Sir William Hillary, 1771-1847

Cast of Sir William Hillary

Descended from a Yorkshire Quaker family, who for a mixture of reasons, mostly financial but also an irregular matrimonial arrangement, came to live in Douglas in 1808. Put forward a key proposal for a National Lifeboat Institution that eventually led to today's RNLI.

Lived for some time at Fort-Anne.


Only son Augustus-William Hillary, married Susan-Curwen, eldest daughter of John Christian .

Lasting memorial is the Tower of Refuge in Douglas Harbour.

Oh, Hillary ! thy philanthropic heart
In love hath raised this magic piece of art;
The bay’s chief ornament, with use combined.
It stands the beacon, too, of thy great mind! [
Manx Soc #21 p267]


Online Pages:

Sir William Hillary: An Account of his Writings Manx Quarterly #14 pp127/131 Sept 1914

Memorial to Sir William Hillary Manx Quarterly #5 p501 1908

Offline References

 R.C.Kelly & G.N.Kniveton Sir William Hillary and the Isle of Man Lifeboat Stations Douglas: Manx Experience nd [1994] (1-873120-16-8)
Janet Gleeson The Lifeboat Baronet Launching the RNLI Brinscombe Prt The History Press 2014( ISBN 978-0-7524-9001-4)




Any comments, errors or omissions gratefully received The Editor
© F.Coakley , 2002