A Tribute to Bill Gwilliam MBE

A Tribute to Bill Gwilliam, MBE

Severn and Canals Articles

Tolls for Pleasure Boats through Locks 1914

Tolls for Pleasure Boats through Locks 1914

Severn Navigation Bill, 1914. Steam Launch 1s. 0d.; Sculling row boat, canoe dingy 3d. Every other kind of pleasure boat 6d.; through locks and return same day. Annual payments: Steam launch £1; row boat etc 5s.; other pleasure boats 10s.

Pleasure Steamers on the Severn

Pleasure Steamers on the Severn

'Crowquill' of the Berrow's Worcester Journal of 5 September, 1931 gave the following details of early steamers on the Severn. 'Until 50 years ago there was only one steamer at Worcester plying up and down the river. Then a second arrived, and in the closing

Time & Tides across the year at Diglis

Time & Tides across the year at Diglis

WORCESTER people generally are perhaps unaware, that the River Severn is still tidal from the Bristol Channel as far as Diglis Weir.The fact was related to Bill by waterways expert and historian Max Sinclair, of Lower Broadheath. He explains that twice daily,

Michael Grundy writes:

No-one has done more in a lifetime than H.W ("Bill") Gwilliam to chronicle the history of the City of Worcester and County of Worcestershire. Importantly too, his prolific writings on the Faithful City's past have always been in a most readable, fascinating and absorbing form, full of colour and with a liberal sprinkling of humour.

After retiring from a distinguished career in teaching, Bill researched and compiled volume after typewritten volume on the history of the city and county of Worcester, covering a myriad of subjects such as folklore, pubs, crimes, newspapers, transport. rivers and, above all, "People and Places."

Eighteen years ago, when I began producing weekly features on local history for the Worcester Evening News, I received invaluable help from Bill, and I am sure many other local history researchers down the decades will have had cause to be equally grateful for his ready assistance.

Bill has always shown abounding enthusiasm for the extremely eventful and chequered past of Worcester and the county and has been a veritable font of knowledge on his painstakingly researched subject.

Little wonder that the Queen bestowed the MBE on him for services to the public. I know that the Buckingham Palace Investiture where he received the medal from Her Majesty was probably the most memorable day of his life.

Happily, Bill's vast writings are not being allowed to languish in numerous file folders on shelves around a bedroom at his Worcester home.

Two books of his work have already been published - "Old Worcester: People and Places" and "Worcestershire's Hidden Past" and are available in bookshops, having been produced by Halfshire Books.

I understand too that the Worcestershire Record Office has copied several of his volumes for the county archives, and I heartily applaud Pam Hinks for now so patiently making Bill's researches available to an even wider audience via the Internet.

Mike Grundy, Worcestershire Evening News