A Rowing Match having been agreed upon between Preston and Astley (TB) versus Savile and Drew (KS), Roberts through jealousy, on account of their not using his boats (which are considerably too heavy to race in) informed Williamson of it, who instantly stopped it, and set the parties concerned in it an Impositions of such a nature as to prevent them from racing for the remainder of the half.
Another sailing match took place, subsequently to those already mentioned – the following were the boats engaged in the contest.
General Hurst Osborn
Colonel Preston Astley
Commodore Milman Lowther Sen.
Captain Bewicke Somerton
Admiral Warren Vialls
The Boats after a beautifully contested race (the two first boats, having been side by side the whole way down to Roberts’) came in, in the following order. 1 General – 2 Colonel 3 Commodore 4th Captain 5th Admiral. This was the last race of the season of that description though it is hoped that they may be resumed every year.
C. D. Osborn
On the 13 June 1834 another match was sailed between five half deckers also manned by Town Boys
The Commodore Bewicke and Somerton
The General Milman and Lowther
The Colonel Preston and Astley
The Captain Warren and Vialls
The Admiral, Hurst and Osborne
This race was won by the Commodore, the General coming in 2nd and the Colonel, Captain and Admiral third, fourth and fifth.
On Thursday June 12th 1834 a match was sailed between 4 half deckers of Roberts’s manned by Town Boys, the boats were,
The Commodore, Milman and Lowther
The Admiral, Bewicke and Somerton
The Captain Hurst and Osborne
The Colonel Preston and Astley
The match was won by the Commodore, the Colonel and the Captain coming in second and third, the Admiral being forced to desist from the race in consequence of springing a leak.
R.P. Warren P.O.
On Friday August 2nd a new eight oared boat was launched from Roberts, and after a bottle of wine had been broken over her bow she was christened the ‘Victoria’ amidst the enthusiastic cheers of all the Westminsters. In the evening eight fellows picked out of the whole school, rowed her up to Putney steered by an old Westminster of the name of White, where he generously gave a most splendid dinner to his crew, and a few other Westminsters who happened to be there. The evening was passed with the utmost conviviality and the health of the generous host was drank with enthusiastic cheers, he also gave a breakfast on the following morning to those who had shared his hospitality on the preceding evening. The names of those who rowed in the ‘Victoria’ were
Those marked with an asterisk were Kings Scholars.
E U Sealy
In consequence of the accident mentioned in the preceding number Williamson sent round the following regulations about the water.
1st No boy is allowed to go on the water except in one of Robert’s boats, and with his permission or knowledge – and if a boy has a private boat he must keep it at Roberts and use it only when he (Robert) thinks proper.
2 The bounds are from Westminster to Hammersmith bridges
3 The Season is from Easter to Bartholomew Tide
4th No boy may stay ashore anywhere, but he may take refreshments down to the boat.
5th The boats when done with should be left at Roberts’
E U Sealy
On Tuesday evening June 11, a most distressing accident occurred, which threw a gloom over the whole school. Four King’s Scholars, Monckton, Stedman, Savile and Webber, went on the water on a small sailing boat belonging to Stedman, contrary to the advice of Roberts, who warned them of their danger for the wind at the time was blowing higher than the oldest inhabitants of London remembered. They had not proceeded far before the boat was upset by a sudden squall. Three of them swam away and were picked up. But the fate of the fourth, Webber, was not so fortunate. He made a few strokes but soon sunk. Boats from Lambeth immediately put off to his assistance with drags and succeeded in finding him after he had been underwater almost ten minutes. He was taken to the White Lion a public house on the Lambeth shore, where every possible remedy was made use of, but in vain. On the following day an inquest was held on the body when the jury found a verdict of ‘accidental death’. He died deeply regretted by the whole school and College in particular, who immediately went into mourning and attended his funeral. No blame at all is attached to Roberts, who advised them not to go on, but as the boat was a private one belonging to Stedman he could not actually prevent them. This is the first fatal accident that has occurred at Westminster on the water for upwards of 40 years. A subscription was raised by the TBs and KS, which amounted to 12 pounds to be distributed among the watermen who lent their assistance on regaining the body.
The Dean of Ripon expressed his gratitude for the manner in which the melancholy event was regarded throughout the School, and fully satisfied that no blame was attached to any one, said that if he had a son prepared he would send him to Westminster the very next day.
E U Sealy
In order that the fellows might bathe without losing their clothes and being otherwise molested as formerly a piece of canvass 30 yds long and 6 or 7 high was this year (1825) put up at Milbank at Dr. Goodenough’s expense.