Frances Ann Wood

Frances Ann Wood (born 19 March 1773, died 21 May 1856) was the sister of Sir Gabriel Wood.  He had requested that some of his estate be used to build a home for old and sick mariners in his native town of Greenock.  This was not a legally binding memorandum but both his sister and his wife, Dame Louisa, carried out his wishes and set up an organising committee.  An architect was engaged, Robert MacIntosh of Exeter (a friend of the family), the purchase of a seven acre site in the west end of Greenock came about and the foundation stone was laid on 17th October 1850.  The home opened in 1854.  It cost £8,500.  It was named in honour of her brother, The Sir Gabriel Wood Mariners’ Asylum.

Frances remained very active in the management committee until her death and left much of her estate for the work of the home.  The portraits of her are in the home itself as is the memorial stone.

She is buried in the Inverkip Street Cemetery along with her parents.

Frances Ann Wood

Frances Ann Wood

Memorial plaque in Mariners’ Home


She was also a great benefactor to many local charities.  She donated the clock for the newly built steeple of the West Kirk, Nelson Street (now called Westburn Church).  When she donated the money she made had  2 conditions  – the clock  must be of the best quality – and the work must be carried out quickly as she was an old lady and she wanted to see the work completed before she died. The work was completed a few days before she died!

The steeple clock donated by Miss Wood to the church

Sir Gabriel Wood Mariners’ Asylum (now “Home”) opened on 17 October 1854

Inverkip Street Cemetery