T Butt Miller Death


Friends of St Mary's Church, Cricklade, Wiltshire, U.K.


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The Wilts and Gloucestershire Standard 16 Jan 1915




By a sad coincidence, there comes almost simultaneously with the announcement of Earl Bathurst's contemplated resignation the announcement of the lamented death of Mr. T. Butt Miller, for many years the able and popular Master of the Cricklade side of the V.W.H. country, .between whom and Lord Bathurst there always subsisted close ties of personal regard and friendship that tended to make the relations between the two Hunts in the highest degree pleasant and harmonious at a time when, just after the division of the country, the situation required careful and delicate handling in the interests of the sport of the entire district.


The news of Mr. Miller's death, which took place at 47, Belgrave-square, London, on Wednesday night, after a long illness, was received at Cricklade, and indeed throughout the V.W.H. country, with profound regret. He had just completed his 55th year. After taking his degree he hunted with Lord Fitzhardinge's and the Duke of Beaufort's Hounds in his native county till, on the resignation of the veteran Mr. Robert Arkwright and Mr. Macan, he became Master of the Oakley Hounds. He showed fine sport in Bedfordshire for three seasons, 1885-1888, carrying the horn himself twice a week, or even more, for Tom Whitemore, the well-known Oakley huntsman, was, though far from the end of his career, prevented from carrying out his duties pretty frequently through accidents and other causes. While Mr. Butt Miller was with the Oakley, the old V.W.H. country was divided, and in 1888 the eastern or Cricklade side became vacant through the retirement of the late Mr. C. A. R. Hoare. Here was a chance for Mr. Miller to hunt a first rate country near his home, and he accepted the offer with alacrity. For twenty seasons he showed splendid sport in this Cricklade country, hunting both packs himself, but from 1908 to1910, when be finally retired, failing health compelled him to engage a professional. A fine judge of horse and hound, Mr. Miller did not confine his attention to foxhunting ; for many years he had a few horses in training at Newmarket, and, though he never won a race of any great importance, his was a familiar figure at the best meetings. Later in life he took up coursing and was a frequent nominator to the Waterloo Cup.


As just indicated, Mr. Miller came to Cricklade in 1888, and took up his residence at Brook House, some years later becoming the owner of the Manor House, he had it rebuilt and considerably enlarged, while he also became the owner of a considerable amount of land adjoining it, making it a compact estate. Although associated with many local matters, he was of course best known as the Master of the Hounds, a position he held up till 1910, when his health compelled him to retire, and he was succeeded by Mr. W. F. Fuller. He was keenly interested in the pack, and spared no pains or expense in improving it, his efforts being rewarded by successes at Peterborough and a succession of capital seasons' sport. He was a lover of good horses, and few kennels held a better lot of hunters. He also kept a herd of Jersey cattle and with these, as well as with his hunters, he was a frequent and successful exhibitor.


When in the full enjoyment of vigorous health, he was often to be seen out with Earl Bathurst's the Duke of Beaufort's, and the Old Berks Hunts in the course of the week, in addition to three days with his own pack, proving his keen love of hunting. Indeed, he was a real sportsman in every sense of the word, his tastes extending to many forms of sport. He was fond of athletics, and in later life he was, as already stated, well known in the coursing world, gaining some valuable stakes with his greyhounds, and it was announced only last week that he had returned his nomination for the Waterloo Cup which was awarded to another owner. Locally there was scarcely a movement that he was not in some way associated with, and the many appeals for help to praiseworthy objects found in him a willing and generous contributor. He was a J.P. for the Cricklade Division, and had been the representative of the Cricklade electoral district on the County Council, chairman of the Parish Council, president of the Cricket Club, chairman of the Market Committee, and was High Bailiff of the borough at the time of his death, as also chairman of the Trustees of the Waylands Estate, the two offices running jointly. He had also been chairman of the Horticultural Society, of which he was a staunch supporter. He was a school manager and a staunch churchman, and some years ago he presented a magnificent reading desk to St Mary's Church. At Christmas time he did not forget the old folks, who have no doubt, with many others, lost a real friend.


Mr. Thomas Butt Miller, born Dec. 2, 1859,  was the eldest son of the late George Miller, J.P., of Brentry, Gloucestershire (who died in 1881), by Mary, youngest daughter of the late Mr. Thomas Luce, of Malmesbury. He was educated at Eton and Trinity College, Cambridge, and was a Justice of the Peace for Gloucestershire and Wilts. He married, in 1897, Cicely Laura, youngest daughter of the late Mr. Dudley Robert Smith, J.P., of 47 Belgrave-square, who, with two sons and a daughter, survives him, and with whom the deepest sympathy is felt in their bereavement. Mr. Miller was for some years captain in the Prince of Wales's Own Royal Regiment of Wiltshire Yeomanry. His younger brother is Mr. Audley Miller, of Badminton, the well-known Wiltshire cricketer, who a year or two ago succeeded Colonel Frank Henry as honorary secretary to the Beaufort Hunt. His sisters are Mrs. Roper Tyler, of Tetbury ; Mrs. David Lindsay, of Willesley ; and Mrs. Herbert Peel, of Coates. Some twelve months ago Mr. Miller took Kingscote Park (the property of Mr. Nigel Kingscote) with the intention of residing there, but owing to the state of his health he only spent a very short time in his new home.


The funeral takes place on Monday next at Eisey, after a service at St. Sampson's Church, Cricklade, at 2.30.


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