The Rev. William Fletcher
The Rev. William Fletcher who undertook the re-launch of the Grammar School in 1848 came from Staffordshire. He matriculated from Trinity College Oxford in 1829 aged 19, then became a Fellow of Brazenose, BA in 1833, MA 1835, BD 1845, DD 1847.
In 1835 he married Jane Marie Bainbrigge and they had children, the sons studying at the School.
He had answered an advert in The Times 7 July 1848, accepting the headmastership at a salary of £200 per annum. This inaugurated a long and influential family association with the school. When he came, it only had 28 pupils.
His eldest son William Bainbrigge b. 1840 is listed in 1861 census as medical student, in 1865 he is assistant fleet surgeon, and served in the RN until retirement.
The second son Edward Blakemore b. 1848 joined the Navy in 1861 and became a Lt. Instructor in 1890 he retired 1 year later.
The youngest son Walter John became an architect and surveyor FRIBA. Upon marriage to Augusta Passingham he moved into the Chantry next to the school and his practice was responsible for many buildings and improvement work around the County, including the present Church House next to the Minster. 1898 sees him on the committee of the Old Winburnians.
Walter's son Edward Keeling b.1880, enrolled in the Navy in 1898, after WGS, and in 1901 is on HMS Victorious. He moved into the Royal Marines in 1911. His war service was heroic, in July 1918 The Times lists him as Lt-Col and on 27 July records the award of the DSO. In 1919 a Bar was added to the DSO. These awards for "conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty" result from his foiling German counter-attacks late in 1918. He was badly wounded in the process.
Another of Walter's sons, Walter T Fletcher was a Major in the 4 th Dorsets during the War. Quite possibly the one who played as goalie in the OWA team in 1897. He followed his father's profession of Surveyor.
A nephew of Rev. William, Thomas Howard Keeling Fletcher, was at school on 1851 census. He was gazetted 2 nd Lt in the Army, but unfortunately drowned off Port Royal, Bermuda in 1868.
Graham Powell and Pat Trayler