cyrian’s Church, Brockley, Stanhope, an architect, married Gwendoline Emily Mills Johnston, born 6th January 1889, Lee, Kent, baptised 10th February 1889, at St. Peter’s Church, Eltham – daughter of Wallace Guy Dunbar Johnston, a Lieutenant in the African Commissariat and Kate Johnston (nee Mills), and stepdaughter of William Aitkin Clark, an examiner in the Bankruptcy Department – Board of Trade, of 174, Adelaide Road, Brockley, Lewisham. Gwendoline and Stanhope had one son. In 1939, Stanhope was an Architectural Draughtsman, the Bennett family were residing at their family home – 23, Bonfield Road, Lewisham. Gwendoline Bennett died 29th October 1946, at the Joyce Green Hospital, Dartford, Kent, of 23, Bonfield Road, Lewisham, London. Cremated 2nd November 1946, Southwark, London. Stanhope Bennett died 5th October 1969, at 38, The Wharf Street, St. Ives, Cornwall.


On Monday, 9th November 1903, the annual meeting of the Ipswich Town Council was held in the Council Chamber of the Town Hall, Ipswich. Shortly after 12 o’clock, the sitting Mayor, William John Catchpole entered the Council Chamber, followed by the Mace Bearer, and the members of the Council. The Mayor was received with applause as he announced that the first duty of the Council that morning was to elect a Mayor for the ensuing year.

Alderman Edward Packard rose to nominate Mr. Frederick Bennett to fulfil the honourable office as Mayor of Ipswich and to occupy the post of Chief Magistrate of this borough. Edward felt quite sure that Frederick Bennett was a gentleman who will maintain the dignity and prestige of Mayor.

Mr. Phillips rose to second the nomination of Frederick Bennett, a fellow with 18 years of service behind him. Mr. Henry Dixon Phillips had enquired and found that Frederick Bennett had attended more than 1,000 meetings of committees during the past year alone.

The resolution was then put and was declared carried, amidst cries of “All.”



On the 14th November 1903, the Mayor and Mayoress of Ipswich, Frederick and Eliza Bennett attended the public opening of the thirtieth annual exhibition of the Ipswich Fine Art Club. Upon the walls of the gallery included works by notable artists from former days, recognisable charming portraits of local dignitaries and many amateur drawings and illustrations of lovely scenery and beautiful views of mountain, wood, and Highland loch. This exhibition also included examples of Edinburgh and Glasgow artists.

There was a large attendance during the afternoon as the President Mr. Frank Brown took the chair to introduce and welcome Sir Charles Dalrymple. Sir Charles Dalrymple received an enthusiastic reception as with great pleasure he declared the Ipswich Fine Art Club exhibition to be open.

Frederick Bennet, as Mayor then had great pleasure in proposing a hearty vote of thanks to Sir Charles Dalrymple for his kindness in coming to open the exhibition. He hoped the presence of Sir Charles and his appropriate speech, would be the means of bringing about a record year in the history of the Fine Art Club, helping the finances of the Club to look much more favourable than they had done of late. Mr. Edward Packard seconded the vote of thanks to Sir Charles Dalrymple. Afternoon tea was served in the Water Colour Room by the Misses Packard and other ladies. Evening Star – Monday, 16th November 1903


The Mayor of Ipswich, Frederick Bennett and his son Arthur Aly Bennett attended the annual dinner of the Orwell Corinthian Yacht Club held on Saturday, 14th November, at the Crown and Anchor Hotel, Ipswich, the Commodore Mr. Edward Packard presided.

During the speeches the Mayor, Frederick Bennett rose to tell those gathered that the Corporation had a matter to be dealt with, namely, the treatment of the sewage. Frederick continued that the Corporation had received a report from Professor Robinson, and they would do their best to carry out some plan for getting rid of any nuisance there might be in regard to the sewage. Evening Star – Monday, 16th November 1903



On Wednesday, 18th November 1903, the Mayor of Ipswich, Frederick Bennett attended the annual dinner of the Harwich Infantry Brigade Bearer Company of the Royal Army Medical Corps (Volunteers), at the Crown and Anchor Hotel, Ipswich, Surgeon Major Stanley Stenton Hoyland presided. During the dinner, an enjoyable programme of music was played by Mr. Arthur Edward Steed’s String Band. After a cordial toast by Lieutenant William Alexander Gibb to the Mayor, Frederick rose to a very hearty reception, responded and said he was delighted to be present at such a gathering. Evening Star – Thursday, 19th November 1903



On the 17th December 1903, the annual distribution of prizes to students of the Ipswich Science, Art, and Technical Schools took place at the Town Hall in the Council Chamber. An exhibition of works executed by the pupils during the year had been set up in the Town Hall Library for visitors to view. The Mayor of Ipswich, Frederick Bennett was not able to attend. In the absence of Frederick, the Chair was taken by Mr. Edward Packard, and the Mayoress, Eliza Bennett, who was accompanied by her son Raymond Bennett had kindly agreed to distribute the prizes. There was a good attendance for the event, including many students and their friends.

Edward Packard opened the proceedings with a speech at the end of which he gracefully asked the Mayoress to distribute the prizes. Mr. Frank Woolnough read the lists as the Mayoress distributed the prizes.

After the prizes had been distributed Mr. Stephen Abbott Notcutt proposed a vote of thanks to the Mayoress which was seconded by Mr. John Shewell Corder. Raymond Bennett rose to acknowledge the compliment to his mother in appropriate terms.

During the evening, Mr. William Henry Brown, headmaster of St. Clement’s School, Ipswich had the pleasant duty to perform a surprise to an expecting Frank Woolnough, who for many years had been the able secretary of the Science and Art Classes under the direct control of the Museum Committee. The discharge of his duties attached to such an office entailed an enormous amount of work and the teachers of the town felt that they ought to acknowledge in some way Frank Woolnough’s generous help. William Brown handed a present to the Mayoress, Eliza Bennett who with a smile to Frank Woolnough presented him with a silver and enamelled casket, which had been artistically designed by a Gold Medallist of South Kensington – Mr. Frederick Mason, of Taunton.

The evening closed with a vote of thanks to the Chairman, Edward Packard, proposed by Raymond Bennett and seconded by Miss Broome in a vivacious speech. E.A.D.T. – Friday, 18th December 1903


On Thursday, 17th December 1903, the Mayor of Ipswich, Frederick Bennett and his brother-in-law Deputy Mayor, William John Catchpole attended the first annual dinner of the Eastern Counties Automobile Club, held at the Great White Horse Hotel, Ipswich. After an enjoyable dinner served by the hotel proprietor, Mr. John Harrison, Mr. Francis Lawrence Bland, Chairman of the Club proceeded to submit the toast of “The Borough of Ipswich,” coupled with the name of the Mayor, Frederick Bennett. He esteemed it an honour that the Mayor of Ipswich should come amongst them as one of their guests. Frederick in responding, gave an amusing account of a motor ride which he had on one occasion with Mr. William Tertius Pretty, and went on to say of the great progress which Ipswich had made during the past twenty years, and suggested that in the next generation, motor cars would be much more used in the borough than at present. E.A.D.T. – Friday, 18th December 1903


Throughout the month of December, the Mayor of Ipswich, Frederick Bennett and four well-known townsmen Mr. John Henry Grimwade, Mr. Frederick Edward Rands, Mr. Arthur Joseph Ridley and Mr. Arthur Charles Churchman appealed once again for funds to supply a Christmas Dinner for the very poorest children in the town. The feast for the poor and destitute children on Christmas Day was the thirtieth of the series and had greatly extended in recent years. The response and contributions to the appeal justified the expenditure of a sum sufficient to feed 1,500 poor and destitute Ipswich children. The substantial Christmas fare was provided in the spacious Corn Exchange, and in the Public Hall and Saloon. The Mayor and Mayoress, Frederick and Eliza Bennett attended at both places, and the Mayor spoke seasonal greetings and good wishes to all the children and the large number of willing helpers. After the meal, which was cooked and served hot by Mr. Henry Broome, a baker and confectioner, of 49, Butter Market, Ipswich, the children each received a bag of nuts and oranges and a second gift of a costume cracker, containing two new halfpennies direct from the Mint – a gift from Mr. Edward Herbert Fison, whose kindness on this and many similar occasions was gratefully recognised by all interested and participating in the feast. Evening Star – Saturday, 26th December 1903


On Thursday, 7th January 1904, the Mayor, Frederick Bennett and Mr. George Francis Josselyn were appointed members of the Prison Visiting Committee. Evening Star – Thursday, 7th January 1904



On Saturday, 30th January 1904, by the kind invitation of Mr. Herbert Jervis White-Jervis, chairman of the Corporation Electric Supply and Tramway Committee, the members of the Ipswich Scientific Society were enabled to pay a visit to the Electrical Works on Constantine Road, Ipswich. Between sixty to seventy gentlemen applied for and obtained tickets of admission to be shown around the Electrical Works. The Mayor of Ipswich, Frederick Bennett and his son Raymond Bennett were also in attendance as guests of Herbert White-Jervis. Excellent arrangements had been made by Mr. Frank Ayton the Chief Electrical Engineer Manager and the honourable secretary of the Ipswich Scientific Society Mr. Frank Woolnough and the members of the staff to render the inspection both pleasant and instructive.

After the tour Mr. Herbert White-Jervis completed his kindness by entertaining all the visitors at afternoon tea, which was served in the meter-room. Evening Star – Monday, 1st February 1904



On Friday, 29th January 1904, Mr. Frederick Bennett as Mayor of Ipswich was elected President of the Stoke And District Cottagers’ Horticultural Society for the ensuing year, during their annual meeting held at the People’s Hall, Stoke, Ipswich. Evening Star – Monday, 1st February 1904



The Ipswich Y.M.C.A. Gymnasium once again entered the competition for 200-Guinea International Shield, given by the National Physical Recreation Society. The Ipswich team had had a bye in the first round and was drawn in the second round against Liverpool Gymnasium. On Saturday, 20th February 1904, the contest between Ipswich Y.M.C.A. Gymnasium and Liverpool Gymnasium took place at the Central Hall of the Higher Grade School, Ipswich. There was a large and deeply interested assembly of townspeople to watch the contest, including the Mayor, Frederick Bennett who occupied the Chair, and his daughter Mrs. Marguerite Pretty. The Mayor rose to give a brief opening speech – he hoped, naturally enough that the Y.M.C.A. would win, but he also pointed out that they had a tough job in hand. Liverpool Gymnasium had always been represented by a crack team; he has been told that they had won the Challenge Shield on no fewer than five occasions and had been runners-up three or four times. It would therefore be well understood, that the Y.M.C.A. had very powerful opponents to meet; but Frederick felt sure they would make a good fight, and, if they did win, so much the greater would be their credit. The arrangements for the competition were carried out under the superintendence of the two instructors – Mr. William Wilkinson Wareing, M.B.C.P.E., for Liverpool, and Mr. Ernest Palmer, M.G.T.I. and N.S.P.E., for Ipswich Y.M.C.A. Mr. Henry Abraham Asplet was the pianist for the Liverpool team and Miss C. Podd played the accompaniments for the Ipswich team. Each team comprised of eight members, with a reserved man. Mr. Warwick Mortimer Vardon, Instructor of Gymnastics, St. Bride’s Institute, London was the Judge for the three sections – horizontal bar, barbells and high jumping. During the interval, a special drill exhibition and display were performed by the young pupils of the School Gymnasium, directed by their instructor Ernest Palmer. The winners, after a hard-fought and excellent competition, were the Liverpool Gymnasium team by 15 points.

Mr. Frederick Edward Rands thanked his Worship the Mayor for presiding, it was well-known how deeply interested the Mayor, Frederick Bennett had been for a great number of years past, in all that appertained to gymnastic and athletic competitions.

Mr. W. Reavell seconded Mr. Rands kind words to the Mayor and continued to say that all members of the Y.M.C.A. knew they had a good friend in Frederick Bennett, as well as the members of his family. The motion was carried by acclamation.

Frederick, in reply, said that it was true that he had for many years past taken a deep interest in all sports and physical exercises that conduced to the good health of the rising generation. He had been a member of the old Ipswich Gymnasium some 44 years ago and could still recollect how much he enjoyed the recreation. He went on to congratulate the Liverpool Gymnasium team upon their grand display.

Later, members of both teams were entertained at supper in the rooms of the Y.M.C.A.; the Mayor, Frederick Bennett and Mr. Frederick Edward Rands, plus other friends of the institution being present, and a pleasant social hour was passed. Evening Star – Monday, 22nd February 1904


After the success of the Ipswich Middle School Old Boys’ Association reunion dinner last year, it was decided to make the reunion an annual affair. Accordingly, the second dinner was held on Saturday, 27th February 1904, at the Crown and Anchor Hotel, 10, Westgate Street, Ipswich, the headmaster of the school Mr. Thomas Edward Cattell, presided. and was supported at the head table by the Mayor of Ipswich, Frederick Bennett, who was accompanied to the event by his son Raymond Bennett, treasurer of the Old Boys’ Association. About 60 Old Boys attended the reunion and enjoyed the repast served by Mr. Charles Henry Quilter, proprietor of the Crown and Anchor Hotel. During the evening Frederick rose to tell those gathered that it had been his pleasure to attend and to support so worthy a gentleman and headmaster as Thomas Cattell, notwithstanding that he did not always hear favourable reports of Mr. Cattell from his boys when they came home from school! The toasts of the evening were interspersed with a musical programme of exceptional excellence, including three finely rendered quartettes from the ‘Angelus Quartette.’ Evening Star – Monday, 29th February 1904


On Friday, 15th April 1904, by his private carriage, Frederick Bennett, as Mayor of Ipswich attended the funeral of the Reverend Ythil Arthur Barrington, the late Vicar of St. Mary-le-Tower Church, whose sudden death had occurred on Sunday, 10th April 1904, on his way back, via hansom cab, to the ‘Alexandra Hotel’ Knightsbridge, London, where he was staying. The Reverend Barrington had served at St.Mary-le-Tower Church for nearly 14 years and had made his family home at ‘Sunnyside’ 20, Fonnereau Road, Ipswich. Evening Star – Saturday, 16th April 1904


As a rule, when the proceedings at the Town Hall are comprised of a toast and song, the Mayor of the borough presides as the good genius of the feast. However, on Thursday, 21st April 1904, Mr. Thomas Robert Pearl Parkington, President of the Eastern Counties Master Builders’ Association presided at a festive gathering in the Council Chamber at the Ipswich Town Hall. The evening’s entertainment was to honour the Mayor of Ipswich, Frederick Bennett who was known to those gathered for his prominent position in the local building world, and as the President of the Ipswich Master Builders’ Association. During the evening speeches and toasts paid high compliments to Frederick. Mr. T C Costigan, secretary to the National Federation of Builders, remarked that a town could do no better than have at its head a successful and honourable builder. Mr. William Grayston proposed “The Mayor,” and said that the builders of the town felt that they ought not to allow the Mayoralty of one of their number, Alderman Bennett, to pass without some special recognition. They were all well acquainted with their guest and worthy friend the Mayor. He personally had known him a good many years. He had been respected in the building trade from his earliest association with it. His courtesy, perseverance, industry and thoroughness had been recognised by all his prominent qualities, and the town had recognised his capacity for public work some years ago. Since he was elected as a member of the Ipswich Town Council, he had an unbroken record, and his fellow members of the Association were gratified to find that additional honour had been conferred upon him last year, and to see him in the proud position he now occupied as Mayor of the Bough. Mr. Grayston went on to say that, before concluding he had a very pleasant duty to perform, namely, to present to the Mayor an illuminated address, signed by his fellow members of the Master Builders’ Association. The address was in the following terms:

A.D. 1904

To Ald. Fred. Bennett. We the undersigned master builders of Ipswich and district beg to beg to offer you our sincere and hearty congratulations upon your being elected by your fellow townsmen to the office of Chief Magistrate and Mayor of Ipswich, your native town. We beg to tender you our best wishes for your future health and happiness and ask your acceptance of this address of the evidence of our unbounded esteem and respect.

The address was signed by Thomas Parkington, President of the Eastern Counties Master Builders’ Federation, the officers of the Ipswich and District Master Builders’ Association, and thirty-one master builders.

The toast was drunk with enthusiasm and musical honours.

The address had been beautifully executed – Mr. Fred Anstead Browne, from the office of Messrs. Eade and Johns, Architects, Ipswich, being the artist. The scheme was carried out on vellum in flat washes, the prominent colours used being green and gold, the ground work is an unconventional interlacing of the nasturtium, balanced by figures in panels on either side, rising with the growth of the plant used in decoration. The Ipswich Borough Coat of Arms, and the crest of the National Master Builders’ Federation, surmount the whole and are artistically worked in.



On Saturday, 14th May 1904, at exactly three minutes past four in the afternoon the Mayor of Ipswich, Frederick Bennett, started the 39 competitors that had entered the Orwell Works Walk on a course from Felixstowe to Ipswich. The weather was beautifully fine, but the sun was hot and the roads dusty. A crowd of something like 300 had assembled, and a large proportion of these people followed the walkers on bicycles, motor cars and traps. Mr. William George Fisk (a builder and employer) was out with his motor car to chauffeur the Mayor, Frederick Bennett to various points along the route. Accompanying the Mayor was Mr. Frederic John Craven, a clerk at the Orwell Works who that afternoon was acting as secretary for the walk. The finishing point was at the Derby Road Railway Hotel where a large gathering watched the proceedings with great interest. Mr. William Michael Burch and Mr. John Ffloyd Peecock were referees at the tape, and the Mayor, Frederick Bennett took the times, and Frederic Craven acted as a scorer. The dust caused a great inconvenience en route, but despite this discomfort, and the fact that a strong headwind was blowing, the winner Mr. F. C. Baker completed the 11 miles in 1 hour 42 ½ minutes. E.A.D.T. – Monday, 16th May 1904

On Friday evening, 19th May, a smoking concert was held at the Station Hotel, Derby Road, Ipswich. The prizes won in connection with the Orwell Works walk were presented by Mr. John Ffloyd Peecock, the Chairman.



On Friday, 20th May 1904, the Mayor and Mayoress, Frederick and Eliza Bennett attended the Ipswich Middle School’s 15th annual athletic sports event, held at the Portman Road Ground. The weather was all that could be desired, the heat of the sun being tempered by a delightful breeze, which was enjoyed by the competitors and a large number of parents and friends of the schoolboys. The Ipswich Public Band, conducted by Mr. William Robert Flack, supplied the music during the afternoon. The events were of a varied character and were well contested. After all the events of the afternoon, the Mayoress presented the useful collection of prizes. E.A.D.T. – Saturday, 21st May 1904


On Monday, 30th May 1904, at the Town Hall, the Mayor of Ipswich, Frederick Bennett presided over the annual meeting in connection with the Ipswich Regatta and Illuminated Water Carnival. Mr. Hugh Loveridge Tracy proposed that the Regatta should be held earlier than in the past. The tide would be suitable on Friday, 22nd July exactly three earlier than last year. Mr. James Ling Jolly seconded. The proposition was carried unanimously. In reply to the vote of thanks given to the Mayor at the end of the meeting, Frederick recalled one race in which he coxed a crew from the end of the Promenade to Harwich and back. On that occasion, he believed he was more tired even than the rowers were themselves. E.A.D.T. – Tuesday, 31st May 1904


On Saturday, 18th June 1904, the new Alexandra Park for Ipswich was opened by the Mayor of Ipswich, Frederick Bennett. The weather was fine, as the crowds began to assemble half an hour before the time fixed for the opening, outside each of the three park gates. The greatest number was outside the Grove Lane gate, which was the one to be officially opened by the Mayor. Excellent order was maintained near the gate by the police, under Colonel Hickman Rose Russell. At half-past three o’clock the Mayor and Corporation, headed by the Mace and Sword bearers, arrived, having walked in procession up Grove Lane from St. Helen’s. The party had journeyed from the Town Hall in a special tramcar. Mr. Robert Stocker Paul, chairman of the Estates Committee, addressed the Mayor on behalf of the Estates Committee and asked the Mayor to accept a silver key with which to open the gate for all the inhabitants of the borough. Frederick as Mayor replied that it was his pleasant duty to apply that key to the lock, and he could assure them that nothing could give him greater pleasure than to open a park. He told those gathered that they would have lovely views from the other side of Alexandra Park. He continued that Alexandra Park would not, of course, supersede Christchurch Park, but it really was a most charming place, and if the public would only take reasonable care of it, Alexandra Park would continue to be a source of pleasure for many years to come. The Mayor announced to those gathered that he had pleasure in declaring Alexandra Park open for the use of the inhabitants of Ipswich forever. He then unlocked the gate and led the way into the town’s new possession. Simultaneously with the opening of the gate a gun fired on the hill in the centre of the Park, and the other two gates were promptly unlocked and thrown open. Several thousand filed in as the band of the 1st Suffolk and Harwich R.G.A. under Bandmaster McNeil (for whom a bandstand had been improvised), struck up a lively air and continued playing throughout the afternoon, to the enjoyment of the people.

The Mayor and members of the Town Council proceeded to a marquee, which, by the kindness of Mr. John Dupuis Cobbold, had been erected on the land adjoining Alexandra Park, on the Back Hamlet side. They were joined by a large number of prominent families to whom the Mayor and Mayoress, Frederick and Eliza were “At Home.” E.A.D.T. – Monday, 20th June 1904




The annual Court for the Admission of Freemen was held at the Town Hall on Wednesday, 6th July 1904, before the Mayor of Ipswich, Frederick Bennett. Mr. William Sampson Coward of the Liberal Association brought before the Mayor five candidates, all of whom were duly enrolled. Evening Star – Thursday, 7th July 1904



On Saturday afternoon, 16th July 1904, at the Portman Road ground, Ipswich, the Mayor and Mayoress, Frederick and Eliza Bennett attended the first athletic meeting promoted exclusively for the working boys of Ipswich. The idea of holding such a gathering originated at the Working Boys’ Home in Church Street, and with the cooperation of several local gentlemen the idea was carried into effect. The officials in connection with the afternoon of sports included: Mr. Bunnell Henry Burton as President, with the Mayor, Frederick Bennett and Mr. Arthur George Beverley as Timekeepers, and the Reverend Norton John Raper (Curate of St. Mary’s Stoke Church) as Starter. The Band of the 1st V.B.S.R. played a selection of music during the afternoon.

The various events included throwing a cricket ball, a 120 yards flat, a 220 yards flat, a rope climbing contest, a three-legged race, a quarter-mile flat, a half-mile flat, a high jump, an obstacle race, a hurdle race, a one-mile flat, a 100 yards flat, and a consolation race. The prizes were distributed by the Mayoress, Eliza Bennett, to whom a vote of thanks was proposed by one of the judges Mr. Edwin Perkins Ridley. Mr. R. Hudson Pope called for three cheers for the Mayor and Mayoress. Frederick Bennett acknowledged the vote of thanks on behalf of the Mayoress and said that it had afforded the Mayoress and himself great pleasure in being present that afternoon.

The event had proved a source of enjoyment to boys of the town who hitherto had not had such a good opportunity of taking part in athletic sports. In the evening the successful competitors were entertained at supper at the Boys’ Hall, Waterworks Street, by Mr. R Hudson Pope, the warden of the Ipswich Working Boys’ Home. Evening Star – Monday, 18th July 1904



St. John’s Home, Ipswich, had been in existence a considerable number of years, during which time large numbers of boys and girls had been well cared for and trained away from the unattractive and often harmful influence of the Workhouse. For a long time, much difficulty had been experienced when receiving new boys and girls from other Unions in different parts of the country and beyond its borders, for fear that they unintentionally should introduce some infectious disease which, of course, would be a serious matter in the case of a Home where so many children are already located. The valuable addition of the new Probationary House is to afford accommodation for these new-comers, so that they can be kept in quarantine, for such a period as to leave no doubt that they are in such a condition of health that they may with safety be admitted to the larger House. The new Probationary House would provide accommodation for 19 children, besides a room for a nurse or ‘mother.’ The new isolated building with a frontage on Britannia Road was erected from the designs Mr. Henry J. Wright, M.S.A., Ipswich, the contractors being Messrs. Thomas Parkington and Sons, Ipswich. The gas piping had been laid by Messrs. Martin and Newby, Ipswich, and the provision for electric light and electric bells was entrusted to Messrs. Tamplin and Makovski, of Northgate Street, Ipswich.

The Probationary House, at St. John’s Home, Ipswich, was opened on Saturday, 23rd July 1904, in the afternoon, by the Mayor of Ipswich, Frederick Bennett, who was accompanied by the Mayoress, Eliza Bennett. There was a good assembly of Guardians and friends, including Mr. Alfred Sizer, the Chairman of the Ipswich Board of Guardians, the Superintendent of the Home Mr. Arthur Tom Shepherd and the Matron Mrs. Rogers.

The company assembled at St. John’s Home at three o’clock, whence from the Home to the Probationary House there was a procession, headed by the excellent brass band of the Home under the leadership of Mr. John Forest, a teacher of music and an Army pensioner, followed by the girls and boys of the Home, the hymn “Angel voices ever singing,” was sung to the music of the band.

Mr. Alfred Sizer, as Chairman, stepped forward to express the pleasure that they all experienced at seeing the Mayor and Mayoress amongst them that day. Mr. William Harry Calver, Chairman of the Committee then came forward and gave some interesting particulars about St. John’s Home to all those gathered, and he felt that the building might be regarded as one highly creditable to the town.

Then the architect, Mr. Henry J. Wright, amidst much applause presented the key to the Mayor for the purpose of opening the new building. It was a silver-gilt key, bearing on one side of the bow the inscription:

“Presented to F. Bennett, Esq., Mayor of Ipswich, July 25 1904”

On the reverse side being the old arms of Ipswich. The key was enclosed in a handsome case.

The Mayor, Frederick Bennett, on receiving the key, said he was much pleased at being the recipient of such a handsome key, and he should ever treasure it. He also felt very great pleasure in being present to take part in the interesting proceedings of that afternoon. It afforded him the greatest gratification to be able to comply with the request which had been made to him to open such a fine building. Frederick told those gathered that some two or three months ago he had had the pleasure of going over the fine building with the builder, and it struck him that everything had been well planned by the architect, and that the work was being done in a highly satisfactory manner. His Worship then opened the door and entered the building, accompanied by the Mayoress and Mrs. Catherine Sizer.

William Harry Calver, then moved a vote of thanks to the Mayor and Mayoress for coming that afternoon to take part in the opening of the building.

Mr. George Abbott seconded the motion, he went on to say that he trusted that the door of the new building would always be open for the amelioration of the conditions of the poor children of the town and neighbourhood. The children who were inmates of the Home would doubtless, ever remember that the Mayor and Mayoress of Ipswich attended to open the new building.

The Mayor and Mayoress and the invited company were then conducted over the building by Mr. Shepherd, the Superintendent, and Mrs. Mary Rogers, the Matron; and afterwards there was an assembly on the lawn, where the visitors partook of tea at the kind invitation of Alfred Sizer. Before the party dispersed, Mr. George Pretty moved a vote of thanks to Alfred Sizer for his kind hospitality. Frederick Bennett seconded the proposition. Evening Star – Monday, 25th July 1904


On Sunday 24th July 1904, the Mayor of Ipswich, Frederick Bennett, in his capacity as civic head of the Borough of Ipswich, attended Divine Service at St. Mary-le-Tower Church, attired in his robes and chain of office. The Mayor was preceded by the Mace and Sword Bearers, and accompanied in his progress from the Town Hall to the church by members of the Council and Mr. Will Bantoft – Town Clerk, and Mr. John William Rouse – Clerk to the Magistrates. As the Mayoral party entered the church “God Save the King” was played on the organ. The new Vicar, the Reverend Canon William Melville Pigot spoke of the privilege of welcoming the Mayor and members of the Corporation, before he preached an excellent sermon, basing his remarks on the words which occur in the 11th verse, 29th chapter of Chronicles I. E.A.D.T. – Monday, 25th July 1904.



The Suffolk Police Athletic Sports event had become one of the leading athletic meetings in the county in just a few years. In 1902 the first meeting was held at Holy Wells Park, Ipswich, and last year in 1903 at Hardwick Park, Bury St. Edmunds and all brought together a large number of visitors from all parts of Suffolk. The events were welcomed in more ways than one, as on these occasions the police appear in altogether a different role, and to many it’s a pleasure to compete against the custodians of the peace and with public support the police charities are benefitted. On Wednesday, 7th September 1904, the third annual Suffolk Police Athletic Sports event took place at the Portman Road ground in Ipswich, wisely chosen as this enclosure was one of the most favoured places in East Anglia for athletic gatherings. The afternoon programme comprised of 32 events; the tug-of-war events having been contested in the morning.

The Mayor of Ipswich Frederick Bennett gave his support to the athletic sports event by volunteering as a Timekeeper alongside Captain Shadwell John Murray, of the Connaught Rangers. Evening Star – Saturday, 3rd September 1904



On Thursday, 29th September 1904, the Mayor of Ipswich, Frederick Bennett was amongst those present at the opening ceremony of an out-patients department of the East Suffolk and Ipswich Hospital. The spacious building to the right of the main entrance was erected by Dr. John Henry Bartlet in memory of the valuable work of his late father, Dr. Alexander Henry Bartlet who was a member of the honorary medical staff. The gathering of guests met at the main porch where Mr. Felix Cobbold, unlocked the door and invited those present to follow him inside. Dr. Hollis, as the senior medical officer present, proposed a vote of thanks to Dr. Bartlet for his generous gift, which was undoubtedly a great acquisition to the Hospital. Frederick Bennett, as Mayor seconded the vote of thanks and congratulated the builder upon his work, and said he hoped the poor of the neighbourhood would always be grateful to Dr. Bartlet for his valuable gift. Evening Star – Friday, 30th September 1904



On Tuesday, 4th October 1904, at the Town Hall, Frederick Bennett, as the Mayor of Ipswich, presided over a Freeman’s Court. The only applicant for admission was Mr. Alfred Smith (born 1859, Ipswich), the hotel proprietor of Greytown, Cape Colony, a son of the late Mr. Henry Baring Smith (died June 1864), a builder, of St. Clement’s, Ipswich. The applicant was identified by Mr. Alfred J. Smith, his cousin, who is the President of the Ipswich Freemen’s Association. Evening Star – Tuesday, 4th October 1904


The management of the Hippodrome organised a special matinee performance on Wednesday, 5th October 1904, for the benefit of the East Suffolk and Ipswich Hospital. The special feature was held under the patronage of the Mayor of Ipswich, Frederick Bennett. Those that did attend were treated to a most enjoyable and diversified entertainment. Evening Star – Thursday, 6th October 1904



On Tuesday, 11th October 1904, the Mayoress of Ipswich, Eliza Bennett opened the Harvest Fete and Bazaar at the Public Hall. The object of the two-day bazaar was to reduce the debt of £800 on the St. Clement’s Parochial Buildings. The Committee had transformed the Public Hall into a veritable fairyland, and a band of about 50 gaily dressed children carrying flowers imparted life to the scene.

The was a large attendance of the public at the opening ceremony, at which the Earl of Stradbroke presided. The Mayoress was accompanied by Mayor Frederick Bennett and their children Raymond Bennett (the Hon. Secretary), Lady Christine Locock, Mrs. Marguerite Pretty, and Frederick’s brother Arthur Bennett.

After the opening speech by the Earl of Stradbroke, the Mayoress was received with great applause and said that she had great pleasure in declaring the bazaar open, and she hoped it would be a great success. Mr. Herbert Jervis White-Jervis proposed a vote of thanks to the Mayoress, Eliza Bennett for opening the bazaar and the Reverend John Powell seconded the vote of thanks on behalf of the Committee. The Mayor, Frederick Bennett responded on behalf of the Mayoress and said that anything Mrs. Bennett could do to help to help any cause for the good of the community at large afforded her the greatest pleasure. He, therefore, hoped to see the stalls speedily emptied of their good things! Little Miss Nora Fryer, a tiny mite, prettily dressed presented a handsome bouquet to the Mayoress. Special praise was also given to Mr. Raymond Bennett for the way he had organised the bazaar as Hon. Secretary to the Committee.

The band of the 2nd Battalion Norfolk Regiment provided an abundance of excellent music conducted by Mr. Edward Elford, and concerts, recitals, dialogue and a conjuring act were given in the saloon in the afternoon and evening by several talented ladies and gentlemen. Evening Star – Wednesday, 12th October 1904.



The Autumn Assizes for the County of Suffolk were opened at the County Hall, Ipswich, on Tuesday, 1st November 1904, before Mr. Justice John Charles Bigham. At 10:30, that morning His Lordship, accompanied by the High Sheriff Colonel Alfred George Lucas and the Chaplin the , attended Divine Service at St. Mary-le-Tower Church. Frederick Bennett as Mayor of Ipswich, with members of the Town Council preceded by the Mace Bearers, marched in procession to the church. The Divine Service was conducted by the Vicar the Reverend Canon Pigott. There was no sermon. Evening Star – Tuesday, 1st November 1904



On Monday, 7th November 1904, Frederick Bennett as his last official act as Mayor of Ipswich presided over the annual meeting of the Ipswich Centre of the St. John Ambulance Association, at the Ambulance Hall, Samuel Road, Ipswich. Frederick was accompanied by the Mayoress, Eliza Bennett. The annual report stated that Ipswich was the oldest Centre in the Eastern Counties, having been formed in 1880, and it was also the best equipped. The Centre had had five classes during the year; altogether 86 persons attended a full course of instruction and gained 63 certificates. There had been 191 “calls” for the carriage during the year. The meeting was told that a second ambulance carriage had become an absolute necessity, but up to the present, only £20 had been received, which was half its cost. The Mayoress then rose to give the first guinea.

At the end of the report, Frederick presented the certificates and medallions awarded in respect of the year’s courses of instruction. Lieut.-Colonel Elliston proposed a vote of thanks to the Mayor and Doctor Samuel Oliver Eades seconded. In reply, Frederick said he would have much pleasure in giving a guinea towards the carriage fund. E.A.D.T. – Tuesday, 8th November 1904



Mayor images courtesy of Mr. A. Gilbert – Ipswich Borough Council.

Image of Sir David Hunter courtesy of Omar –   for census returns, births, marriages, deaths, probates, military records and other historical online records.

Members of the Council – in and since 1835 – Mr. B.P. Grimsey – July 1892.

error: Content is protected !!