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MRS MARIA SOMES.

THE FOUNDER OF THE SOMES SCHOLAIiSHIPB.

News has been received in Christchurch of tho deaCli, on July 26th, of Mrs Maria Somes, of Annery Houso, Bideford, widow of Mr Joseph Somes. This lady was the founder ot tho Somos scholarships connected with Christ's College, Christchureh. Mrs Somes's husband died in 1845 when ho was Member of Parliament for Dartmouth, and also a governor of the New Zealand Company. X was from his ship the Tory, that Queen Victoria's sovereignty over tho islands was proclaimed. The deceased lady, who had attainod the great .ago of 05. went to live in the Bldeford district about 35 years ago, residing first at Chircombe, and then at Annery, a beautifully situated and historic mansion between Bidoford and Torringtoi;. Tho deceased lady was probably ono of the most ficnerous supporters of the Evangelic Church movement in the county. She was also a generous supporter of many local institutions. Annery House is an liistoric mansion, and is eaid to have been tho birthplace of Bishop Stapleton, Lord High Treasurer to Edward 11., and of Lord Chief Justice Hankford, who is generally credited with being tho judgo who committed tho' wild Prince Hal to prison. The Lord Chief Justice is eaid to have mot his death in 1422 in tho woods, shot by his gamekeeper, whom ho had strictly enjoined to shoot anyone he met in tbo Doer Park who did not reply when accosted. Readers of "Westward EoT will remember ' tho duel between Will Carey and Don Guzman. The tree under which it was supposed to havo been fought is still pointed out in tho grounds of Annery House, then belonging to the St. Legors. Mrs Somes's connection' with Christ's College- dates back many years, and Collegians have good reason to remember her generosity. Her husband was tho owner of ships which traded to Lyttelton, and it is thought that in this way her interest in tho now Canterbury settlement was first awakened. After tho death of her husband, she expressed her desire to provide a Somes scholarship in his memory, and to lay asido sufficient property to maintain it. Tho result was that her representatives, Mr Godley and Mr Guise Brittan, secured rural section No. 1 at Lyttelton, adjoining the town, and consisting of 50 acres, and also quarteracro section No. 1. The land has, of course, increased in value sinoe it was given, and at tho present time, there- aro fifteen or sixteen Somee scholarships held at Christ's College.

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MRS MARIA SOMES. Press, Volume LXVII, Issue 14161, 29 September 1911

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