William Arthur a`BeckettPrint Page Print this page


Photographs supplied by Sandra Brown

A stained glass window commemorates William Arthur Callander a`Beckett, a barrister.

He was born on 7 July 1833 at Kensington, London, and went with his family to Sydney in May 1837 and to Port Phillip in February 1846. He attended schools in Sydney and Melbourne and at 18 began reading law under his father's direction. In January 1852 he was appointed associate to his father, then chief justice. In February 1853 he left with his family for England. There he studied applied sciences at King's College, London. He returned to Melbourne in December 1854 and was reappointed associate to his father. His brother Edward FitzHayley succeeded to the associateship in September 1855.  

In February 1855 à Beckett was appointed second lieutenant in the Melbourne Volunteer Rifle Corps.   His political career began in January 1868 when as a Constitutionalist candidate for Mornington.   Though defeated, he polled well and in September was elected to the Legislative Council for the Southern Province.

As a parliamentarian he showed great diligence and spoke on every subject under discussion. He unsuccessfully sought representation for St Kilda in the elections of May 1877.

à Beckett was appointed a territorial magistrate in 1861, magistrate for Melbourne General Sessions in 1869, and called to the Victorian Bar in September 1875. He went to London in 1886 and next year was admitted to the Inner Temple. He returned to Melbourne in 1892 and died in a private hospital at St Kilda on 16 December 1901.

He was an original member and governor of the Old Colonists' Association in 1869, and a member of the Eclectic Association of Melbourne and of the Yorick Club, to which he presented some engravings.  He took a keen interest in horse-racing and studied heraldry. He had great pride in his ancestry, and by royal licence of 18 April 1888 he and his issue were authorized to use the surname and to bear the arms of à Beckett with proper distinctions.


Address:16 A`Beckett Road, Church of St Thomas, Bunyip, 3815
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -38.096735
Long: 145.723447
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
View Google Map


Monument Type:Window
Monument Theme:People


Front Inscription

To the glory of God and in loving memory of William Arthur Callander a`Beckett.

Born July 7th 1833  Died December 16th 1901

Source: MA,ADB
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
Proudly sponsored by UBC Web Design