Tom Dews Obituary

Reproduced by kind permission of the Hereford Times

September 1931

County Magistrate's Death at Letton

Herefordshire has lost a well known, and respected, figure by the death of Mr. Tom Millet Dew which occurred at his residence, Letton Court, on Sunday.

Until his health failed about two years ago, Mr Dew, who was 72 years of age, played a prominent part in Public Affairs, particularly in the Weobley District, where he sat as a County Magistrate for twenty six years and was a member of the Rural District Council and the , now defunct, Board of Guardians for a similar period,

Mr. Dew was also known for his philanthropic work and took a keen interest in the welfare of Hereford general Hospital, to which he was an annual subscriber for many years.

The deceased gentleman was Lord of the Manor of Letton and was chief landowner in the Parish. He was twice married, his first wife, who was Miss Blisset, the surviving member of the well known Herefordshire family, who had their seat at Letton Court, passing away in December 1901. His second wife, Miss Sysum, whom he married twenty four years ago, was a Wiltshire lady. She survives him but there are no children.

Letton Court, as stated formerly, the seat of the Blisset family, was completely destroyed by fire in 1924 and the family heirlooms, worth thousands of pounds, perished in the flames. It was handsomely rebuilt in 1925/26 but there is little doubt that Mr. Dew's health was permanently affected by the disasterous fire.

Weobley Tribute

At the Weobley R.D.C. meeting on Tuesday Mr. A. Mathews made a sympathetic reference to the death of Mr. Dew, who, he said, had been a member of the Council for many years. Mr. Dew had been a regular attendant until his health failed and they were sorry to lose him. He proposed a vote of condolence with the family be passed.

Sir John Cotterel seconded and associated himself with the Chairman's remarks. Mr. Dew and Sir John did a lot of useful work and his advice was always sound.

The members then stood for a moment, in silence, as a tribute to the memory of their colleague.

The Funeral

There was a large attendance which took place at Letton Church on Thursday afternoon and, at which, the officiating clergymen, in the absence of the vicar (the Rev. H.O. Grimes) were the Rev. C. H. Hodgson (Vicar of Lugwardine, and ex Vicar of Bredwardine) and the Rev. A. Lancaster Osman ( Rector of Llangibby and former Vicar of Letton)

The chief mourners were, Mr. J. Dew, The Stocks, Privett, Hants (Brother), Mr. and Mrs. G. Sysum, Garsden Manor, Malmesbury, Wilts. (Brother in Law & Sister in Law), Major R. W. Burton - Phillipson (Shrewsbury, formerly of Bredwardine)

The indoor staff were represented by Miss N. Passey and Miss E. Beck, and the outdoor staff by Mr. H. Kite, Mr. A. E. Abrahams and Mr. T. J. Watkins, and Mr. J. N. G. Jenkins, Mr. E. Stokes, Mr W. Williams, Mr. F. Griffiths, and Mr. C. Abraham. Of the latter, Messrs. Kite, A.E. Abraham, Watkins, Stokes and Williams acted as bearers from the residence to the neighbouring church.

Among those also attending were, Sir Godfrey Cornewall, Bt., Commander A.J. Windebank and Mr. G. M. Brierley (representing the Weobley Branch of the Magistrates). The former two gentlemen, the Rev. W. Marshall and Mr. W. Pantall also representing the Weobley R.D.C.. Mr. 2 W. J. Bowers, (Hereford), Mr. F. R. James (Hereford), Mr. D. H. P. martin, (representing Mr. H. K. Foster, Hereford), Dr. J. Steed, Mr. O. Steed, Mr. D. Steed, (Staunton on Wye), Mrs Hodgson (Lugwardine), Mrs. Lancaster Osman (Llangibby), Mr. J. Guest (Broxwood), Mr. A. Beck, Rev. T. Ellis (Winforton), Rev. F. E. and Mrs. Sutcliffe (Byford), Mr. A. L. Thomas (Hempstead, Glos.), Mr. R. A. Morgan (Carlisle, formerly of Letton)Mr. W. Davies (The Castle, Eardisley), Mr. W. Lapthorne (Hereford) Mr. W. Morgan (Dorstone), Mr. F. Taylor (Hurstley Court), Mr.and Mrs. A. Trumper (Staunton on Wye), Mr. and Mrs. T. A. Trumper, Mr. J. E. Morris (Willersley), Mr. A. E. Yapp (Winforton), Mr. C. Smith (Dewkins Moor), Mr. S. J. Preece, Snr. (Eardisley), Mr. D. Prosser (Kinley), Mr. D. Price (Kinley), Mr. J. Lewis (Kinley), Mrs Kite, Mr. Fred Kite, Mrs. Stokes, Mrs. Williams, Mrs. Baker, Mrs. E. L. Jones (Post Office), Mrs. Abraham, Mrs. E. L. Lewis (Kinnersley), Mr. A. E. Musto (Bredwardine), the Misses Reece (Letton), Mr. L. Godsall (Letton), Mrs. Hurley (Letton), Mr. W. D. Prosser (Kinley), Mr. and Mrs. Riley (Red Ley), Mrs. Hodgkiss (Letton), Mr. J. Hodgkiss (Letton), Mr. A. E. Price (Bridge End), Mr. J. Ratcliffe. Mrs. Ratcliffe (Letton), Mr. J. Bagley (Letton), Mr. H. Percival (Letton), Mrs. Wilson (representing Mr. J. Wilson), Mr. H. Percival (Letton), Miss Corbett (Letton), Mrs. L. Preece, Mrs. Tong, Mrs. Price (Staunton on Wye), Mr. and Mrs. N. Percival, Mrs. Prosser and the Misses Prosser, Mr. W. Price (Kinnersley), and others.

The County Constabulary represented by Supt. G. T. Brierley (Leominster)

As the cortege entered the Church, Mrs. A. L. Thomas, of Hempstead, Glos., who was on the organ for the occasion, played Handel's "Largo". The service included the hymn "On the Resurrection Morning" and at the conclusion the organist played the "Dead March" from 'Saul'

The internment took place in the grave in which the late Mr. Dew's first wife was buried, and had been lined with phlox, white sweet peas, roses and evergreens by A. E. Abraham, Head Gardener at Letton Court.

Floral Tributes

Among the wreaths were tributes from Mrs. Dew, Mother, Jim and Maggie (Malmesbury), Jim and Florrie, George and Millie (Garsden Manor), All at Letton School, the Indoor Staff, the Outdoor Staff, Mr. H. K. Foster, Major and Mrs. Davey (Kinnersley Castle), Dr. and Mrs. Steed, Mrs. Dearman - Edwards and daughters, Mr. and Mrs. G. M. Beck and Mr. and Mrs. A. Beck. Professor and Mrs. Merton (Winforton House), Mr and Mrs. Morris (Willersley Court)

The funeral arrangements were carried out by Messrs. Greenlads, Hereford.