The WATTS Family: brothers James (‘Jim’) Watts, John Watts, and Frank Edwin Watts
The sons of Edwin Watts (1834-1907) and Ann Watts (née Gobey) (1832-1903).The couple were married on 24 August 1854 at Upton St. Leonards and had eight children –all except one lived until adulthood; three of their four sons would play for Gloucester. Their father, Edwin, worked for forty years at Walham Brick Works and for a further fourteen years he was the landlord of the Jolly Waterman Inn; both the brick works and the Jolly Waterman Inn were run at some time by Maria Tandy and her nephew Frank Tandy (29 games for the Gloucester First XV 1877 to 1879). The brick works and the Jolly Waterman Inn would also provide employment for two of his sons James (‘Jim’) Watts and John Watts. When Edwin died in 1907 the perennial problem of flooding in Gloucester resulted in his coffin having to be transported by boat from his home for a mile before being placed in the hearse; the same situation had arisen when their mother, Ann, had died in 1903.
James (‘Jim’) Watts was born at Sandhurst near Gloucester in 1864, the brother of John Watts and Frank Edwin Watts. In 1885 at St Michael’s Church he married Caroline Maude Badham – Jim’ s occupation was listed as a Brick Maker which meant that he had followed his father into the Walham Brick Works; his brother John Watts also worked there. The couple had two children and by 1901 Jim and his family were living with his brother John and his family at the Jolly Waterman Inn where their father, Edwin, was the Landlord; Jim still continued to earn his living at the nearby brick works. Jim’s first wife, Caroline died on 15 June 1903 aged 39 years. Two years later on 19 August 1905 at St Catharine’s Church, he married Emma Jane Smith. Jim remained at the bricks works and eventually he was employed as the Foreman there, taking over the position from his father after he died. Jim, a half-back and three-quarter, played 5 games for the Gloucester First XV between 1878 and 1880 and played 7 games for the Gloucester Second XV in the 1888-1889 season. After retiring he was a regular spectator at Kingsholm. Jim died at Gloucester on 23 July 1923 after a long illness, aged 59 years. His wife, Emma, died on 8 June 1948 aged 86 years.
John Watts was born in Sandhurst, Gloucester in June 1867, the brother of James (‘Jim’) Watts and Frank Edwin Watts. On 2 May 1898 he married Amy Crockford at St Mary de Lode Church. He stated that his occupation was Brick Maker which meant that he followed his father into the Walham Brick Works; his brother James (‘Jim’) Watts also worked there. By 1901 he was also employed as the Licensee of the Jolly Waterman Inn, taking over from his father who was now the Foreman at the Walham Brick Works. The couple had three children, one of whom died in infancy. John, a versatile player in the forwards and the backs, played 16 games for the Gloucester First XV between 1888 and 1893, scoring 1 try but amassing 19 points when his goal kicking is included. He also played at least 48 games for the Gloucester Second XV between 1887 and 1894, scoring 14 tries and amassing 139 points. John died in Gloucester on 5 December 1936 aged 69 years. His wife, Amy, died on 8 September 1951 aged 78 years.
Frank Edwin Watts was born in Gloucester on 29 March 1873, the brother of James (‘Jim’) Watts and John Watts. Although he lived in the Jolly Waterman Inn, unlike his father and two brothers he was neither employed at the pub or at the brick works and earned his living as a Printer for the Citizen newspaper and then a Linotype Operator, working his way up to a Newspaper Overseer; he was presented with a cheque and a gold watch when he retired from the Citizen in 1942 after 55 years of service. On 24 October 1896 he married Amy Albina Gibbins at St Marks Church and the couple had two children. Frank, a half-back and three-quarter, played 27 games for the Gloucester First XV between 1893 and 1895, scoring 2 tries and with his goal kicking amassed 71 points. He also played 11 games for the Gloucester Second XV between 1892 and 1895. Besides rugby his other sporting passion was bowls and he was a member of the Gloucester and Spa Bowling Clubs. Frank died in Gloucester on 23 April 1943 aged 70 years. His wife Amy died on 21 November 1952 aged 80 years.