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The small green space called "Postman's Park" is tucked in between King Edward Street, Little Britain and Angel Street, near St Bartholomew's Hospital, to the north of St Paul's Cathedral. Under the sheltered area is a wall commemorating ordinary people who lost their lives trying to save others. This was the idea of the painter G F Watts (1817-1904), and the hand-lettered tiles were made by Doulton. Watts was something of a social radical who disliked the upper classes. This public memorial celebrates people who would perhaps otherwise have been forgotten. view of postmans park

memorial tile

Some of the ceramic tiles are separated by a classical green design. Others have an Art Nouveau floral border (see page 4).

Left: Mary Rogers, stewardess of the Stella, Mar 30 1899. Self sacrificed by giving up her life belt and voluntarily going down with the sinking ship.

memorial Doulton tiles

Above left: Herbert Maconoghu school boy from Wimbledon aged 13. His parents absent in India, lost his life in vainly trying to rescue his two school friends who were drowned at Glovers Pool, Croyde, North Devon. August 28 1882.

Above right: Samuel Rabbeth, medical officer of the Royal Free Hospital, who tried to save a child from diptheria at the cost of his own life. October 26 1884.

Below left: William Drake, lost his life in averting a serious accident to a lady in Hyde Park April 2 1869 whose horses were unmanageable through the breaking of the carriage pole.

Below right: David Selves aged 12 off Woolwich supported his drowning playfellow and sank with him clasped in his arms. September 12 1886.

memorial tiles

David Selves memorial

Amongst those also commemorated in the park are:

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Elizabeth Boxall aged 17 of Bethnal Green who died of injuries received in trying to save a child from a runaway horse June 20 1888.

George Lee, fireman. At a fire in Clerkenwell carried an unconscious girl to the escape falling six times and died of his injuries. July 26 1876.

George Stephen Funnell police constable Dec 22 1899. In a fire at the Elephant and Castle, Wick Road, Hackney Wick, after rescuing two lives, went back into the flames, saving a barmaid at the risk of his own life.

Henry James Bristow aged eight - at Walthamstow on December 30 1890 - saved his little sister's life by tearing off her flaming clothes but caught fire himself and died of burns and shock.

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John Clinton aged 10 who was drowned near London Bridge in trying to save a companion younger than himself. July 16 1894.

Robert Wright, police constable of Croydon. Entered a burning house to save a woman knowing that there was petroleum stored in the cellar - an explosion took place and he was killed. April 30 1893.

Sarah Smith, pantomime artiste. At Prince's Theatre died of terrible injuries received when attempting in her inflammable dress to extinguish the flames which had enveloped her companion. January 24 1863.

Thomas Griffin, fitters labourer April 12 1899. In a boiler explosion at a Battersea sugar refinery was fatally scalded in returning to search for his mate.

detail of tile

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Ernest Benning, compositor, aged 22. Upset from a boat one dark night off Pimlico Pier grasped an oar with one hand supporting a woman with the other but sank as she was rescued. Aug 25 1883.

Joseph Andrew Ford aged 30, Metropolitan Fire Brigade. Saved six persons from a fire in Gray's Inn Road bvt in his last heroic act he was scorched to death. Oct 7 1871.

Thomas Simpson died of exhaustion after saving many lives from the breaking ice at Highgate Ponds. Jan 25 1885.

William Donald of Bayswater aged 19, railway clerk, was drowned in the Lea trying to save a lad from a dangerous entanglement of weed. July 16 1876.

William Freer Lucas MRCS LLD at Middlesex Hospital risked poison for himself rather than lessen any chance of saving a child's life and died. Oct 8th 1893

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