BACK, William Edward

1889 - 1985

William Edward Back, was born at Norwich, Norfolk on 24 September 1889, son of Philip Edward Back (14 January 1860-1 July 1930), chairman of Backs wine merchants of Norwich, and his wife Ellen Race née Shales (1 January 1860-1948), daughter of William Shales of Bradwell, Suffolk, who married at Great Yarmouth, Norfolk on 4 October 1881. In 1911, William was a 21-year-old apprentice engineer, living with his parents at Mancroft Towers, Oulton Broad, Suffolk. William sketched regularly in East Anglia with Alfred Munnings who gave him his first box of oil paints and, at the age of 18, had his first solo show in Bond Street, London but his family would not allow him to take-up art as a career, which he gave up at the age of 23. A member and exhibitor at the Norfolk & Norwich Art Circle 1907-1908 from Oulton Broad, Suffolk. William married at Kingston, Surrey in 1914, Dorothy Alice R. Trenaman (17 August 1890-1963) and their son was Robert Trenaman Back. As a frustrated artist turned aircraft designer, after the First World War he emigrated to Australia, but on inheriting the family estates in Norfolk and Suffolk, in 1931 the family returned to England. He must have resumed his artistic career as he exhibited at St John's Church Hall, Lowestoft in December 1960 'Fishing Boat, South of France' and 'Summer Squall'. William Edward Back died at Mancroft Towers, Oulton Broad, Lowestoft, Suffolk on 15 December 1985.