John William Urquhart BYRCH (1882-1927)
John William Urquhart Byrch (1882-1927), known as Jack, was the son of a prominent Evesham solicitor who was friendly with the Sladden family. When the Byrch family emigrated to New Zealand at the beginning of the 20th century, the two families kept in contact. May Sladden stayed for a few days with the Byrches on a visit to New Zealand in 1906 and wrote about it in her diary.
Jack Byrch was born at Evesham on 17th December 1882, the fourth of ten children of Albert William Byrch, a solicitor, and his wife, Constance (née Bremmer). He grew up at The Elms, Bengeworth, and was a pupil at Christ College, Brecon, from March 1896 to December 1897. The 1901 census reveals that he was working as an Articled Clerk.
In 1902, Jack emigrated with his family to the South Island of New Zealand. They lived firstly at a sheep station at Mount Brown near Amberley, which was where May visited them in February 1906. Soon after the Byrches moved to a sheep station at Motunau near Canterbury.
Jack was seriously ill for about a year in 1915-1916. Later in 1916 he married Winifred Mary Foster.
Jack died on 20th November 1927, aged 44, and was buried at Glenmark Cemetery, Canterbury, South Island. His widow died 35 years later and was buried beside him.