Vincent Harold Drewry
1st Jan 1884 - 1973
1st Jan 1884
Born in London Walworth Rd.
3rd April 1909
Married Winifred Frances Bray at St Paul's, Herne Hill.
7th April 1911
Birth of daughter Dorothy Drewry.
Death of Winifred Frances Bray in Bromley.
Died in Bromley.
Like his brother James, Vince was an engineer.
In the 1891 census, is shown as: Harold V. aged 7yrs .
In 1901 census, aged 17, Lambeth, Ocupation: Shorthand Clerk.
In February, 1892, in the Goodrich Road (Southwick) School record.
In January, 1894, in the Jessop Road (Lambeth) School record.
In the 1911 Census
Vincent H Drewry, Head, 27, married 2, Railway Clerk, Head (London) Office of Foreign Railway, b. Camberwell
Winifred F Drewry, Wife, 26, married 2, b. Camberwell
Daisy Rose, servant 17, single, Domestic Servant, b. Beckenham, Kent
Vince - WW1 :
The enlistment papers show that:
Vince's height was 5 feet 6 inches, weight: 10 stone 8 pounds.
He had knowledge of foreign languages and knew how to ride a motorcycle.
He was 32 yrs and 8 months.
Vince's current address was '38, Heybridge Avenue, Streatham'.
He had been educated by 'Private Tutor'
His father is a retired engineer. In his application Vince expresses a desire to be commissioned in the Engineers.
Vince gives his 'occupation or employment in civil life' as 'Engineering Stores Shipper'
Under 'Positions Held' he states that from 'May 1899 to present' he was "Assistant London Stores Superintendent, Central Argentine Railway Ltd".
The Central Argentine Railway was British owned.
Vince must have been only 15 years old when he started working with them. (The 1901 Census entry lists Vince as a 'Shorthand Clerk').
In 1899, the Drewry Car Company was yet to be registered. When it was, Vince was well placed.
Civil & Etherington (p.24) report that: "The Drewry Car Co Ltd. was registered on 27th November 1906 with its office at River Plate House, 13 South Place, London EC. This address was also the headquarters of a number of British owned Argentinian railway companies .."
Vince had 'Previous Military Experience' (no. 4808) in the 'Honourable Artillery Coy.' from 3 November 1915, as a driver, gunner, and bombadier.
He was discharged from that territorial force on the 9th August 1916 "in consequence of being appointed to temporary Commission in RE (Inland Water Transport Section)"
"Staff Capts. for Railway Trans. —9th May 1917; "
"Staff Capts. — 9th May 1917;"
The National Archives record that Vince was awarded the '1914-15 Star'. His rank was 'T/Capt.' in the 1.W.T.RE Corps. The 'Theatre of War' was East Africa.
A Russian Cigarette Case
My brother visited Vincent in the 1960's, and, amongst other things, was shown a jewel-encrusted cigarette case of great value. Supposedly, this was a gift from the Russian royal family, and if so may have been in relation to the sale of 20 armoured railcars reported in Civil and Etherington's excellent book (p.29):
"Drewry's largest turnover to date, partly due to increased war time production costs was recorded in 1917. No dividend was paid, however, due to uncertainty over settlement of the account for a Russian Government contract worth £7,500 for 20 armoured railcar chassis, which were being delivered as the revolution in that country broke out.
Someone paid up the following year, but whether it was the Russians or the British government (which had placed the order on the Russians' behalf) is not recorded. "
On 5th Oct, 1928, Vince and Winifred sail first class on the Almanzora from Southampton to Buenos Aires, Argentina. They return on the January 1929 on the Alcantra. Vincent's profession is given as 'Railway Officer'.
The visit to Argentina probably included Drewry Car Co. business.
In the passenger list their address in England is 49, Lewisham Hill.
In 1935, Vince and Win moved back to Beckenham.
The phone book shows them still there in 1953:
In the National Register of September 29th, 1939, Vince and Win are shown living at 'Woodstock', Beckenham Road, Beckenham.
Vince is still working for the Argentinian Railway. Looks like: 'Stones – shipping dept(?). London Argentine Railways'. Probably J. Stone & Co. of Deptford.
Birth: Mar 1884, Drewry Vincent Harold, St.Saviour, 1d 188
Marriage: Jun 1909, Drewry Vincent Harold, Camberwell, 1d 1427
Marriage: Jun 1909, Bray Winifred Frances, Camberwell, 1d 1427