Wednesday, 27 February 2019

The Bates Baronets

Sir Dawson Bates Bt OBE. Photo Credit: NPG

JOHN BATES (1803-55), Town Clerk of Belfast, 1842-55, was father of

RICHARD DAWSON BATES, of Brandon Towers, Strandtown, Belfast, Solicitor and Clerk of the Crown, who married, in 1920, Mary, daughter of Robert Foster Dill, and had issue,
John, died 1874;
RICHARD DAWSON, of whom we treat.
Mr Bates died in 1881, and was succeeded by his only surviving son,

THE RT HON (RICHARD) DAWSON BATES OBE JP DL (1876-1949), who married, in 1920, Jessie Muriel, daughter of Sir Charles John Cleland, and had issue, an only child,
Mr Bates received a knighthood in 1921.

He was created a baronet in 1937, denominated of Magherabuoy, County Londonderry.

Sir Dawson was MP for East Belfast, 1929-45; NI Minister of Home Affairs, 1921-43.

  • Privy Counsellor
  • OBE, 1919
  • Knight Bachelor, 1921
  • Baronet, 1937

In his retirement, strained financial circumstances and security (he constantly required a police escort) led him to rent Butleigh House, near Glastonbury, Somerset.

Magherabuoy House. Photo Credit: Magherabuoy House Hotel

It was here that he died in 1949.

Sir Dawson's body was flown back to Northern Ireland for burial at Ballywillan parish church.

Sir Dawson lived at Magherabuoy House, Portrush, County Antrim (above), from 1934-47.
Although Portrush is in County Antrim, the townland of Magherabuoy presumably straddles the bordering county of Londonderry.
Sir Dawson was succeeded by his only son,

SIR JOHN DAWSON BATES, 2nd Baronet, MC, (1921-98), of Butleigh House, Somerset, who wedded, in 1953, Mary Murray, daughter of Lieutenant-Colonel Joseph Murray Hoult, and had issue,
RICHARD DAWSON HOULT, his successor;
Charles Joseph Dill;
Drusilla Mary Cynthia.
Sir John was succeeded by his eldest son,

SIR RICHARD DAWSON HOULT BATES, 3rd Baronet (1956-), who married, in 2001, Harriet Domenique, daughter of Domenico Scaramella, and has issue,
Isobel Jessie Mary, born in 2002.
In 2003, the 3rd Baronet lived on the Isle of Man.

Photo credit: Rev McC Auld

Brandon Towers was a large Victorian villa near Connsbrook Avenue in east Belfast.

First published in May, 2010.


Anonymous said...

I'd rather have Brandon Towers, I think!


Anonymous said...

TIm, doing a sport of minor research, I understand Brandon Towers was two semi-detached houses, which makes sense looking at the sketch.


Rex Hunter said...

Bates was a guest at the official switch-on of electricity in Bangor, circa 1930 - the seafront being illuminated, with a huge crowd present. Speeches and toasts dragged on, but eventually the guests emerged from a nearby hotel, the Minister of Home Affairs reputedly climbing the steps to the platform on his hands and knees ( according to a town Councillor )

sambeckett said...

I'd like to read more about Dawson Bates the info about Bangor lighting is fascinating. Also when he became home affairs minister he interned hundreds of Catholics and Protestants. The latter, it's hard to get the names of them, though Republican nationalist prisoners, mostly held on the argenta ate

sambeckett said...

Any idea where I can find out more about Bstes. I went to PRONI but seems difficult to find the names of the Protestants he interned, along with nationalists and republican when he first came to power. Any ideas gratefully received #familymatter. I believe the portrait still hangs of him in Magherabouys hotel , a painting that caused a union conference attendee from Bangor ,back in the 1980s, to spontaneously exclaim , not at the climbing steps on hands and knees stage but possibly liquored, "that's the bastard who interned my father. What larks pip