Biographical notes on
Major Arthur Bowker, one of the Founding Lay Guardians,
kindly provided by The Retreat Association
After Winchester and University College School he served his apprenticeship as an engineer at Battersea, working in the same shop as John Burns. He was always deeply interested in geography and had, while still at school, won a gold medal from the Royal Geographical Society for map-making. He qualified both as a Mechanical and as a Civil Engineer specialising in Water Engineering; but in his earlier days he did a good deal of work on railways and in the nineties joined the Canadian Geological expedition to the Yukon and shared in the successful discovery of gold in the Klondike.
a Fellow of the Geological Society, of the Royal Geological Society, of
the Zoological Society as well as of the Royal Meteorological Society
and the British Rainfall Association. His travels took him twice across
Africa on foot, and he contributed to the records of the Royal Geographical
Society accounts of these journeys and of some of Asia as well. He habitually
kept meteorological records and his longest in England were in West Kent
at Seal, at West Malling, at Wrotham, and at Kingsdown near Sevenoaks.
Meteorology was his longest living scientific interest, and lasted for
years after he resigned professional work, in fact as long as he could
stand and read a gauge of any sort.