Baynes, Admiral Sir Robert Lambert KCB (1796-1869)

Admiral Sir Robert Baynes lived at Ravenscroft, 357 Grange Road, 1868-69.  He was born in 1796, youngest son of Thomas Baynes, commander in the Royal Navy, in Eton Buckinghamshire.  He entered the Royal Navy in 1810 and had a distinguished career being promoted to lieutenant in 1818.  He served at the battle of Narino in 1827 during the Greek War of Independence.  He was promoted to captain in 1828 and commanded vessels HMS Andromanch and HMS Bellerophon.  He served as one of the senior officers in the Baltic during the Crimean War and 1857 was made Commander-in-Chief, Pacific Station.  (Gough, 1976).

H.M.S. Bellerophon….. in a Gale. 1825.

In 1860 he was made a Knight Commander of the Bath as a result of his astute handling of friction during the North American gold rush between the British Hudson’s Bay Company and settlers on San Juan Island.  On his retirement in 1868 he was awarded a “good service pension” of £300 a year. (Vacant Good service Pension, 1868).

He married Frances Denman, daughter of Thomas Denman, Lord Chief Justice of England in 1846.  They had two sons, Lambert Denman in 1847 who sadly died before his first birthday and Henry Compton Anderson, who went on to become Rear Admiral.   They moved to Ravenscroft in 1868 but Sir Robert died there shortly afterwards in September 1869.  He was buried in West Norwood cemetery 11 September 1869.  Unfortunately the death of Sir Robert meant that his pension ceased and his widow, lady Baynes, was left penniless.  Sadly the following request for financial support appeared in 1871.

The appeal must have been successful to some extent as Frances Lady Baynes survived another 19 years and died in Alton, Hampshire in 1890.