Oakford, Samuel Collier
Son of the late Ruben J Oakford and Betsy Kendrick Adams (later the wife of Samuel John Goad Adams), of “torfrey”, King Street, Brixham, Devon.
Oakford was born on 08/12/1886, and taught at the School from 1910-1919. He served as a Sergeant in the Army, with the Royal Field Artillery, H.Q. 221st Bde.. Oakford sadly lost his life on 25/03/1919, as a result of the War.
Oakford is buried in Basra War Cemetery, Iraq, grave reference II. A. 2.
Service in India (BGS Chronicles)
Samuel Collier Oakford was a teacher at Bristol Grammar School from 1910 to 1919, and throughout his time on service in India during the War, he kept up a steady correspondence with the School. His letters provide a stark contrast to many of the other stories of active service.
"We have had plenty of cricket, and our thanks are due to Mr Oakford for the trouble and time he has expended on coaching members during the dinner-hour. A few boys seems to prefer speeding their half-holidays doing nothing in particular to taking part in healthy, enjoyable games with their schoolfellows on the School field." – July 1913
"Mr. Oakford joined the Devon R.F.A. at the very beginning, has been promoted to Bombardier, and is now in India." - December 1914
"Mr. Oakford is leading a luxurious life in barracks at Dinapore in India." - April 1915
"Constant news comes from Mr. Oakford from Dinapore in India, where the temperature has not been getting any less during recent months. Mr. Oakford reports 104 degrees in the shade, and boiling point in the sun, in spite of which he has been playing hockey. As a reulst he has had some days in hospital with a poisoned leg, from which let us hope that he has long recovered." - July 1915
"Mr. Oakford's chief adventure has been the despatching of a whip-snake, over 4 ft. in length, which ocupied his bedroom in his absence: these are the details which add zest to life in Dinapore." - December 1915
"Mr. Oakford, when last heard from, was taking a Swedish Drill Course in a beautiful resort of the Himalayas, so that he is continuing with success to see the greater part of India at the national charge." - July 1916
"Mr. Oakford is still at Lucknow, and finds it impossible to escape from his occupation of 'clerking'." - July 1917
"Our Indian exiles are on the move. Mr Oakford has at last a chance of seeing active service, possible in Mesopotamia, with a brigade of the R.F.A." - December 1917
"All who knew him will have heard with great regret of the death of Mr S.C. Oakford who from May, 1910, to July, 1914, was a master in the Preparatory School. He was admirably fitted to deal with young boys, and both in and out of School was much liked by them. Much of the success of the games was due to his efforts, as he devoted considerable time and trouble to coaching after School hours, and whilst he was with us the rivalry between the two Houses was unusually keen.
When war was declared he enlisted in the 4th Devon R.F.A., and sailed for India on October 3rd, 1914. His last visit to the School was on October 2nd, when he said goodbye and left with the good wishes of all with whom he had associated. Two years ago he went to Mesopotamia, and was promoted to the rank of Sergeant. He was expected to resume his duties here in September next, but died at Basra shortly before he was due to sail for England." H.W.G. - July 1919