Titcomb, William Holt Yates

Artist, son of the first Anglican Bishop of Rangoon, was born in Cambridge on 22 February 1858. He lived in St Ives, Cornwall from 1887 to 1905 and in Bristol from 1909 to 1930 - both places of Methodist and artistic significance. Although drawn to Anglican ritualism, he was impressed by the simple but fervent piety he encountered at Fore Street PM Church in St. Ives. He exhibited a number of paintings on Methodist subjects at the Royal Academy, the best known being 'Primitive Methodists at Prayer' (at St Ives, 1889; now in the Dudley Art Gallery). His 'John Wesley preaching before the Mayor and Corporation of Bristol, 1788' (1918, now in the Mansion House, Bristol) contrasts with his painting of John Wesley preaching to the poor in the open air (said to be in Portland Square). Preliminary charcoal sketches for three of his paintings are in the St Ives Methodist Church. He died on 7 September 1930 in Bristol.

  • Times, 12 Sept 1930
  • Methodist Recorder, 4 July 1985; 3 April 2003
  • David Tovey, W.H.Y. Titcomb, Artist of Many Parts (Bushey, 1985)
  • David C.W. Tovey, W.H.Y. Titcomb … (parts 1 & 2, Tewkesbury, 2003)
  • David Leese, in WHS, East Midlands Branch Journal, July 2005


Entry written by: JAV
Category: Person
Comment on this entry