Captain Hubert de Burgh FitzGerald Townshend (264)
|Date of Birth:||4 Apr 1867|
|Date of Death:||dunm Jul 1941|
|Father:||Henry John Townsend |
|Mother:||de Burgh, Jane Adeliza Clementina|
|See Also:||Table II ; Scrapbook ; Lineage ; Ancestors' Tree ; Descendents' Tree|
Hubert was born in Union Hall, Co Cork.
Hubert's biography can be seen on page 295 of 'Cork and County Cork in the Twentieth Century - Contemporary Biographies' by the Rev Richard J Hodges and published by W T Pike & Co in 1911. It has also been reproduced in his 'Scrapbook'.
Hubert started his education at Stubbington House, Hants but it is not know which school he attended after this and knowledge of his subsequent career is fragmentary and a little confusing.
A notice in the London Gazette of 16 January 1886 (1) shows that Hubert was commissioned Lieutenant in the 3rd/4th Battalion, The Buffs (East Kent Regiment) when he would have been aged 19. Some five years later he resigned his commission on 14 February 1891 (2) but it is not known why he did so.
Prior to the sale of the Castletownshend estate in June 1897, and presumably after his regimental service with The Buffs, Hubert was acting as sub agent to his Aunt Geraldine Townsend , who had a 'life interest successively' in the estate under the terms of her father's will. In a letter (3) to Edward Mansel Townsend  dated 4 June 1897 Geraldine wrote "I lend the shooting to Hubert now in return for his acting as my sub agent at the Castle and when it is unlet I allow him rooms there. I am very fond of him, he is charming".
After the sale of the Castletownshend estate, Hubert became sub agent for Lord Wicklow at Shelton Abbey, Arklow, and in a further letter to Edward Mansel dated 21 August 1897 Geraldine wrote " I heard at last from Hubert, from Lord Wicklow's place ……He is coming to remain there as sub agent and says he must work, and a good man of him, to have to turn his hand to the plough and become useful ………He will have charge of the heirlooms from the Castle and I told him to furnish his cottage near Shelton Abbey ………He hates the idea of leaving anything to be tampered with by Mr CLT" - Charles Loftus Townsend [5C01], who bought the Castletownshend estate. Geraldine goes on to say "I want to give him responsibility because I understand his proud & sensitive nature as he has been so much with me both before & after my widowhood & reminds me often of my poor only brother" – Henry John , Hubert's father. Presumably Hubert remained as sub agent to Lord Wicklow until he rejoined the army in 1900.
The next entry in the Gazette (4), dated 13 February 1900, records Hubert appointed a Captain in the 4th Battalion The Essex Regiment and the last entry (5), dated 4 March 1903, records his resignation from the service when he would have been 36. Burke's Irish Family Records shows that Hubert served in the 4th Battalion The Essex Regiment as a Captain in the Boer War in South Africa 1901-02; he was awarded the Queen's Medal and four clasps.
When Jane, wife of Jonas Morris' , died in Dublin on 30 October 1878 the Shepperton (5a) estate passed to Hubert, then aged eleven, and from it he received rental of £100 a year. He inherited £5,000 (£360k 2005 equivalent) from his great aunt Elizabeth Anne  in 1885 and it would appear that he also inherited £1,000 (£63.5k 2005 equivalent) on the death of Elise in 1896, second wife of Samuel Townsend . Thus Hubert would appear to have been a wealthy man. However, an entry in the London Gazette (6) of 21 February 1901 records - “In the High Court of Justice, in Bankruptcy. In the Matter of a Bankruptcy Notice dated the 8th.day of February, 1901. To Hubert de B. F. Townshend, domiciled in England during a part of the last 12 months, residing at Middlewick Camp, Colchester, in the county of Essex, but whose present residence the Judgment Creditor is unable to ascertain. TAKE notice, that a Bankruptcy Notice has been issued against you in this Court at the instance of Alexander Cahill (trading as A. Cahill and Co.), of 2, Tavistock-Street, Strand, in the county of London”
Little is known about Hubert after he resigned his commission in 1903 except for some details extracted from Guy's City and County Cork Almanac and Directory for 1907 and 1913 and the 1911 Irish Census.
Page 158 of the 1907 Directory shows that Hubert was appointed a Justice of the Peace in 1896 and was living at Shepperton - “Townshend Hubert de Burgh Fitzgerald, Shepperton Park, Leap JP 1896”. Page 175 of the 1913 Directory shows that he was still a JP living at Shepperton. Page 264 of the 1913 Directory shows him as a resident of Glandore and page 387 as a resident of Leap - the compilers might have got muddled as the two villages are very close together.
The 1911 Irish Census records that Hubert was a 43 year old landowner boarding in Miss Bridget Keenan’ Hotel in Glandore. Within this branch of the family it is believed that Hubert’s brother Maurice FitzGerald Townshend  moved into Shepperton about the time of his marriage in 1913 and Hubert himself went to live with his mother in Kilfinnan Castle, Glandore - the home of his mother's family.
The records of the Royal Cork Yacht Club show that Hubert joined the club in 1892 and was still a member in 1909.
Hubert's biography, referred to above, records that he travelled extensively to all parts of the world, sometimes in association with Sir Henry Lunn's cruising tours. As a keen yachtsman he took a keen interest in promoting regattas on the south coast of Ireland.
(1) London Gazette 25549 page 216 dated 15 January 1886.
(2) London Gazette 26134 page 815 dated 13 February 1891.
(3) All letters quoted are from the Llanvapley Papers.
(4) London|Gazette 27164 page 1005 dated 13 February 1900.
(5) London Gazette 27531 page 1420 dated 3 March 1903.
(5a) The entry for Shepperton in the National University of Ireland (NUI) Galway Connacht and Munster Landed Estates Database records "John Townsend held this property in fee at the time of Griffith's Valuation, when it was valued at £20 10s. Noted by Lewis as the seat of M. Townsend in 1837 and by Leet as the residence of Jonas M. Townsend in 1814. Shepperton is still extant but in poor repair."
(6) London Gazette 27291 page 1611 dated 5 March 1901