FRIDAY, JANUARY 24th, 1941



Great Western Railway officials from Chester and other stations arrived by train at Dolgelley on Monday to pay the last tribute of respect to the late Sir Robert Vaughan, K.B.E., Garthmaelan, who was popularly known as “The railwaymen’s friend.” The funeral had been fixed to take place at Llanfachreth Churchyard at 2 o’clock on Monday, but owing to the weather the funeral was postponed till Wednesday.

The funeral of Sir Robert Vaughan, K.B.E., D.L., J.P., Garthmaelan, Dolgelley, took place at Llanfachreth, on Wednesday.

The service, which was bi-lingual, was taken in the Parish Church by the Rev. Bonner Jenkins, vicar. The 23rd psalm was sung, and also two hymns “Jesu, Lover of my Soul” and “Abide with me,” and at the close of the service the “Dead March” in (Saul) was played by Mr. Llew. Evans, organist. The committal service at the graveside was taken by the Archdeacon of Merioneth (the Rev. D. Jenkins, vicar of Portmadoc).

The chief mourners were Lady Patricia Vaughan (widow); Major General John Vaughan (brother) and Mrs. Vaughan, Maesybryner; Mrs. M.M. Owen, Brynifor (sister). Col. P.H. Enthoven and Mrs. Enthoven, Dolrhyd (sister and brother-in-law) were unable to attend owing to illness.

The bearers were Messrs, Wm. Owen, (undertaker), Rhys D. Jones, Thos. Jones, John Rogers, J.R. Jones, W.G. Roberts, John Howell Edwards, Richard W. Morris and Hugh Williams.

The G.W.R. Company was represented by Messrs. A.Y.R. Brown, divisional superintendent, Chester (who also represented Sir Felix Pole, Paddington) and Mr David Blue, district goods manager, Liverpool; J.F, Anstey, district goods manager, Shrewsbury (who also represented Mr. A. Maynard, chief goods manager, Paddington, and F. C.A. Coventry, superintendent of road transport, Paddington, and W. Humphreys, assist. superintendent of the road transport, Paddington). The Central Wales Division was represented by Mr. T.C. Sellars, district trafic manager, and Mr. F.W. Harris, divisional superintendent mechanical engineering dept., Oswestry.

Merioneth County Council was represented by Alderman D.E. Davies, Barmouth; Councillors R.R, Jones, Talsarnau; A.E. Hughes, Dolgelley; John Evans, Llanfachreth; Dr Evan Lewys Lloyd, C.M.O.H.; Messrs. Richard Jones, chief constable; Hugh J. Owen, clerk; W.J. Rowlands, deputy-clerk; R. Barnett, secretary, L.E.A.; K. Howells, treasurer; Norman Jones, architect; Ellis Jones, land agent; Hugh E. Davies, surveyor; Joseph Evans and T.G. Hughes, assistant surveyors.

Major H.M. Richards, Caerynwch; Grammar School Governors: the Rev. Chancellor J.W. James, rector; Messrs. John Lloyd, M.A., headmaster, E. J. Pugh, Clerks. Dolgelley Rural Council: Mr R. ap T. Rowlands and Mr Daniel Williams. Mr Rowlands also represented the N.F.U., he being the chairman of both bodies.

The Vicar announced that a memorial service would be held at Llanfachreth Church at 10:30 a.m. on Sunday week and at Llanelltyd at 3:00 p.m., the same day. The funeral arrangements were efficiently carried out by Councillor Rhys D. Jones, stationmaster, Dolgelley.

Lady Vaughan received over a hundred letters from friends far and near, who were unable to attend the funeral owing to the weather conditions.

Sir Robert was made a K.B.E. in the Coronation Honours List in May 1937, but he regarded his proudest title to be that of “The Railwaymen’s Friend”. The title of “Sir Robert” is very familiar in Merioneth, as it was borne by three of the deceased’s predecessors, the last of whom died in 1859.

An Appreciation

In the death of Sir Robert Vaughan at the age of 75, Merioneth has sustained a great and grievous loss. A scion of the famous family of Hengwrt and Nannau, he received the best advantages of education and culture in his youth and might have aspired to enter a wider sphere of activity on behalf of his country. But, true to the traditions of the Nannau family, he did not forsake his own heath but chose to live the simple life among the country folk and to give them in many and varied ways a long and faithful record of service. He became a practical farmer and thus gained valuable experience of the difficulties of Welsh farmers generally. All his life he gave of his best to improve their lot. It was no wonder therefore that the parishioners of Llanfachreth elected him at an early age as their first representative on the Merioneth County Council, of which he was formerly Chairman and was later elected Alderman.

In virtue of his membership, he was placed on several committees, but no office was more congenial to him than that of Chairman of the Smallholdings Committee. He devoted much of his time in visiting farms in all parts of the county. As an agriculturist, he was the prime mover in establishing the Farmer’s Co-operative Society at Dolgelley, which has been a boon to all its members. Another hobby of his was to keep goats, and he continually encouraged others to do so that the poor and the sick could have a good supply of milk. Not long ago he gave a talk in Welsh on the wireless on the advantages of keeping goats.

Sir Robert presided over the Bench of Magistrates at Dolgelley and was Deputy Chairman of the Merioneth Quarter Sessions. He was an ideal Chairman of the Bench, He was strict,
but was just and fair to all, and had implicit confidence in the opinion and guidance of all those responsible for the administration of justice in the county. His knowledge of human nature, his intimate |acquaintance with the affairs of his neighbours and his shrewd common sense stood him in good stead in dealing with difficult cases. He performed his duties as a magistrate without fear or favour and all acknowledged that his judgments were fair.

He represented the County Council on the governing body of Dr, Williams’s School, and in May 1940, he was elected Chairman of the Dolgelley Grammar School Governors. In politics, Sir Robert was a Conservative and he was induced to contest the seat in Merioneth at the 1924 election against Mr. Haydn Jones (now Sir Haydn Jones, M.P.), Liberal, and Mr. Jones Roberts, Labour.

In religion, he was an ardent and faithful member of the Church in Wales. For many years he was people’s warden in St, Mary’s Church, Dolgelley, and he was a member of the Representative Body of the Church in Wales. Latterly, Sir Robert attended the Welsh services morning and evening regularly in Llanelltyd Church and was most anxious that Welsh services should be adequately maintained in every parish in the county.

Another of Sir Robert’s interests was the Great Western Railway. At one time he transacted a good deal of business on behalf of the Company and came to know its high officials well, who consulted him on several matters pertaining to the section from Ruabon to Pwllheli. But he knew most of the employees of every rank in his immediate neighbourhood and was most popular with them. Every year he gave a dinner to railway employees of Dolgelley district to which chief officials of the section were invited.

Though his deeds of kindness were not confined to one: section of the community, perhaps it is safe to say that railwaymen will miss his generosity most. Never did an appeal for help on behalf of a sick man fall on deaf ears, When Sir Robert returned from London after being invested by the King in 1987, the railwaymen organised a rousing reception for him; he was conveyed on a G.W.R. lorry from Dolgelley Station to the Square when a large concourse offered him their warmest congratulations on the honour bestowed on