Blue Plaque unveiling for Mary Wheatland
Published: 17 October 2022
The Bognor Regis Heritage and Arts Partnership were pleased to unveil the Blue Plaque for Mary Wheatland at the Pier on Thursday 13th October 2022.
The new Blue Plaque for the Town was the last in a series of ten new plaques which have celebrated the lives of people who have had a beneficial impact on the town. Recipients included the war time photographer Frank L'Alluette, the geologist Martin Venables, Sir Billy Butin, Sir Richard Hotham and King George V to name a few.
Mary Wheatland was a particularly deserving of a Blue Plaque for her life saving exploits saving over 30 people from drowning in the sea in the late 1890's and early 1900's. Such was her bravery that she was awarded a Testimonial on Vellum by the Royal Humane Society in 1879 followed by a Bronze medal in 1903.
The unveiling ceremony was introduced by the Mayor of Bognor Regis, Cllr John Barrett, followed by presentations by local historian Sylvia Endacott and John Wilson Assistant Secretary of the Royal Humane Society.
Many family members and descendants of Mary Wheatland attended the unveiling and were especially pleased when the original Vellum certificate to Mary Wheatland was displayed by Sylvia Endacott, to whom it had been entrusted for safe keeping by the grand daughter of Mary Wheatland.
It was wonderful to see crowds of local people gather to celebrating the life of one of great and bravest characters of Bognor Regis.