|William Meath Baker | People from Stoke-on-Trent|
| index: B |
William Meath Baker 1857-1935
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The family who built Fenton [also see William Baker]
Take a 'walk' around Fenton
Key facts: William Meath Baker was the only son of Revd. Ralph Bourne Baker. Revd. Ralph Bourne Baker was the brother of William Baker who left all his estates to him on his death in 1865. William Meath Baker continued the family tradition of public benefaction. He built Fenton town hall at his own expense.
|father: Rev Ralph Bourne Baker||mother: Frances Crofton Singer|
William Meath Baker
|1857||Born 1st November 1857 at Hilderstone (Staffordshire)|
|1863||William Baker IV (his uncle) bought an estate called Hasfield Court, in Gloucestershire.|
|1865||William Baker dies and WMB's father inherited the estates - the family move to Hasfield.|
|WMB educated at Eton and Trinity College, Cambridge|
|1875||WMB's father dies and W.M.B became country squire at Hasfield Court, Gloucester (see census details below)|
|1886||Awarded M.A. degree|
|1888||Built Fenton town hall at his own expense. Started development of shops and houses in the area of the town hall|
|1935||WMB died 15 January 1935|
|He was a keen mountain climber often climbing in the Swiss Alps.|
|Became High Sheriff of Gloucestershire|
|How the Baker
estate and potworks was transferred to William Meath Baker
In 1863 William Baker IV (the uncle of William Meath Baker) bought an estate called Hasfield Court, in Gloucestershire. William made plans to change it by refacing the brick walls with stone and adding a porch, but he died before the move was accomplished and the alterations were completed by his brother Ralph. William died on the 16th of August 1865 and the Staffordshire Advertiser reported that the day of his funeral was one of general mourning in Fenton. He was buried in Fenton Churchyard and the funeral was attended by many of the workers from his factory.
His brother, the Rev Ralph Bourne Baker inherited the factory and the estates at Hasfield, Gloucestershire and Doveridge Woodhouse. He married the Bishop of Meath’s daughter, Francis Crofton Singer, and they lived at Hilderstone where he was the incumbent until 1860.
Here his son William Meath Baker was born in 1 November 1857. The family moved to Hasfield Court in 1865 where Ralph Baker died in 1875. The property was inherited by William Meath Baker. He did not take an active part in the running of the factories at Fenton, which traded as William Baker & Co., but he made regular visits to Fenton where, like his uncle William he was heavily involved in the development of the town
William Meath Baker's involvement in the development of Fenton
In the early 1930s William Meath Baker began to wind down his interests in Fenton.
source: Andrew Dobraszczyc's notes
Dwelling: Hasfield Court
Census Place: Hasfield, Gloucester, England
Marr | Age | Sex
|Frances Crofton BAKER||W 57 F||Head||Ireland||Householder|
|Mary Frances BAKER||U 32 F||Daur||Ireland||House Holders Daughter|
|Letitia Jane BAKER||U 28 F||Daur||Ireland||House Holders Daughter|
|William Meath BAKER||U 23 M||Son||Staffordshire||Landowner B A|
|Alice Frances CROFTON||U 32 F||Visitor||Ireland|
|Helen Julianna JENKINS||U 36 F||Visitor||Ireland||Bond Holder|
|John BELMONT||W 59 M||Servant||Marwood, Devon||Domestic Servant Butler|
|Thomas SMITH||U 18 M||Servant||Aston, Gloucester||Domestic Servant Footman|
|Elizabeth An BEDDING||U 28 F||Servant||Forthampton, Gloucester||Domestic Servant Housemaid|
|Laura BOX||U 27 F||Servant||Llanrus, Monmouth||Domestic Servant Cook|
|Clara Louisa JAMES||U 32 F||Servant||Tipton, Staffordshire||Domestic Servant Ladies Maid|
|Kate LAKE||U 16 F||Servant||Ashleworth, Gloucester||Domestic Servant Kitchen Maid|
|Rose Emme COLEBROOK||U 19 F||Servant||Pembray, Carmarthen, Wales||Domestic Servant House Maid|
|Louisa WESTLAKE||M 39 F||Servant||Paddymore, Somerset||Domestic Servant Housekeeper|
The story is told of how Elgar (who was a friend
of W.M.B) , returning home from giving violin lessons, sat down at the piano
and, to unwind, began improvising.
Alice, Elgar's wife, commented favourably on the tune that emerged and Elgar responded by suggesting how certain of their friends might play it. The fourth variation was based on William Meath Baker.....