Bob Pender

Born: 17 December 1871 in Bury, Lancashire.

Died: 6 November 1939 in Rochford, Essex.

His real name was Robert Lomas.

He came from a family of entertainers, his parents and grandparents were fairground travellers. However it is safe to say that Bob was the most successful.

In an interview in The Era in 1910 he states that his stage career started when he was quite young, portraying as a pantomime monkey with his father, Richard Lomas.

As a youngster he travelled the country with his parents and a portable theatre.

Round about 1887 he and his brothers formed a group called the Lomas Brothers and performed a monkey act called Travels in Monkeyland.

Later on, date uncertain, he formed a troupe of stilt walkers.
He would go on to have several troupes performing at the same time, including Bob Pender’s Little Dandies which included his young daughter, Doris.

During their travels he uses both Pender and Lomas as his surname – at that time travel documents weren’t what they are today.

Sometime between 1923 and 1939 he retired and became the owner of a toyshop in Martley, Worcestershire. [1923 he is on returning from a tour in America, in the 1939 National Register he is Toy Shop owner.]

In his autobiography “Archie Leach” by Cary Grant, Grant suggests that Robert Lomas was a high-degree Mason. 

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