BAMFORD, Alfred Bennett

1857 - 1939

Alfred Bennett Bamford, was born at Stanley Lodge, Romford, Essex on 11 January 1857, son of Charles Bamford, a linen draper's assistant, and his wife Joanna née Bennett, who married at Wirral, Cheshire in 1853. In 1861, living at Belmont Place, Romford with his parents, 45 year old Charles and 36 year old Joanna and his two siblings, Eleanor 5 and Mary 2. His father Charles, later became manager of Kemsley's, auctioneers and estate agents, and lived for many years at Stanley Lodge, Eastern Road, Romford. Alfred studied at Heatherleys School of Art and the Camden School of Art, exhibiting 'The Chapel of St Erasmus, Westminster Abbey' at the Royal Academy in 1883, when he was 26 years old and over the next 20 years exhibited a further six paintings, mainly architectural subjects. In 1901, a 43 year old artist/painter living at 30 Compton Road, Islington but in 1905 he took a position as Second Master at Chelmsford School of Art and Design and in 1907 became the Art Master at the Chelmsford School for Girls, the year that he married 37 year old Alice Hornby of Torquay and Romford, they had no children. His main medium was watercolours, although he also worked in pen and ink and oils with the majority of his subjects, which are within the Essex Area, always included buildings which he traced from original pictures and then reproduced several times again, often bringing them up to date with modern additions such as bicycles. These works were often romanticised with people, unfortunately usually not very well rendered, wearing costumes from an earlier period. A member and exhibitor at Ipswich Art Club 1901-1928 and owing to ill-health retired from teaching in 1927 and in 1930 moved to 'Mayfield', Newton-by-Tattenhall, Cheshire when he made a donation of 150 sketches to the town of Romford on condition that they should be exhibited. Bamford produced a large collection of sketches of Essex, including many of East Ham, Ilford, Barking, Dagenham and Romford. These included drawings, watercolours and book illustrations. Other donations were made at various times to Chelmsford Museum, the Liverpool Walker Art Gallery, Dudley Galleries and the Royal Institute of Painters and Water Colourists. Ilford Libraries received a collection of around 60 watercolours and drawings via the Brand collection which was purchased in the 1930s. Barking and Dagenham also has a collection of Bamford drawings, which are now in Valence House Museum. Bamford died at 'Mayfield', Tarvin, Newton-by-Tattenhall on 21 October 1939 at the age of 82. His wife Alice, who was born on 6 January 1870, died at 1 Cross Street, Port Sunlight, Cheshire on 29 January 1959, aged 88.




Works by This Painter