Western Daily Press

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Two recent articles from the Western Daily Press:


07 April 2004

The family of song-writing music hall genius Harry Wincott thanked the Western Daily Press yesterday for helping to find his unmarked pauper's grave. The author of such famous songs as Any Old Iron and Boiled Beef and Carrots would have been a very rich man if he had been writing today.

But in his time many songwriters worked for a pittance and there were no performing rights royalties.

Somehow he ended up in Yeovil, Somerset, where he died in 1947 with not even the money to mark his grave in the town cemetery. Last week, pensioner Frank Leamon, of Martock, near Yeovil, launched an appeal for a memorial.

Yesterday, Mr Wincott's greatgranddaughter Karen Gee, who lives in Christchurch, Dorset, said the family now wanted to install their own headstone. She has been researching the life history of her great-grandfather, but had not been able to establish where in Yeovil cemetery he lies.

Now cemetery manager Manny Roper has identified the site for local historian Jack Sweet, and today Mrs Gee and her father will visit the site.

Mrs Gee said yesterday: "We are very grateful for the research that has been done and to the newspapers for highlighting my great-grandfather.

"I think we plan a simple family headstone which would make reference to his song writing."

Mr Wincott was a Londoner who produced 2,000 songs - among them the World War I soldiers' favourite Mademoiselle from Armentiers for his sons who were in the trenches.



08 April 2004

The family of music hall legend Harry Wincott visited his unmarked grave in a Somerset cemetery yesterday and vowed to have a memorial put in place. They also appealed to anyone who knows more about Mr Wincott's final days in the county to get in touch.

The Western Daily Press told last week how Martock pensioner Frank Leamon, 82, launched an appeal for a memorial stone after he learned Mr Wincott, who wrote classic songs such as Any Old Iron and Mademoiselle from Armentiers, was buried in a pauper's grave in Yeovil.

Mr Wincott, whose real name was Walden, was a Londoner who composed 2,000 songs, but was working from late Victorian times to the 1920s when song-writers were not protected by royalties and sold their work cheaply.

Publicity about Mr Leamon's appeal alerted the Wincott family, who knew he was buried in Yeovil cemetery but not his exact spot.

Yesterday Mr Wincott's grandson Sid Walden, of Bournemouth, visited the grave with his wife, Audrey, daughter Karen Gee, and grandchildren Jennifer, aged 10, and Andrew, 13.

Mr Walden, 77, met his grandfather only twice, the last time when he was just 13.

If anyone has any information they can contact the family at the website www.harrywincott.co.uk.

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