Sir Harry Burrard
Lieut-General Sir Harry Burrard (1755-1813) was one of the leading figures in the Peninsular War. He was born in Jersey, the son of George Burrard, a younger son of the leading family in Lymington, Hampshire, and Magdelaine Anne Durell, daughter of Jean Durell, Attorney-General.
Today Sir Harry is remembered for the land he gave in St Helier, allowing a road to be built from the west of town to the new market in Halkett Place, named Burrard Street in gratitude.
Sir Harry's mother was heiress of Longueville through her mother, Anne La Cloche, and he was born at Vinchelez de Haut and baptised in St Ouen's Church. He joined the Coldstream Guards as an Ensign at the age of 17 and within a year had reached the rank of Captain, before transferring to the 60th Regiment to serve in the American War.
He returned to England in 1780 having been elected MP for Lymington, which he represented for 26 years. He returned to America and served under Lord Cornwallis before returning to the Guards as Capatin in the Grenadiers in 186. Three years later he was promoted Lt-Colonel; Colonel in 1795 and Major General in 1798. He served in Belgium and Holland, commanded the 2nd Brigade and was promoted Lieut-General in 1805.
He was second in command in the raid on Copenhagen in 1807 and the following year he was in Portugal at the start of the Peninsular War. Sir Arthur Wellesley, a young General who would later become the Duke of Wellington, had been put in charge of British troops but reservations at the War Office and by the King led to the more experienced General Burrard being send as second in command to Sir Hew Dalrymple.
Burrard arrived first as Wellesley was in the middle of winning the Battle of Vimeiro, and prevented him pursuing the fleeing French army to Lisbon. His decision proved highly controversial, but a Court of Inquiry eventually found in his favour. However, Burrard was sidelined to the command of the Guards in London in 1810 and when his mother died two years later he inherited her fiefs and property. His gift of land in St Helier on 21 March 1812 prompted the announcement in the Gazette de Cesaree:
- "The public will learn with pleasure that Lieut-General Sir Harry Burrard is about to give a new proof of the lively interest he takes in the welfare of his native land by opening a road which will lead from New Street and Don Street and thence to the New Markets. This road will be called Burrard Street after its generous donor."
Burrard had five sons by his wife Hannah, only one, Charles, who survived him when he died in Calshot Castle in 1813.