HC Deb 14 August 1894 vol 28 cc997-8
MR. HOPWOOD (Lancashire, S. E., Middleton)

I beg to ask the Parliamentary Secretary to the Local Government Board whether he is aware that William Windridge, who died of smallpox in the City Hospital, Coventry, on the 22nd June last, was certified by the medical officer, Dr. Fenton, to have died unvaccinated, described by the doctor to be an anti-vaccinationist, who refused the protection afforded by vaccination, and died a martyr to his prejudices; whether the Department has since received a statement, signed by the mother, widow, and brother of the deceased, that he had been vaccinated and was an advocate of vaccination; and whether the Department will inquire into the matter, with a view of preventing the above from appearing in the Registrar General's statistics as an unvaccinated case?


The statements on the question are substantially correct, but inquiry has since been made of Dr. Fenton, and he states that Windridge, on more than one occasion, stated to him that he did not think that he had been vaccinated. He states further that he failed to discover the slightest mark of cicatrix or other evidence left by the operation. Windridge had not only refused to be vaccinated, but had made statements to Dr. Fenton with regard to vaccination which satisfied him that he was opposed to vaccination. Dr. Fenton subsequently made inquiry of the mother of the deceased, but could not obtain any satisfactory information as to his having been vaccinated. In face of these contradictory statements I can only say that if my hon. Friend will obtain information for me as to the date and place of the vaccination of the deceased, I will make further inquiry.