Arthur Thomas Banks

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Arthur Thomas Banks was born on 23 July 1905,[1] at 1 Prospect Place, Hythe, Hampshire, the seventh child of Henry Thomas and Susan Banks. About four years later the family moved to 4 Prospect Place (since renumbered 7),[2] which had one more bedroom.[3] (Arthur always maintained that his birth certificate was in error in giving his birthday as 22 July.[3]) He left school aged 14 and apprenticed as a boat builder at May, Harden & May in Hythe. As an member of a reserved profession he was not conscripted during the Second World War and instead worked for the British Power Boat Co., based in Hythe. When many of the shipyards closed following the war, he took a job as caretaker and woodwork teacher at Marchwood School.[3]

Arthur married Constance Frances Scheu on 16 March 1940 at St Gabriel's church, Bounds Green, Middlesex.[4] They presumably met while Constance was visiting her aunt Kate Parsons, who lived on Hythe High Street,[5] and whose daughter Lily had married Arthur's second cousin, Bob Banks, who had grown up in the house next door to Arthur.[6] After their marriage they lived in West Street, Hythe and had three children. In the 1960s, Constance's parents moved from London to a house in School Road, Hythe, and a few years later Arthur, Constance and their family moved in with them.[3] Constance died on 22 July 1978, aged 64,[3] and Arthur died on 22 December 2002, aged 97.[7]


  1. Banks, Arthur. Transcript of Banks family bible, circa 1995. Privately held by Richard Smith. (The bible was last known to be in the possession of Arthur's brother Harry.)
  2. The National Archives. 1911 census for Hythe, Hampshire, England (RG14/5912), sched 18. Henry Thomas Banks's household. Digital images on
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 Information provided to Richard Smith by Arthur Banks.
  4. Marriage certificate, for Arthur Thomas Banks & Constance Frances Scheu, married 16 Mar 1940, at St Gabriel's, Bounds Green, Middlesex. Privately held by Richard Smith.
  5. The National Archives : General Register Office. 1939 register for district EENQ, New Forest, Hampshire, England (RG101/2387F), p 6. Digital images on FindMyPast.
  6. The National Archives. 1911 census for Hythe, Hampshire, England (RG14/5912), sched 19. Alice Banks's household. Digital images on
  7. Southern Daily Echo. "Banks." Notice of death. 28 Dec 2002.
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