The Glyns - Part 5

Part 5 - Sir Gervas Powell and Sir Arthur Robert Glyn

Gervas

Gervas, born on 3 October 1862, succeeded to the title on the death of his half-brother, George Turbervill, in 1891; he was 28 years old, an Oxford graduate and, at that point, a medical student.

Gervas Powell Glyn
Gervas Powell Glyn
Image courtesy of Bourne Hall Museum

Gervas had a very wide range of interests, many of which he shared with his younger sister, Margaret: they seem to have been very close, having a passion for music and collecting antique musical instruments. He travelled extensively and belonged to the Royal Geographical Society, but at an early stage he showed signs of mental instability and was frequently accompanied by attendants. One of his more unusual interests was the newly invented science of X-ray photography; he actually had the equipment for this at home and, remarkably, some of his images have been preserved.

Radiograph of Margaret Glyn's hand
Radiograph of Margaret's hand, taken by Gervas 1896.
Image courtesy of Wellcome Images and used under this Creative Common licence

Radiograph of Gervas's hand
Radiograph of Gervas's hand, taken by himself 1896.
Image courtesy of Wellcome Images and used under this Creative Common licence

On 19 April 1898 at St James's Church, Paddington he married 22 year old Dorothy Hislop, commonly known as Compigné1.

The marriage did not effectively last for very long, although the couple never divorced. In 1906 Gervas was found by the King's Master of Lunacy to be of unsound mind and incapable of managing his own affairs, although he did have spells when he was competent, and the Master said that he should be consulted about his affairs.

Dorothy left him and eventually went to live in Italy, at the 'Villa Glyn', Alassio. She died suddenly, whilst on a visit to Sidmouth, Devon, on 15 May 1947. Apparently Gervas provided for her generously and she attended his funeral. They had no children.

Despite his mental instability, Gervas was remembered fondly in Ewell for his kindness. He was on the committee of the Ewell Horticultural Society (as was his brother, Arthur) and allowed the Rectory House grounds to be used for flower shows; the Society still has an award called 'The Sir Gervas P Glyn Bowl'

Portrait of Gervas in later life
Portrait of Gervas in later life
Image courtesy of Bourne Hall Museum

Gervas died on 17 July 1921, aged 58, and there is a memorial to him in St Mary's, Ewell.

Memorial to Gervas in St Mary's Ewell
Memorial to Gervas in St Mary's Ewell
Image courtesy of Bourne Hall Museum

Arthur

Arthur was born in Ewell in 1870; he was educated at Winchester and Cambridge and qualified as a solicitor.

Arthur as a child
Arthur as a child
Image courtesy of Bourne Hall Museum

He became very involved in public life, not just in Ewell but in all of Surrey. He was particularly interested in education and, among other things, was a member of the Surrey Education Committee, Chairman of Governors of Epsom County School for Boys (subsequently renamed Glyn School in his honour) and President of the Ewell Old Boys Association.

An old photograph of Glyn School
An old photograph of Glyn School
Image courtesy of Bourne Hall Museum

Arthur Glyn and Dog
Arthur Glyn and Dog
Image courtesy of Bourne Hall Museum

He loved entertaining children, taking them on rambles and trips to London, with cream cakes thrown in. Perhaps this compensated for children that he hoped to have but never did (he was once engaged, but it was broken off a few weeks afterwards); he was a County Alderman, Justice of the Peace, Chairman of Ewell Parish Council, member of the Urban District Council and President of the Epsom and Ewell Lest We Forget Association. Altogether, one's impression of Arthur is of a kind, generous, unselfish and public-spirited man. From about 1902/3 he lived in the Well House, Church Street with his sister, Margaret.

Painting of Arthur
Painting of Arthur
Image courtesy of Bourne Hall Museum

Arthur laying a wreath on the War Memorial
Arthur laying a wreath on the War Memorial
Image courtesy of Bourne Hall Museum

Arthur died on 4 January 1942, after developing pleurisy, and the title was merged with the Glyn baronetcy of Gaunts. The very last Ewell Glyn, his sister, Margaret, survived him by four years and she will be the subject of Part 6.

Linda Jackson © November 2011

Links to previous and next parts.

Footnotes

1. Dorothy's father, Edmund Hislop, had died in 1888 and her mother, Maria, then married Horatio Compigné.

Adam Hogg
Adam Hogg
Hilda Andrews
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The Glyns
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Gadesdens
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Journey Time
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Thomas Tresize
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Blake Charles
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Blake Girls
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Barnards of Epsom
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EW Martin
EW Martin