William Burgess, Inventor (1834-1889)
1879 Littlebury’s Directory:
William Burgess, manufacturer of pheasant and poultry food, inventor of the springless Eclipse alarm gun, farmer, Berry Lodge.
1884, 5 April, Worcestershire Chronicle:
Local Patents. William Burgess, Berry Lodge, Hanley Castle, for “a humane fish gaff and net combined, for catching and landing salmon and other fish when hooked on the line, also to apply to windows to catch burglars and thieves”, dated 24 March 1884.
6 September, Worcestershire Chronicle:
Local Patents. William Burgess, Berry Lodge, Hanley Castle, for “an alarm gun for military outpost duty, applicable as a property protector and poacher detector”, dated 12 August 1884.
1885, 2 May, Worcester Journal:
New Patents. William Burgess of Hanley Castle [BerryLodge], was granted a patent for an invention of catching and killing vermin in a humane way.
1889, 2 November, Worcester Journal:
"Death of William Burgess of Berry Lodge. Mr Burgess had been confined to his bed for about eight weeks suffering from dropsy and an enlarged heart. He was the founder of the Midland Counties Fish Culture Establishment. A former gamekeeper at Madresfield Court, he gave up that position about 30 years ago and devoted himself to the manufacture of food for pheasants. He carried on pheasant breeding on a large scale for many years and at the time of his death there were nearly 10,000 pheasants on his farm. The bent of his mind lay in the direction of invention and he held a number of patents for alarm guns, traps, etc. More recently he had paid much attention to the cultivation and acclimatisation of fish. His piscicultural establishment has excited wide interest and has been inspected by members of the Royal Family and ex-Empress Eugenie of France. He held the opinion that with due attention to cultivation, the price of fish could be brought down by half. The cortege left Berry Lodge at one o’clock and reached St Gabriel’s at 2.30. The coffin was of oak with brass mounting and bore the inscription “William Burgess, died October 27th 1889, aged 55”.