Dictionary of Welsh Biography

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PHILLIPS , MORGAN HECTOR ( 1885 - 1953 ), headmaster ;

b. in the first half of 1885 , youngest son of David Phillips , rector of Radyr, Glam. He was the brother of J. Leoline Phillips , Dean of Monmouth , and D. Rupert Phillips , chairman of Kibbwr magistrates. He had a brilliant career at Christ College , Brecon , where he won a scholarship in the classics to Jesus College , Oxford . He won fame for himself and his school on the rugby field . At Oxford he gained first class in Moderations and graduated in 1911 . He was a schoolteacher at Fonhill ( East Grinstead ), Rossall University College School ( London ) and at Charterhouse . From 1915 until 1919 he was an officer in the Royal Fusiliers and R.A.S.C. In 1923 he was appointed Rector of the Royal College in Mauritius and Head of the island's Secondary Education Department . He worked there as a member of the Colonial Civil Service . In 1927 he represented the island at the Imperial Education Conference in London where he presented a paper on ‘ Teaching English in Schools ’. He was also an examiner for the Civil Service and for the Schools Examinations Board of the University of Cambridge . In Mauritius he was also prominent on the playing field , showing particular interest in cricket , hockey and football .

He was appointed (from among 45 applicants) headmaster of Ruthin School in 1930 . He took a great interest in rugby which had already been introduced into the school by his predecessor, Edwin William Lovegrove (see above) , and he managed to ensure that important rugby matches were played on the school field. Mystery remains concerning his resignation from the headship in 1935 , which was attributed to ill-health. He moved to London where he held an educational appointment and later became director of a number of private companies .

He m. Jessie Whayman , daughter of A.E.P. Rae and they had a son. He made his home at Chorleywood , Hertfordshire , but d. at Holloway Sanatorium , Virginia Water , 3 Mar. 1953 .


  • Clwyd Record Office, Ruthin;
  • The Ruthinian (Ruthin, 1883?-) , 1930-35 ;
  • Old Ruthinian Association;
  • Denbigh Free Press , 14 Mar. 1953 ;
  • information from Keith M. Thompson , the school historian.


Dr William Gareth Evans, (1942-2000), Aberystwyth

Published date: 2001