Watts Chapel Windows

Sunday, August 11th 1996

Dear Mr. F. Barnes
I saw your plea for help on Barnardo’s Boys etc in the Echo last night.
I am sorry but I have very little information on the subject, but you might be able to help me. I have been researching the
Titanic disaster for many years now, and am trying to do an Obituary on each and every crew member.
Recently I heard there was a Barnardo boy aboard and have tried to find his memorial.
I was told the Watts School was and there is (or was) in Greenock but you mention a Watts School in Norfolk? If this
is right can you tell me if it is still in existence? Perhaps this is the one that young Humby (see his Obit end) attended and
his memorial is still in the Chapel?
It will be another piece of the massive jigsaw if it is.
Very best regards and good luck with your hunt.
Brian J. Ticehurst.

Humby. Frederick (Fred) 2 Golden Grove. Southampton. Plate Steward. 16 (Hampshire)
From the Titanic relief fund minute book number 2. Southampton area
Date June 3rd 1913
Case number C442 that a grant of 10/- be provided from the compassionate fund to provide milk during illness.

(From Night and day Barnardo’s June 1912 page 33 jazz two photos of Fred)

Fred Humby was Southampton born and had been orphaned at an early age, together with his brother Frank they were sent
to the Watts Naval Training School at Greenock.
Frank was the first boy to obtain the £25 grant from Admiralty, and so his name heads the Roll of Honour.
Frederick was also trained for the Navy, but did not quite come up to the high physical standard demanded.
So he left The Watts and after a time in private service he went to sea in the stewards department of a Liverpool ship.
He had relatives at Southampton and finally he made his way to the port, were he signed on as a Second Saloon Pantryman
on the Titanic.
His last night on shore was spent at our local ever open door (Barnardo’s) Two school fellows of Freds were also there, and
the three had a very happy evening.
Frederick Humby’s name was inscribed on a Memorial Tablet in the little Chapel at Watts Naval Training School at
Greenock. The building is still in place at Greenock but no longer used as a training establishment and there is no Chapel
and the plaque has been removed and there is no trace of it
(Source Mrs Cooperwhite Watts Library Greenock)

Titanic -- The “unsinkable” ship that went down with more than 1.600 lives-- has captured public
imagination for years; long before the blockbuster film. The story has become a legend. But within that
legend are many individual tales, including at least one that did not feature on the big screen.
The story of Barnardo Boy, Frederick Humby.

Frederick Humby , originally from Southampton, grew up in Dr Barnardo's care from the age of nine, leaving
Watts Navel Training School in 1910 with his sights set firmly on a career at sea. And in 1912, aged just 17,
he won the prize job of steward on a new liner - the most luxurious of its kind ever. The ship was to carry
some of the world's richest and most famous people across the Atlantic to New York. The hype was
tremendous. The massive ship , declared ' unsinkable', was named Titanic. On 15th April 1912 , as the world
knows, the Titanic did the unthinkable - and sank taking the lives of passengers and most of the crew,
including Frederick. His loved ones shocked by the tragic loss of such a young life, joined with former school
friends and staff from Watts, to pay for a stained glass window in Frederick's memory. But now comes
another twist in the story. Pat Liddiard , Barnardo's Centre coordinator takes up the tale. "The window was
installed in Watts Naval School Chapel bearing the inscription at its base "To the Glory of God and in
memory of Frederick Humby, a boy hero, who perished on board S. S. Titanic 15th April 1912, aged 17 years.
" It remained as a reminder of Frederick until the Chapel was closed . At that time the window was removed
and transferred to Barnardo's Chapel in Stepney Causeway. In 1968 though, Stepney's Chapel also closed and
the window was removed and put into storage for safety. It was last known to be at Boys Garden City,
Woodford Bridge, Essex in 1969. Since then it has disappeared without trace.
Pat says "Who knows what happened. Did it end up in another Church ? There is no record of any sale or gift.
But is this beautiful piece of stained glass still commemorating a young life , and am important part of
Barnardo's history ? "We would like to find it" Article first published in the Barnardo Guild Messenger.
1999. 2005, the search goes on. Do you have any information ?
If so, please contact Heritage Centre coordinator. Barnardo's, Tanners Lane, Barkingside, IG6

A message posted on a Watts forum

The windows are being well looked after in Houston Texas.
My son was recently searching the internet for information about Frederick Humby, and as we learned he was a
boy from Watts Naval School who later died aboard the Titanic. We did not know the relationship between Fred
Humby and Watts School until recently. I have been contemplating sending you, John 'Tank' Wilcox and others
an email for about a month now, and regrettably, I noticed that John Wilcox recently died.
My friend and I bought the two memorial windows at an auction in 1976 in Houston, Texas USA and have owned
them ever since. I have the window memorialising Frederick Humby. I have kept Fred Humby's name alive for the
past 30 years, and at one time, had a pet parrot named for him. The window I own has a nautical religious scene
with the large Jesus surrounded by Angels overlooking two biblical figures in a boat, and the inscriptions honouring
Frederick Humby. My friend has the window of the Knight in shining armor. The windows are signed by Leonard
Pownall 1913.
The windows are in excellent condition and well cared for. We are proud to be their caretakers.
My wife, Linda, and I have been reading your message board for the past 4-6 weeks.
We are sorry to hear of Tank's passing. I know he would liked to have known the status of the 'windows', and had
searched for them. Maybe you can forward this email to his family with our condolences. We also regularly read
the message board of the County School
You may forward this email to any of those folks if you like. Your and Mr.. Wilcox's email addresses are the only
ones I had recorded.
I look forward to hearing from you, and some of your other Watts boys.
Jim Ellis

Above: Watts Chapel

Above left :The Watts Chapel windows dedicated to Frederick Humby

Bottom left : The word inscribed at the bottom of the window

Many thanks to Fred Barnes “Historian” (Much Wenlock) and Richard Eastwick (Parkstone Sea School)
for information used on this page.

Page Compiled June 2011

All images and text copyright © to Goldings Old Boys reunion members

Watts Chapel today

The unfolding story and mystery of the Chapel Windows and how they turned up on anther Continent