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Brentford Surveyors - Frederick William Lacey
IntroductionPeter King has researched details of the first four Brentford Surveyors appointed following the Public Health Act 1875. See intro page for further details.
Frederick William LaceySurveyor to Brentford Local Board 1881-1889
Having in 1881 returned from South America, where he was employed as Assistant Engineer to a hydraulic mining company (gold ?), he was one of 114 candidates for the position of Surveyor to the Brentford Local Board. From a short list of five, he was appointed on the 7th June 1881, at a salary of £175 per annum, taking over from Mr J Figg.Duties
In addition to the day to day tasks of a surveyor,one of his first, and arguably the most important during his time at Brentford, was to prepare for the towns proposed main drainage scheme.
This scheme, estimated at a cost of £32000, was to a plan by Messrs Gotto and Beasley, Lacey having the responsibility for its satisfactory installation and completion.
Inadequate drainage by way of cesspools etc had been a problem for many years.
The water in the local brook was at times badly contaminated with sewage, and those responsible for the condition of Thames water, into which the brook emptied, had threatened legal action if the Brentford Board did not clean up their act. Reports by the Boards medical officer regularly refer to drinking water pumps and wells being contaminated with sewage.
The sewage works were constructed on a site off the Ealing Road on the Brentford Ealing border. The collection point for the towns sewage was located at Town Meadow, on land purchased by the Board in 1878. Here a pumping station was built in 1883 to transfer the sewage to the Ealing Road site for treatment.
The scheme was successfully completed in March of 1884, and in June of that year Lacey was awarded a £50 per annum salary increase.
The 1883 pumping station survives inTown Meadow.Private Work
One of the conditions of his appointment in 1881, was that he could not undertake private commissions. This restriction was lifted in July of 1884, and as a result various private work was undertaken. The council minutes for February 1887 state “Plans for a proposed house on the Butts Estate to be built by Mr F W Lacey were approved”. Known today as The Gables in Brent Road, Lacey lived here with his family until his departure from Brentford in 1889.
Other private commissions include, the Post Office that stood in Market Place, the Ealing Tavern in Ealing Road and alterations to the Castle Hotel that stood in the High Street.Departure
He remained as surveyor to Brentford until 1889 when he was selected from 172 applicants for the position of surveyor to Bournemouth, a post he held until his death at the age of 60 in 1916.
Many of his buildings survive in Bournemouth, all of which are listed.
He designed the Undercliffe Road. Opened on 6th Nov 1907, a bronze plaque situated near Bournemouth Pier lists F W Lacey as engineer to this project .
Frederick William Lacey's lifeBorn: 2nd October 1855 Foundry Yard, St John, Maddermarket, Norwich The son of William Randall Lacey, Master Builder and Amelia Lacey (Clarke)
1861 Census St Faiths Lane Mountergate Norwich
1871 Census 44, Grafton Sq Clapham
1871 census St Johns College Hurstpierpoint Sussex
1881 Census The Lodge Grafton Sq Clapham
Marriage: 20th Sept 1882 St James Church Camberwell
Whilst in Brentford, lived at 100 Windmill Rd, and later in Upper Butts in the house he designed, now known as The Gables, Brent Road.
1891 Census Grasmere, Alum Chine Road, Bournemouth
1901 Census Alum Chine Lodge, West Cliff Road Bournemouth
1911 Census Alum Chine Lodge West Cliff Road Bournemouth
Death: 24th March 1916 Frederick William Lacey 60 Pleuro pneumonia/cardiac failureDeath: 2nd January 1944 Louisa Lacey 85
They are buried in East Cemetery Bournemouth, in the shadow of the listed chapel, which he designed.
Frederick and Louisa had a further child:
QualificationsInst of Civil Engineers. Elected associate member 19th May 1885 and elected Member 16th February 1897
Inst of Municipal and County Engineers. Elected Member 1884.
In 1877 Lacey was appointed assistant engineer to the Colombian Hydraulic Mining Coy, South America. He worked under a Mr W S Welton an Associate member of the Inst of Civil Engineers.
The 1881 census, completed when W R Lacey and family (including F W who had recently returned from South America) were living in Grafton Sq, shows a Pitt Welton a “cousin” , born Sth America.
Page published September 2011