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Brentford Councillors - William Henry Walter


Janet McNamara has researched details of the men who served as Brentford Local Board Members and Councillors, see intro page for more details of early local government structure.

William Henry Walter

The name H Walter MD is carved on the Monument (1909) as a member of the Local Council and W H Walter MD on the Hospital in 1928.

This would appear to be William Henry Walter who in 1928 was living at Hambledon Croft, 17, Windmill Road, Brentford with the local directory giving his qualifications as MD Brux., MRCS Eng. LRCP Edin. LSA Physician and Surgeon.
This was the house lived in by one of the local doctors and his family in the 1960s or 70s and is the four storey house on the right before the railway bridge.

William Henry Walter was born in Somerset in 1856.
The 1861 census show him a scholar aged 5 living with his parents.
His father Walter W Walter (35) is shown as a member of the Royal College of Surgeons England ? ? ? Apothocaries Company and General Practitioner.
Their address was Lower Street, Stoke sub Hamden. Somerset.

In 1871 he was at school in Epsom and by 1881 was 25 and married to Ellen G (Georgina) (24) living at Knapp Villa, South Street, South Petherton, Yeovil with a daughter Beatrice M.G aged 1 and a son Ernest H C aged 3 months.
Ellen and the children had all been born in South Petherton.
They had a boarder, Henry Webber (19) who was a student of medicine. A cook, a nurse and a housemaid were also resident.


He appears to be in the same house in 1891 but by then called Ivy Villa and he was a widower. His profession is shown as MD Physician and Surgeon, Registrar.
Beatrice and Ernest are 10 years older, there were 3 boarders – a physician and surgeon, a clerk in holy orders and one living on his own means. There was also a Cook and a housemaid.
Ellen Georgiana Walter had died in October 1890 aged 34.
Her death was recorded in Yeovil in December 1890 5c 319.

By 1901 he had remarried and moved to 17, Windmill Road. His wife was Maria (49) who had been born in Clifton, Somerset. He was a Doctor of Medicine with 'Surg.' added later.
The rest of the household was daughters Clare Randle 27, Beatrice 21, Edmund? Doughty grandson aged 5 who had been born in Nottingham. There was one general servant. (There is a marriage of a William Henry Walter in Nottingham RD in Oct/Dec 1892, a Maria Pinder / Rendle has the same marriage reference).

The 1913 directory shows him at the same address with the house called Hambledon Croft.
On November 8th 1930 the local newspaper reported that while driving across the Great West Road Dr Walter had been in a collision with another car and that Mrs Walter had been seriously injured. She died the following March (see the report of her funeral)

Dr Walter’s death is recorded in the March quarter 1932 aged 76. Brentford 3a 312.
His obituary with a report of his funeral says that he had been living in Brentford for nearly 40 years, had been active in setting up Brentford Cottage Hospital and was their oldest practising physician and surgeon at the time of his death.
He had been a member of the Conservative Club where he won challenge cups for billiards, Brentford Philanthropic Society, was a Freemason and had been a Warden at St Faith’s Church, Windmill Road. During his time as a Councillor he had served as Chairman of the Sanitary Committee and been on the Education Committee.
On a photograph of the Council 1909/10 he was shown as the vice-chairman.

William Henry Walter of Hambledon Croft who died 13 February 1932 Probate London 5 April to Beatrice Mary Georgiana Walter spinster.
Effects £2,849. 13.4d.


Other material

Janet has also provided newspaper accounts of the funerals of Dr Walter in 1932 and his wife Maria Walter in 1931, and a photo from his time as Vice Chairman to the council in 1909/10. To be added as time permits.


Funeral of Maria Walter

15 March 1931
Death of Mrs Walter

It is with the deepest regret that we announce the death of Mrs. Maria Walter, wife of Dr. Walter, of 17. Windmill Road, Brentford, who passed away on Sunday. The deceased was 79 years of age. She was the daughter of Mr. Richard Pinder H.F.I.C.S. and the widow of the late Capt. Edgcombe Rendle. One of her five daughters was the subject of a famous picture, "Souls Awakening” by Mr. Sant R.A.She became the wife of Dr. Walter 38 years ago, and they resided in Somersetshire and Norwich before coming to live in Brentford 36 years ago.

The late Mrs. Walter had a charming nature and rendered valuable assistance, as far as it was in her power, in connection with the Brentford Hospital Committee, by whom she was greatly respected and admired. At the beginning of November last year she was being driven in Dr. Walter's motor car when another motor car collided with it on the Great West Road. Mrs. Walter was badly injured and had to be conveyed to Brentford Hospital, but she progressed so well that she was able to return home. She was taken ill again, however, and gradually became worse.

We are sure that residents will join with us in expressing sympathy to Dr. Walter on his sad loss, more particularly, perhaps, as he has been the victim of a bereavement only a comparatively short time ago, when his son-in-law, Mr. Clark, passed away.


The funeral was on Thursday afternoon at Ealing and Old Brentford Cemetery. A short service was conducted in the cemetery chapel by the Rev. C.A. Peacock. C.B.E., a relative of the deceased lady, and the principal mourners present were: Mesdames John Clark, Peacock, Bawden and Mr. and Mrs. Jim Cargill. Among the members of the general public were County Councillors W.H.Mills, Messrs. T. Stallabrass J.P., W.H. Stephenson, T. A. Baker (secretary Brentford Hospital House Commitee), and Dr. and Mrs. Ruxton.

There were a number of beautiful, wreaths and the list of those who sent these tokens is as follows :
Dr. and Mrs. Ruxton; Mrs. Squire; Mrs. Hayden; Miss Hayden; Consulting and Medical Staff of the Hospital; Viva, John, and George Edgar and Audrey; May; Mona ; Kathleen and Charlie; Mrs. and Miss Saunders; Mr., Mrs. and Miss Sladden; Mrs. Parsons and family; Mr. and Mrs. Barlow; Mr. and Mrs. Bayliss; Mab; Mr. and Mrs. Stephenson; Kit ; Directors of G.W. Engineering Co.; House Committee of Brentford Hospital ; Mr. Charlton and family ; Mr. and Mrs. Milne; In loving memory of a devoted wife from her sorrowing husband; Trix; Mr. and Mrs. Eyres and family; Mr. and Mrs. Hughes; Mr. and Mrs. Knowles; Mrs. Teakle; Mr. and Mrs. F. Wickenden; Rev. and Mrs. Tuohy ; W. and N. Madgeway; Mr. and Mrs. Stallabrass; Nursing Staff, Brentford Hospital ; Mr. and Mrs. de Lissa Williams; Clare, Min and Drummond.

Mr F. Wickenden carried out the funeral arrangements.


Funeral of Dr W.H.Walter

Account from County of Middlesex Independent, Saturday February 20th 1932

Death of W.H. Walter


The Funeral

It is with the deepest regret that we announce he death of Dr. William Henry Walter, of Windmill Road, Brentford, he was 71 years of age, and the oldest practising physician and house surgeon of Brentford Hospital. The deceased was born at Stokes-under Ham of a very well known and respected Somersetshire medical family. His father, Walter Winter Walter, grandfather, and great grandfather were all members of the medical profession. Mr. Walter Winter Walter was a keen archaeologist and his private collection can be seen at the present day in the Walter room of Taunton Museum. The late Dr. Walter was a student at St. Bartholomew's Hospital, and in his younger days was a keen sportsman, his favourite game being billiards. He was also a captain in the Somersetshire Light Infantry, and during the war he played a part as captain of a unit.

At the outbreak of the European War he sought to render practical service. Disappointed at being too old for certain posts for which he was admirably fitted, he had a good deal to do with the organisation of the local Volunteer force, of which he became commandant.

When he came to live in Brentford nearly 40 years ago he became a member of the late Conservative Club, Somerset Road. The club house, it is believed, was where Nell Gwynne lived at one period. Dr. Walter was a favourite of the club members, and it was with some satisfaction that he won one or two challenge cups at billiards. He soon became actively interested in Brentford Cottage Hospital, which was at that time situated in the Butts, and he rendered valuable and long service as a member of the House Committee. His kind and benevolent disposition led hint to become a member or a number of charitable organisations in the county town, including the Brentford Philanthropic Society and he was also a Freemason. He served St. Faith's Church, , Windmill Road, Brentford for a few years as a vicar's warden.


For several years Dr. Walter was a member of the Brentford District Council, of which he was at one time chairman. He will be remembered chiefly in this connection with the work he did as chairman of the Sanitary Committee.

He induced the Council to adopt a strong attitude with regard to several slum properties in the district, and he had the satisfaction of seeing a notable improvement made in this direction during his term of office—a fact to which graceful allusion was made at the time he was unanimously elected to the chair.

Dr. Walter, in an interview with the "County Middlesex Independent" on his retirement from the Council declared that he would like to continue his service to the town, but, he said "The real work that wants to be done demands a few young men who will see that people have a chance of living decently. It takes more time than I can afford to give, for no councillor should be merely an ornament or a self-seeker. I owe it to myself and my patients that I should do little less than I have been doing "—a remark not perhaps to be surprised at from one who has just made a record number of attendances, up to that time, at meetings connected with the Council, its committees, the local Education Committee, and other public bodies.

Fate dealt very unkindly with the late Dr. Walter during the past two years. A few months after he had lost his son-in-law his wife also passed away. It will be remembered that while he was riding with the doctor, in a motor car luring November, 1930, there was an accident in which the late Mrs. Walter sustained severe injuries. She had a relapse after some four months' illness, and succumbed on March 15th of last year.

The death of Dr. Walter was due directly to his duties, which he loyally refused to neglect in any way in spite of his age. He had an unusually large number of night cases to attend just prior to his demise. On one occasion when it was so terribly foggy he left home in the early hours of the morning to attend a patient. Most of his cases were of people suffering from pneumonia, to which he himself was a victim. He was taken ill on Thursday last and died on Saturday evening after being unconscious during the day. He is mourned by one daughter, Trixie, who has been residing with him since the death of his wife.

When the funeral service tool: place at Sr. Faith's Church, Brentford on Thursday, very few people were dressed in mourning, as, although the doctor had been unable to give any instructions, he had always expressed his views in that direction.

A large number of people were present, including Doctors Neil, Parsons, Bhandari, Moore , Parker, W. H. B. Ruxton, and M. Ruxton, Capt. and Mrs. Crow, Mr. Stallabrass, Mr. T. A. Baker (hon. secretary of Brentford Hospital), Mr. F. Cross (hon. treasurer of Brentford Hospital), Mr. and Mrs. Harry Milne, and representatives of the societies and clubs with which the deceased was formerly associated. Many of the people in the congregation were patients of the late Dr. Walter.


The chief mourners were: Miss Walter (daughter), and Mrs. James Cargill (step-daughter) and her husband.

The service was efficiently conducted by the Rev. G. W. Tuohy, M.A. (vicar), who also performed the last rites at the cemetery, where another large crowd of people gathered to pay their last tribute.

The floral emblems were very numerous, and were sent by: Miss Walter (daughter); Mr. and Mrs Cargill; “Tommy”; Mrs. Baylis and son; Staff of Brentford Hospital; Mr. and Mrs. Harry Milne ; Capt. and Mrs. Hume Crowe ; Doctors R. C. Neil, A. D. Gowans, R. Moore; Mr. and Mrs. Francis Young ; George West and Arthur Purkis; Mr., Mrs. and Miss Thirtle ; Mr. and Miss Stallabrass; Mrs. Reynolds and Mary ; Mr. and Mrs. Sladden; Mary, Eveline and Tommie; Mrs. and Miss Saunders; Mr. and Mrs. Lightfoot and family; Mr. and Mrs. Barlow; Executive members of the Brentford Women's Conservative Association ; Mr. and Mrs. Delissa Williams; Mr. and Mrs. Hann ; Mr. and Mrs. W. H. Martin ; Mrs. Squire ; Mr. and Mrs. Magdewicz ; Mr. and Mrs. Eyres and family; Mr. and Mrs. Hayden and family; Mr. and Mrs. Wickenden and Linda ; Members of the Boston Park Bowling Club; Arthur Charlton and family; Mrs. Teakle ; Mr. and Mrs. J. Knowles; I. I. Wickenden ; Mrs. Luscombe ; Doctors Ward and Lowry ; House Committee of the Brentford Hospital ; Dr. and Mrs. Ruxton; Great West Engineering Co. ; Mr. and Mrs. Ledsham ; Mr. and Mrs. and the Rev. Noel Stephenson; W. H. Carter ; Mr. and Mrs. Hidden and Peggy; Dr. Parker.

The funeral arrangements were carried out by Mr. F. W. Wickenden, of Avenue Road, Brentford.


Page published June 2012