William James Pomphrett was born on 17 November 1881 in St Helens, Lancashire, his father, Peter, was 35 and his mother, Ann, was 30. He married Mabel Hunt in January 1903 in Prescot, Lancashire. In 1908 aged 26 when he was still a labourer he served in the 2nd VB South Lancashire Regiment and then the 6th Battalion South Lancashire Regiment possibly as part of the 1St E W Lancashire Cyclist Artillery, Territorial Force Attestation.
After serving in the army he became a Stationary Engine Driver in Oil and Colour Factory.
In 1935 the electoral roll shows him residing at 12 Mersey Cottages, Speke Road in Garston Liverpool and by 1939 he was an electrician working at Bryant & May, a British company created in the mid-19th century specifically to make matches. It was founded in 1843 by two Quakers, William Bryant and Francis May. William worked there for 24 years until his retirement in 1948. His daughter Ivy worked there for 7 years before the war and William’s son Robert served as his apprentice until he was also qualified and worked alongside his father. Robert met his wife Edith Holland at the factory. She worked there for eight years until they married in 1935.
The Liverpool Byant and Mays factory was the last of its kind in the UK but eventually closed in December 1994. Today the factory is ‘the Matchworks‘ a grade 2 listed building and the Matchbox all using the existing buildings.
He died on 1 July 1955 at the age of 73 leaving his estate of two thousand, eight hundred and thirty-two pounds to his son Robert William Pomphrett by then a maintenance electrical engineer and Robert William Angus, a retired foreman electrician.
William and Mabel had 8 children, 4 of whom survived to adulthood.
William James Pomphrett
Edith Annie Pomphrett
Robbert William Pomphrett
The information on this page has been verified using:
- Documentation: Birth, Marriage and Death Records etc. Click this link to view these documents
- Family Oral History
- The author’s own knowledge
If any family member can add to the facts on this page or thinks a correction needs to be made I would welcome any information.