Frank Ereaut

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Official portrait in the Royal Court
Sir Frank escorts the Duchess of Kent on an official visit to the island

Sir Frank Ereaut, Bailiff of Jersey from 1975 to 1985, was born in London, the son of Herbert Parker Ereaut (who predeceased him, having been killed in active service in 1918) and May Julia Cobbold. He was the grandson of James Ereaut, a Constable of St Saviour.

He was educated at Victoria College Prep School in Jersey, Tormore Preparatory School in Deal and Cranleigh School. He was a Kitchener Scholar at Exeter College, Oxford. During the Second World War, he served in the Royal Army Service Corps, attaining the rank of Captain.

Legal career

He was called to the English and Jersey Bars in 1947. He was appointed Solicitor-General of Jersey in 1958, serving in that position for three years before becoming Attorney-General when Sir Robert Le Masurier was appointed Lieut-Bailiff during the illness of Deputy Bailiff Cecil Stanley Harrison.

The interim appointent of Francis de Lisle Bois as Deputy Bailiff on the death of Bailiff Harrison after only a few weeks in office meant that Frank Ereaut remained as Attorney-General until 1969, when he became Deputy Bailiff, succeeding Sir Robert Le Masurier as Bailiff in 1975.

One of the more controversial aspects of his tenure of office related to the Bailiff's role in approving and censuring public entertainment. He refused to allow the Monty Python film Life of Brian to be shown in the island, insisting that it was only watched by adults, despite it having been rated suitable for those aged 14 or over by the British Board of Film Censorship. It would not be shown in Jersey until 2001, despite having been shown on several occasions prior on Channel 4 - a British TV network available in Jersey.

Personal life

Sir Frank married Kay Fitzgibbon from County Cork. They had one daughter.

Personal view

Jerripedia editor Mike Bisson got to know Sir Frank very well during his years as a journalist. He writes:

"Frank Ereaut was first and formost a lawyer, and also a very likeable man. There was nothing remotely pompous about him and, although he performed the role of 'chief citizen' extremely well, he was much happier sitting in the Royal Court than in the States Chamber, or escorting visiting dignitaries. He had a very similar, essentially low-key approach to his role as did his predecessor, Sir Robert Le Masurier, in stark contrast to Sir Alexander (later Lord) Coutanche, Jersey's wartime Bailiff, and Sir Peter Crill, who followed Frank Ereaut as Bailiff in 1986.
"Although Sir Frank and I got on extremely well, he was never particularly comfortable dealing with the Press, and occasionally called on me to advise him when he had no option but to engage with the English media. Although he did not have strong views about the Bailiff's role combining that of head of the island's judiciary, speaker of its parliament and 'chief citizen' he was always conscious that at any time he might be called on to preside in Court when any islander might be involved in a criminal case or serious civil action, and therefore he should be seen to be as detached as possible from politics - with a small or capital P."




Family tree

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Ereaut family tree

Sir Frank and Lady Ereaut visit a children's playground in the 1970s
Bailiffs of Jersey
Predecessor Successor
Sir Robert Le Masurier
1962-1975
Sir Frank Ereaut
1975-1985
Sir Peter Crill
1986-1995
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