Rev T C Baines

Stop number YELLOW 2: Take the grassy downhill path immediately to your left of the cemetery gates and three rows down, and on your right you will find the family plot of the Baines family.
Baines family plot
Baines family plot
Read their story below and when you are ready to move on click on the dot/circle for F Reynolds.

The Baines family grave St John's Church, Desborough Road
The Baines family grave St John's Church, Desborough Road (SWOP THM12439)
Rev Thomas Charles Baines 1854-1928

I am the Reverend Thomas Charles Baines. Most people know me as Charles. My family are best remembered as being coal merchants because we traded in both Wycombe and Marlow and our coal carts could regularly be seen collecting and delivering coal in and around the local area. We did very well out of it as nearly every one had a coal fire in those days until gas became popular. We were also contractors for the removal and storage of furniture with a warehouse in Station Road.

Like the rest of my family I was originally a coal merchant and cartage agent which also meant that I was a railway agent too, organising coal deliveries via the railways. I married my wife, Julia (nee Hibbert), in 1881 and we lived at Aveling Lodge in Aveling Road. Julia was connected to the Wycombe Griffits family so it was a busy house with relatives coming and going a lot of the time. I became a councillor and was also a mayor of Wycombe.

I like to think that the Baines family have always been supportive of those in need and so I suppose it was only natural that I should begin to think about becoming a man of the cloth. So by 1911 I had become a Clerk in Holy Orders and was living with my wife at St Johnís Lodge. The life I lead now is far better for my soul and I feel that, in these troubled times, I can be of real service to those who need to keep their faith in God.

In 1913 the Baines coal merchants had got involved with a big Suffragette rally in West Wycombe, lending the ladies a lorry from which to rally their supporters. It ended in quite a riot in the High Street but I feel women do have a point, and now that theyíre proving themselves in every conceivable way I hope that their patriotism will be truly recognised.

Thereís no doubt that the Baines have done their bit to support the war effort and itís not been without hardship to the family firm as weíve had to part with a large number of our horses which have been requisitioned by the army fighting in France.
Baines Coal Merchants ad
Baines Coal Merchants ad

But it was uplifting to witness our men, the Territorials marching up to the station to go goodness knows where on that first day of the war in August 1914. And I take pride in the fact that I was one of the few non-military personnel allowed onto the station platform to say farewell to them.

Of course, since then Iíve provided support and counselling for the bereaved families who are often not suffering just one family loss but several. I moved to Bickenhill in Warwickshire last year (1915) but I still have strong links with Wycombe. In fact Iím here today to visit old Wycombe friends who have just heard that their second son has been lost at the Somme.

(Although there is a Baines family plot in the cemetery I will be buried elsewhere.)
Rev T C Baines researched by Sally Scagell and performed by Tony Davies
Rev T C Baines researched by Sally Scagell and performed by Tony Davies

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