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The Tathams of County Durham
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William Edmund Heathcote Tatham

Male 1897 - 1955  (58 years)



  • Name William Edmund Heathcote Tatham  [1, 2, 3
    • Seems did not use second name Edmund. Territorial Force Attestation form gives name as William Heathcote Tatham, signed by him on 06 Aug as W Heathcote Tatham and again on 02 Sep 1914 as W H Tatham.
    Known as "Bill" 
    Birth 02 Jan 1897  Sunnyside, Dundee, Natal Find all individuals with events at this location   [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6
    • Curtis & other family sources give birth date 02 Jan 1898. However:
      (1) Baptism register clearly reads 'Jany 2 1897' [see image];
      (2) Natal Witness, 08 Jan 1897: Births: Tatham, on Jan 2nd, 1897, at Sunnyside, Dundee, the wife of W H Tatham of a son;
      (3) E&W BMD reg index states age 58 at death 3Q1955, consistent with birth Jan 1897, but not Jan 1898.
    Baptism 31 Jan 1897  St James, Dundee, Natal Find all individuals with events at this location   [1
    William Edmund Heathcote Tatham (1897-1955)
    William Edmund Heathcote Tatham (1897-1955)
    Baptism register
    Education aft 1908  Michaelhouse, Balgowan, Natal Find all individuals with events at this location   [2, 3
    Education - 1914  King's School, Grantham Find all individuals with events at this location   [7
    Occupation Aug 1914  Erith Find all individuals with events at this location ; Engineering Pupil, Fraser & Chalmers  [7
    • The Fraser and Chalmers factory was one of the largest companies in Erith. It was started in the USA by two young men from Scotland, David Fraser (a millwright) and Tom Chalmers (a foundryman). In 1890 the company was approached to establish a factory in England to supply machinery for the South African goldfields and it opened the Erith works in May 1891. The British company expanded into steam plant, milling machinery and general engineering. In 1918 the factory was bought by the General Electric Company and by the 1950s covered 34 acres and employed about 4,000 workers. [www.ideal-homes.org.uk website accessed 24 Sep 2010, no longer online 03 Feb 2012]
    Military Service Aug 1914 - Oct 1914  Rifleman, 16th (City of London) Battn, Queen's Westminster Rifles  [3, 7
    • Height 5' 11" on enlistment
    Residence Aug 1914  The Laurels, Woolwich Rd, Belvedere Find all individuals with events at this location   [7
    • with step-mother (described as mother on army service record)
    Military Service Oct 1914 - Jun 1918  Royal Engineers  [3, 7
    • attached to Royal Naval Division
    • said to have been awarded Military Medal in 1917 [Curtis]. Not confirmed by War Office [communication 20 Jul 1931]
    Military Service Jun 1918 - Sep 1919  India Find all individuals with events at this location ; Captain, 1st King George's Own Sappers & Miners  [3
    Occupation Sep 1919 - Oct 1921  India Find all individuals with events at this location ; Indian Forest Service  [3
    Education 1921 - 1924  Keble College, Oxford Find all individuals with events at this location   [2, 3
    Occupation 1924 - 1925  Ripple, Deal Find all individuals with events at this location ; Master, Upton Preparatory School  [2, 3
    Occupation Dec 1925 -  Director, firm of Marine Lighting Engineers  [2, 3
    Residence Oct 1926  Calcutta Find all individuals with events at this location   [3
    Residence Apr 1927  Calcutta Find all individuals with events at this location   [8
    Marriage 02 Jun 1927  St Mark, North Audley St, Mayfair Find all individuals with events at this location   [3, 8, 9
    Mary Leigh Wood,   b. 26 May 1905, Paddington Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 12 Aug 1975, St Thomas' Hospital, Lambeth Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Occupation Mar 1951  Director  [6
    Residence Mar 1951  Pinehurst, South Ascot Find all individuals with events at this location   [6
    Residence Dec 1953  Pinehurst, South Ascot Find all individuals with events at this location   [10
    Decoration bef 1955  OBE, TD  [11
    Residence - 1955  Marylea, Heathside Rd, Woking Find all individuals with events at this location   [12
    Death 16 Aug 1955  Tramerton, Brooklyn Rd, Woking Find all individuals with events at this location   [5, 12, 13, 14
    • On Aug. 16, 1955, after a long illness, William Heathcote (Bill) Tatham, O.B.E., T.D., aged 58 years. dear husband of Mary, and father of Angela Clarke, Richard, Peter, David and George, of Marylea, Heathside Road, Woking. He was cremated privately last Friday. [The Times]
    Probate 14 Nov 1955  London Find all individuals with events at this location ; £22,020 0s. 3d.  [14
    • Tatham William Edmund Heathcote of Marylea Heathside-road Woking Surrey died 16 August August 1955 at Tramerton Brooklyn-road Woking Probate London 14 November to Roger Leigh-Wood banker [brother-in-law] and the reverend Kenneth James Leigh-Wood clerk. Effects £22020 0s. 3d. [NPC]
    Notes 
    • William-Edmund-Heathcote, b. 2 Jan., 1898, educ. at Michaelhouse, Natal, and Keble College, Oxford. In the Great War, 1914-1918, declared on the night of 4 August, he joined the Queen's Westminster Rifles, on 6 Aug, 1914. Owing to his being then only 17 years of age, the Q.W.R., a London Territorial Regiment, decided that he could not serve in France for at least a year; so in Oct., 1914, he transferred to the Royal Engineers, attached to the Royal Naval Division, with which Division he proceeded to Gallipoli, landing on 26 April, 1916, and, incidentally, meeting William Inglis Tatham, R.N., Midshipman on H.M.S. Euryalus, on the Landing Beach "W". Stricken with typhoid fever and dysentery, he was conveyed to Malta, whence, after being in Hospital during October and November, 1915, he returned to Gallipoli in time for the evacuation.
      He was one of the last ten men to leave Cape Hellas on the night of 9 Jan., 1916, the party having been detailed to set all mines and traps. As these ten - known as the "Suicide Club" - were crossing "V" Beach to board the destroyer waiting in the "River Clyde", a shell from the 9.2 howitzer, "Asiatic Annie", pitched 20 yards away, but fortunately did not explode.
      The "Suicide Club" drew lots for one Distinguished Service Medal, a Naval Decoration, which was drawn by, and awarded to a Sergeant Whittington, "who entirely deserved it", says Mr. Tatham, and as did most certainly every one of those ten brave men, adds the General Reader!
      Mr. Tatham then went to France, where he remained until Nov., 1917, in the same company of R.E., in the R.N. Division, then called the 63rd (R.N.) Division.
      While still in the ranks, he was promoted Sergeant, later becoming Farrier Sergeant.
      During the Battle of Arras at Gavrelle on the 16 April, 1917, Mr. Tatham, then a Lance Corporal, rendered conspicuous service, for which he was mentioned in Despatches, and was awarded the Military Medal, "for Zeal and Devotion to Duty".
      Mr. Tatham was fortunate enough to escape unhurt during his service in France; and in November, 1917, he was posted to a Cadet School at Newark, subsequently receiving his Commission as 2nd Lieutenant, Royal Engineers. In June, 1918, he proceeded to India, and joined the 1st King George's Own Sappers and Miners, at Roorkee. He served on the North-West Frontier, until November, 1919, and took part in the Afghan War and resultant Campaign, being promoted Captain.
      Mr. Tatham resigned his Commission in September, 1919, and received a temporary appointment in the Indian Forest Service. He was posted to the United Province, and served until October, 1921, when he proceeded to Oxford University. On leaving Oxford in 1924, having obtained the Special Diploma in Forestry, he did not rejoin the Forest Service, but became a Master at Upton Preparatory School, Ripple, near Deal.
      In December, 1925, he accepted an appointment with a Firm of Marine Lighting Engineers at Brentford, Middlesex; and in October, 1926, he became a Director and representative of the Firm in India, with Headquarters at Calcutta. He has retained his connection with the Army as Captain in the Army of India Reserve of Officers attached to the Sappers and Miners.
      Address: 6 Clive Row, Calcutta, and Bengal Club.
      He married, Thursday, 2 June 1927, at St. Mark's Church, North Audley Street, London, Mary, only dau. of Lt.-Col. Sir James Leigh-Wood, K.B.E., C.B., C.M.G., and Lady Leigh-Wood, of 24, Great Cumberland Place, W.1. [Curtis]
    • William Edmund Heathcote. He was born 1898. Educated at Michaelhouse and Keble College, Oxford. He served in the First World War with distinction, was mentioned in despatches and was awarded the Military Medal. He served in France and Gallipoli. Obtained a Special Diploma in Forestry. He was a Master at Upton Prep. School, Ripple, near Deal. He was Director of a firm of Marine Lighting Engineers and represented his firm in India, living in Calcutta. [TFSA]
    • Returned to England after his marriage - all 5 children born Marylebone 1931-1947 & died Surrey NW 3Q1955.
    • Passengers on RMS Edinburgh Castle, dep Southampton 01 Feb 1951, dest Durban, resid England, address Pinehurst, South Ascot, Berks: 1st class: Tatham, Mr W H, 54, director; Mrs, 45; Master G, 4; cabin class: Tatham, Master D, 14.
      Passengers on RMS Capetown Castle, arr Southampton 30 Mar 1951, emb Durban: resid England, address Pinehurst, South Ascot, Berks: 1st class: Tatham, William Heathcote, 55, director; May Leigh, 45; David Heathcote, 15; George Heathcote, 5.
    • Mr. William Heathcote Tatham has been appointed a director of New Zealand Loan and Mercantile Agency Co., Ltd., to fill the vacancy on the board created by the death on December 9 last of Mr. Arthur P. Wood. [Brisbane Courier, 08 May 1933]
    Person ID I1223  Tatham | Heathcote branch | Descendant - male line
    Last Modified 27 Jun 2012 

    Father William Henry Tatham,   b. 20 Mar 1857, Natal Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 17 May 1910, Natal Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 53 years) 
    Mother Daisy Florence Parker,   b. abt 1875, Durban, Natal? Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 06 Jan 1898, Dundee, Natal Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age ~ 23 years) 
    Marriage 17 Oct 1895  St Cyprian, Durban, Natal Find all individuals with events at this location   [2, 3, 15
    William Henry Tatham & Daisy Florence Parker
    William Henry Tatham & Daisy Florence Parker
    Marriage register
    Family ID F0385  Family Group Sheet

    Family Mary Leigh Wood,   b. 26 May 1905, Paddington Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 12 Aug 1975, St Thomas' Hospital, Lambeth Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 70 years) 
    Marriage 02 Jun 1927  St Mark, North Audley St, Mayfair Find all individuals with events at this location   [3, 8, 9
    • The marriage took place yesterday, at St Mark's, North Audley-street, of Mr William Heathcote Tatham, only son of the late Mr and Mrs W H Tatham, of Dundee, Natal, and Miss Mary Leigh-Wood, only daughter of Sir James and Lady Leigh-Wood, of 24 Great Cumberland-place. The Rev W Pennyman and the Rev G Johnstone officiated.
      The bride, who was given away by her father, wore a gown of white satin beauté with long tight sleeves, the skirt and bodice embroidered with pearls and diamanté and bead fringes. Her tulle veil was held in place by a coronet of orange-blossom, and formed a train, and she carried a bouquet of white roses. The two bridesmaids, Miss Edith Tatham (sister of the bridegroom) and Miss Joan Dolbey, wore dresses of pale blue georgette trimmed with shaded blue fringe, with head-dresses of tissue and diamanté, and they carried bouquets of pink roses.
      The best man was Captain Lockhart, RE, and a reception was held after the ceremony by the bride's mother at 28, Great Cumberland Place. Among those present were:-
      Mrs Tatham, ... ... Captain and Mrs Wand Tetley, [apparently no other Tatham family guests].
      The bride and bridegroom afterwards left for a motoring honeymoon, Mrs Tatham wearing a pale green crêpe de Chine dress with a frisca coat to match, and a green and fawn hat. [The Times, 03 Jun 1927]
    Children 
    +1. Living
    +2. Richard Heathcote Tatham,   b. 19 Aug 1932, 27 Welbeck St, Marylebone Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 25 Sep 2012  (Age 80 years)
    +3. Living
    +4. Living
    +5. Living
    Last Modified 03 Feb 2012 
    Family ID F0387  Family Group Sheet

  • Event Map Click to display
    Link to Google MapsBirth - 02 Jan 1897 - Sunnyside, Dundee, Natal Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsBaptism - 31 Jan 1897 - St James, Dundee, Natal Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsEducation - aft 1908 - Michaelhouse, Balgowan, Natal Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsEducation - - 1914 - King's School, Grantham Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsOccupation - Engineering Pupil, Fraser & Chalmers - Aug 1914 - Erith Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - Aug 1914 - The Laurels, Woolwich Rd, Belvedere Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsMilitary Service - Captain, 1st King George's Own Sappers & Miners - Jun 1918 - Sep 1919 - India Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsOccupation - Indian Forest Service - Sep 1919 - Oct 1921 - India Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsEducation - 1921 - 1924 - Keble College, Oxford Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsOccupation - Master, Upton Preparatory School - 1924 - 1925 - Ripple, Deal Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - Oct 1926 - Calcutta Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - Apr 1927 - Calcutta Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsMarriage - < - 02 Jun 1927 - St Mark, North Audley St, Mayfair Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsMarriage - 02 Jun 1927 - St Mark, North Audley St, Mayfair Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - Mar 1951 - Pinehurst, South Ascot Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - Dec 1953 - Pinehurst, South Ascot Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - - 1955 - Marylea, Heathside Rd, Woking Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsDeath - 16 Aug 1955 - Tramerton, Brooklyn Rd, Woking Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsProbate - £22,020 0s. 3d. - 14 Nov 1955 - London Link to Google Earth
     = Link to Google Maps 
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    Pin Legend  : Address       : Location       : Town/District       : County/Region       : State/Province       : Country       : Not Set

  • Sources 
    1. [S06] Parish Registers, baptisms, St James, Dundee, 31 Jan 1897.
      b 02 Jan 1897

    2. [S10] Tatham Family in South Africa, by Gill Tatham.

    3. [S04] H Curtis: Notes for a Pedigree of the Tathams of Co. Durham.

    4. [S11] Newspaper, Natal Witness, 08 Jan 1897.
      birth notice

    5. [S02] BMD Index, death reg Surrey NW, 3Q1955.
      age 58

    6. [S12] Passenger Lists, Capetown Castle, 30 Mar 1951.
      age 55

    7. [S37] Army Lists & Records, Service Record, 16 Nov 1914.

    8. [S05] The Times, forthcoming marriages, 19 Apr 1927.

    9. [S02] BMD Index, marriage reg St Geo Hanover Sq, 2Q1927.

    10. [S05] The Times, forthcoming marriages, 30 Dec 1953.
      dau Angela

    11. [S05] The Times, forthcoming marriages, 28 Mar 1962.
      son Richard

    12. [S05] The Times, death notice, 22 Aug 1955.

    13. [S63] Gill Tatham.

    14. [S14] National Probate Calendar.

    15. [S06] Parish Registers, marriages, St Cyprian, Durban, 17 Oct 1895.