About this image
Francis Nicholas Smith was born on 31 August 1839, being the 2nd son of Martin William Tucker Smith M P, and was educated at Eton and Trinity College, Cambridge. He married Florence Catherin, daughter of William and the Honourable Mrs Drury-Lowe of Locko park (the latter was a daughter of Lord Scarsdale). Florence died in Bournemouth in 1879 aged 35. Francis Nicholas Smith married for a second time to Constance Ella (born 5 January 1857, died 13 September 1929), the youngest daughter of the Rev B Winthrop of London. Francis himself died on Wednesday 26 October 1927 and was interred in the private cemetery at Wingfield Park on Monday 31 October. Both his second wife, Ella, and his widowed mother, Louisa, are also buried at Wingfield Park. There were three daughters of the first marriage who, at the time of his decease were respectively, Mrs Walter Clutterbuck, Mrs J Bourne-Wheeler and Miss Rachel Smith (born 29 August 1872, died 30 October 1930). The issue of the second marriage were Bernard Ridley Winthrop Smith, Captain in the 1st Battalion Scots Guard, who was killed in the First World War (at Ypres) in November 1914 (aged 32) and Mrs E R Rennie (whose husband was British Minister at Helsingford (Helsinki), Finland. Francis family had good connections. He was older brother to Sir Gerard Smith, whose son, Mr Gerard H Smith was a Justice of the Peace. His own uncle was Sir Samuel George Smith, MP for Windover, and three of his cousins were M P s. One of them, Mr Roland Smith, of Duffield, represented South Derbyshire. Francis Nicholas Smith was a Justice of the Peace from 1869 until his death in 1927 (for 58 years). He was High Sheriff in 1907 and also a Deputy Lieutenant of Derbyshire. From 1868 to 1888, he was a partner in a firm of bankers (Samuel Smith and Co.) which subsequently became the Union of London and Smiths Bank being known at the time of his death as the National Provincial Bank. He was, for a number of years, chairman of the directors of Wingfield Manor Colliery (Oakerthorpe) prior to its acquisition by the Clay Cross Company. He was also a director of the West Hallam Colliery Company. He was reported as an ardent Conservative and for some years was president of the County Conservative Association. He also took an interest in the Derbyshire Hospital for Sick Children, and was appointed its President on 18 November 1816. Francis Nicholas Smith purchased Wingfield Park Hall on 22 July 1873. It had previously been in the occupation of the Wheatcroft family (canal carriers, marble works, etc of Buckland Hollow). The year after his death the property passed to Messrs Bowmers, farmers, who subsequently sold out to Mr D A Shaw. Mr Shaw s widow, Violet, is the present owner, but Messrs Sims, farmers, purchased the associated farm in c 1986. (Mrs Shaw owns the Hall and associated buildings and the immediate area, but the original, large walled garden has been built by members of the Sims Family. The Hall was considerably knocked about , modified and allowed to fall into decay by the Bowmers. Members of the Shaw Family are slowly tidying up the property, but some rooms on the first floor are still bricked up. This photograph is an A4 Fujifilm Pictro copy (trimmed) of an original signed photograph dated 1917. The photograph was showing signs of deterioration around the edges, possible due to animal glue used to attach it to a card backing. Whilst the original has dimensions of 225x195 mm, the A4 copy accommodated the head and shoulders without sizing or loss of any meaningful detail (Black and white slides and a scan of the original have also been prepared). The photograph was signed, F N Smith, 1917 (followed by an indistinguishable mark). The original photograph hangs in Wingfield Park Church.