William Gant (1824-1906)
Born in Middlesex around 1824, William Gant was employed by the Council to draw up plans of the town for drainage and planning purposes. Becoming employed by the council as Borough Surveyor, he lasted around 3-4 years in this role before losing his job and facing potential ruin by being imprisoned for failing to supply plans for which he had been contracted. As a result of the potential imprisonment, he went into hiding in London for a period, however he eventually provided the plans that the court had ordered to be produced.
He evidently returned to Hastings, for census returns show him as living at various addresses around the town throughout both his tenure and later life, taking a second wife following the loss of his first. In 1851 he was lodging with Solomon Bevill at 10 High Street, the 1861 Census showing him to be married to Augusta Langham and living at Havelock Road and 1881 at Alexandra Villa, Ellenslea Road. Gant was also known to be an active member of the Cinque Ports Volunteers, attaining the rank of Lieutenant in the Cinque Ports Artillery by 1863.
Gant was the architect for the Fishermans Church, which was constructed between 1853/1854.
References & Notes
- UK Census Return 1851
- UK Census Return 1861
- UK Census Return 1881
- Brett Manuscript Histories Vol. 10 Chap. 70 Pg. 135