Frederick Wigan Jones

Frederick Wigan Jones © IWM (HU 116473)

Born 12 February 1892

Died 21 December 1916

Studied at the RCA:  October 1913 – July 1914

Frederick, the only son of a bank cashier, came from Birmingham. He arrived at the College having worked as an assistant art teacher and was considered ‘earnest and diligent’ by his tutors.

In August 1914, a few days after Britain declared war on Germany, he wrote to the College to ask whether it would be open in the autumn and the Registrar, Cyril D. Fitzroy, wrote back assuring him that it would. Nonetheless, Frederick enlisted on 1 September.

By late March 1915 Frederick was serving in France as a private. Later in the year he was hoping for a commission, his father writing to the Registrar about ‘Fred’s’ nomination requiring a character recommendation from the Principal. A local vicar, who had known Frederick for the necessary four-year period, provided this instead. Frederick became a lieutenant in the 8th Battalion (Territorial Forces) of the Royal Warwickshire Regiment in November 1915.

Just over a year later, returning after a spell of home leave – and a week after the end of the Battle of the Somme – he suffered serious shrapnel wounds to his neck and thigh on 25 November. Evacuated back to Britain for specialist treatment at the Empire Hospital in Vincent Square (Westminster), he died on 21 December.

He was buried with semi-military honours at Yardley Cemetery, Birmingham.

Student file – Royal College of Art Archive
Student file, letter from the College – Royal College of Art Archive
Frederick Wigan Jones © IWM (HU 116473)