Nigel John Davis Gresley was born 2 September 1817 in Datchet House, Datchet, Berkshire, England, United Kingdom to John Gresley (1788-1868) and Mary Smith (c1790-1861) and died 17 July 1879 Auckland, New Zealand of unspecified causes. He married Mary Ann Harriet Abbott (1827-1911) 25 April 1850 in Hobart, Tasmania, Australia.
THE LATE MR. NIGEL GRESLEY.—Early in the course of the morning yesterday the friends of Mr. Nigel Gresley, who was until very recently manager of the Union Bank in this city, were startled by the news of that gentleman's decease. The intelligence arrived by telegraph, and consequently the particulars of the last hours of Mr. Gresley's life are very meagre, nothing indeed beyond the announcement of his death having been received. It occurred in Auckland, New Zealand, whither he had proceeded in continued search of health, the close attention of his office life, uninterrupted by even a short holiday for the 32 years during which he held his responsible position, having at last necessitated a change of scene, when, accordingly in June last, Mr. Lees, the present manager, arrived to supply his place. Mr. Nigel John Davis Gresley was an Englishman by birth, having been born at his father's residence, Datchet House, Datchet, Buckinghamshire, on the 2nd day of September, 1817, his age being at the time of his death nearly 62 years. Soon after the year 1830 the family arrived in Tasmania, the father settling at Bruni Island, and an uncle, Dr. Ross, being connected with the Hobart Town Courier. On December 1st, 1833, the deceased was appointed to a clerkship in the Sub-Treasury at Launceston, under the Assistant Treasurer, Mr. George Stephen Davies. He continued in this office until January, 1839, when he joined the Tamar Bank, which had been established in Launceston in 1835. At a subsequent period, when the business of the Tamar Bank was transferred to the Launceston branch of the Union Bank, Mr. Gresley was amongst those of the old officers who were retained in the new institution.
Mr. Gresley had as a fellow worker at this time, Mr. John Mathison, who has since become so well known as the General Manager of the Bank of Victoria. Mr. Gresley was next transferred to Melbourne and again to Geelong, continuing attached to the Union Bank, and working at the offices at those places. At his own request, he was removed to Hobart Town, and was appointed manager in 1847, since which time he has been one of the lending authorities in the money market, and intimately concerned in everything affecting the business of the port. So closely indeed did he adhere to personally discharging all the responsibilities of his position, that it may be said truthfully, that for the term of his managerial career up to June last he never doffed harness for a single day. The effect of such continuous toil, added to a lengthened and painful attack of asthma, compelled him, in June last, to take a total change for a time, and relief having been provided, he left for Sydney, where he stayed for about a month, returning to his home apparently very much better in health, though still suffering from the asthma. Being then advised to seek further relief in New Zealand, at the Hot Springs of the North Island, he took a passage in the Loongana, and in that vessel arrived in Auckland on Sunday last. His end must have been at last very sudden, as he does not appear to have left Auckland at all for any further stage of his journey, and a telegram received on Tuesday evening stating that he was very ill was followed by another containing the fatal announcement, which reached his bereaved family yesterday morning. Mr. Gresley leaves a widow and eight children, seven daughters (three of whom are married) and one son, who is also attached to the clerical staff of the Union Bank. Mr. Gresley was throughout his career a staunch supporter of the Church of England, assisting in the Sunday Schools at St. John's Church, Launceston, and at Geelong.
He also acted for some years as a churchwarden of St. David's parish, Hobart Town. Both as a citizen and business man, and in private life, Mr. Gresley was deservedly respected, and his loss will be felt far beyond the limits of the bank itself, the proprietary of which lose an energetic and trustworthy agent, as his family and a large circle of acquaintances regret the absence of a loving friend.