Edmund Fisher

2nd Lt Edmund Fisher

Edmund was the third of five sons of the late Herbert Fisher, and brother of the Right Honourable H. A. L. Fisher, of Commander W. W. Fisher, C.B., M.V.O., and of Charles Fisher who went down with H.M.S. Invincible in the battle of Jut­land. He was one of the first Dragon boarders in Mr Clarke’s House. Born in 1872, he came to the Dragon in 1882 and left in 1886. He went to Haileybury, where he was in the Football XV.

Edmund FisherEdmund FisherHe became an architect, and was trained in the office of Mr Basil Champneys. In 1915, being well over military age and ineligible for active service, he went out as an orderly to the Hopital Temporaire, Arc en Barrois, organized by Miss Bromley Martin for French soldiers, and was there through the summer, mainly helping in X-ray work. Later he succeeded in being accepted for active service, and having completed his training for the Royal Fleet Auxiliary, crossed to France on the 5th June 1917.

He took part in fighting in the Ypres salient, and again in the battle of Cambrai. He died on Easter Sunday, 1918, through an illness contracted at the Front. He leaves a widow, the daughter of Mr. Douglas Freshfield, and five sons and two daughters. When a boy at the Dragon School, his witty and good-natured humour made him most popular. He was extremely fond of animals, and would creep up to a horse or cow or bull in a field, and could always get hold of the animal and stroke it.

A correspondent writes:

‘Edmund Fisher was an architect, little known to the general public, but appreciated, in the circle of those who follow the development of our English arts and crafts, for a distinctive and unmistakable gift which stamped itself on everything which came from his mint. He had a sure and sober taste and a singular talent for making his houses appear to grow out of the ground as natural parts of the surrounding scenery. For the most part his work lay in the sphere of domestic architecture, but the beautiful hall of Somerville College, Oxford, and the Protestant Church at Rome, are examples of felicity in other directions.’

He also designed our School Museum and carpenter’s shop—the Maurice Church Memorial. Architecture, however, was but one of his artistic interests—he was an admirable judge of painting and porcelain—and but a small part of a life largely and most happily spent in country pursuits. He was a good rider to hounds, and at one time master of a pack of beagles: indeed, no form of country sport was alien to him. In conversation he was pithy and humorous, in judgement always independent, in observation alert. The war has claimed no gentler or more spirited victim.

When Edmund first went out he found his Divisional Ammunition Column near Messines. The Division is known as the Irish Division, and many of the officers had been in France since Mons. He was generally employed to look after camps of mules and horses, and to send and often to accompany ammunition to the batteries. At one time he was made C.O. of a number of pack animals to help in an advance; but when the time came, it was found that wagons were more convenient. From Messines he was moved to Ypres to take part in the August attack, and from there he went to the neighbourhood of the Somme. When on the move he was generally sent on ahead to arrange billets for the convoy, 500 horses, and 500 men. He liked the French peasants and a great deal of the life in France, especially the planning and building of a winter camp for the Division with the remains of French villages left by Germans. He also was asked to design a Christmas card for the Division, and did an Ulsterman and Home-ruler sharing the Convention plum pudding. They had, however, to abandon the comfortable camp to take part in the Cambrai fighting, and after that were sent into new billets south of St. Quentin, where he was taken ill and sent home. He is buried in Brockenhurst Churchyard in Hampshire.

 

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