This was the eulogy spoken by John Bright at the funeral of his very dear friend and neighbour, Dr. William Burrowes.
It was my privilege to have been a friend and neighbour of Bill for over 50 years. Angela and I first met Bill and Nancy when we came to Corsham in 1959. He was then a partner in the group practice in Corsham known to us all as ―The Porch‖. Over those years I grew to know and respect him and have a personal reason to be grateful to him.
Bill was born and brought up in Northern Ireland, trained at Queen‘s University Belfast and then the Royal Victoria Hospital in Belfast, where he met his wife. Then followed service in the Royal Air Force principally in the Middle East.
His coming to practise medicine in Corsham was indeed fortuitous and almost a matter of chance. He was a Registrar at the Royal Victoria Hospital and through a family connection was asked to come to Corsham as a locum to en- able the senior partner Arthur Wheeler to take a holiday. He stayed for 3 weeks; another 3 weeks, then for several months when he was asked to join the Practice. Fortunately for Corsham he decided that the appeal of being a general practitioner in Wiltshire was greater than that of pursuing a career in hospital. He came here in 1949 and remained for the rest of his life.
He became senior partner in 1970 and retired from The Porch in 1985. But that was not the end of the career in medicine that he so loved as he continued for a number of years as locum in numerous practices in the surrounding area.
His interest in medicine was deep and lasting throughout his time in Corsham.
He was involved in many other fields of medicine :- he served as President of the Bath Clinical Society; as the Admiralty Surgeon and Agent at H.M.S. Royal Arthur;; Depot Medical Officer at RNSD Copenacre; Medical Officer to Bath Academy of Art; Clinical Assistant in Medicine and Neurology at the RUH Bath; Deputy Police Surgeon and he served on numerous other medical committees.
But that was not all for he was much involved in matters Corsham; he served as a Governor and Chairman of Governors of the Regis School and the County Primary School.; he was President of the Corsham Gar- deners Society; he was President of the Corsham Division of the St John Ambulance Brigade and was honoured to be a Brother of the Order of St. John.; President of the Corsham Branch of the Royal British Legion.; founder Chairman and chairman for 17 years of Corsham Link and subsequently Vice- President.; a Vice- President of Corsham Cricket Club.
He was deeply interested in Music and the Arts, in sport – rugby, cricket, tennis and of course golf.
Bill was primarily a man of medicine, who cared deeply for his patients and their welfare be they rich or poor and this showed throughout his life.
He was much loved and respected by his patients as has been shown by the many tributes paid following his death. He was in my view the last of an era. He was a man of quiet integrity. A man of honour. A truly good man, with a lively sense of humour, who will be much missed by us all. A fine tribute was paid to him by Dr Barry Wheeler now in Nova Scotia ( the son of Arthur Wheeler), ―Bill was probably the best I ever worked with and a great character‖
But above all he was a devoted and loving husband, father and grandfather to his family. I feel fortunate to have been his friend.
Editor‘s note: The Civic Society were represented at Dr. Burrowes‘ Memorial Service.