Soham Grammarians - Ernest Neathercoat

Soham Grammarian Summer 1951



The death occurred suddenly at his home, Holbrook Park, Horsham, Sussex, on July 28th of Mr. Ernest Tom Neathercoat, C.B.E., Ph.C., D.L., J.P. (managing director of Savory and Moore, Ltd., for twenty-two years, and president, 1920-24, Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain), aged sixty-nine.

He was a pupil at the School before the First World War* and after being apprenticed to the late Mr. E. W. Lincolne, in Ely, his native town, Mr. Neathercoat studied at the School of the Pharmaceutical Society, London, passed the qualifying examination in 1901, and the "Major" the following year, gaining several medals and certificates.

He set up business in Weybridge, and Oatlands Park, Surrey, and soon became prominent in civic and pharmaceutical affairs. In 1909 he was elected president of the Thames Valley District Pharmacists' Association, and was returned at the head of the poll to the Council of the Pharmaceutical Society. He served on the Council continuously for the next thirty years, and during that time occupied almost every office.

From 1914-20 he combined the Society's vice-presidency with the chairmanship of the Weybridge Urban District Council, and during the next four years, while president of the Society, he served also as chairman of its board of examiners. In 1923 he received the C.B.E. for services rendered to the Home Office in connection with Regulations under the Dangerous Drugs Act. He was a member of the Departmental Committee that reported on the Pharmacy Act in 1930 and was a member of the Poisons Board, 1931-37. He served as the Pharmaceutical Society's treasurer, 1934-39 - a period covering the negotiations that led to the decision to build a new headquarters for the Society in Brunswick Square, London.

Mr. Neathercoat was defeated at the Council elections in 1939, and did not seek re-election. He was a past-master of the Farriers' Company, London, and a liveryman of the Patternmakers' and Needlemakers' Companies; a justice of the peace for the counties of Surrey and Sussex; a governor of the Royal Veterinary College and Royal Agricultural Society of England; a member of the management board of the British Empire Union; a Fellow of the Zoological and Royal Geographical Societies, and high sheriff elect for Sussex. He was chairman of the Prince of Wales general hospital, London, N.; a member of the board of governors, St. Mary's, St. Bartholomew's, and the Royal Eye Hospitals, London; a member of the visiting committee, King Edward's Hospital Fund for London, and chairman of the London North Eastern Regional Hospital Board.

In the Parliamentary election of 1924 he contested as Conservative the Gower division of Glamorgan, and in that of 1929 the Docks division of Cardiff. He was chairman of the Horsham and Sussex Conservative Associations.

During the 1939-45 war he was chairman of the Horsham District National Savings Committee and president of the Horsham area Air Training Corps. He formed a local unit of the Home Guard. Recently, Mr. Neathercoat accepted chairmanship of the Horsham Area Sea Cadets and War Cadets. The Ministry of Health accepted his war-time offer of a large portion of his country house as an emergency hospital, and the West Sussex County Council his offer of other buildings for civil defence.

The funeral was held at St. Margaret's Church, Warnham, Sussex, on August 3rd.

* Editor: Ernest T Neathercoat was admitted to the school in 1893. He spoke at the dedication of the WWI SGS Memorial in 1921.

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last update 18 Nov 2011