Poppy

First World War in Headington and Marston, Oxford

Albert Edward OLIVER (1887–1917)

Albert Oliver

Albert Edward Oliver was born in Oxford in 1887. He was the son of the boat builder Edward Oliver (born in Newcastle upon Tyne in 1864) and Mary Ann Day (born in Childrey, Berkshire in 1864/5).

By the time of the 1881 census Albert's father Edward (18) had moved down to Oxford with his parents, and was living at Lake Street to the south of Oxford, which was then in Berkshire, with his parents: he and his father and brother John were all boat-builders. He was living at 38 Percy Street at the time of his marriage, and his future wife Mary Ann lived next door but one at No. 36.

Albert's parents Edward and Mary Ann were married at Cowley St John Church on 9 May 1886, and moved to St Aldate's near the River Thames after their wedding. Albert was their only child:

  • Albert Edward Oliver (born at St Aldate's Street, Oxford on 19 June 1887
    and baptised at St Aldate's Church on 7 August)

At the time of the 1891 census Albert (3) was living at 31 Thames Street in south Oxford with his father Edward (28), who was still a boat builder, and his mother Mary Ann (29).

By 1901 the family had moved to Bourne End in Berkshire, and Albert (13) was living there with his father Edward (38), who was described as a boatman, and his mother Mary Ann (40).

By the time of the 1911 census the family was back in Oxford, and Albert (23) was himself a boat builder, living at 2 Jubilee Terrace, Grandpont with his father Edward (47), described as a university boatman, and his mother Mary Ann (48).

By early 1915 Albert had volunteered to serve with the Oxfordshire & Buckinghamshire Light Infantry.

On 5 June 1915 at All Saints’ Church, Highfield, Albert Oliver married Martha Lammas (born in St Ebbe’s in 1887): see entry from parish register below:

Marriage of Albert Edward Oliver at All Saints’ Church

Martha had been living with her parents at 57 St Aldate’s at the time of the 1911 census, when her father was a general labourer; but he must have retired soon afterwards (which made him a “gentleman”, according to the above register) and moved with his wife up to 17 New High Street in All Saints’ parish. Albert’s address at the time of his marriage was given as Great Waltham, Essex, where the Oxfordshire & Buckinghamshire Light Infantry were then stationed.

It is likely that following their marriage in 1915 Martha remained in her parents’ house while Albert was away. They had one child:

  • Stanley Albert Oliver (born at New High Street, Headington in 1916 and baptised at All Saints’ Church on 21 September).

Albert was described as a boat builder at the time of the baptism, so it is possible that he left the army after his marriage; but he would have been conscripted back in the following year.

Poppy In the First World War Albert Edward Oliver served as a Private in the 5th Battalion of the Oxfordshire & Buckinghamshire Light Infantry (Service No. 32709). He was killed in action in France on 3 May 1917 at the age of 29.

He has no known grave, but is remembered on the Arras Memorial and the Roll of Honour of All Saints’ Church, Highfield, and also on a brass memorial plaque in St Matthew’s Church in south Oxford.


Postscript

All Saints' board

Albert’s widow
  • Mrs Martha Oliver continued to live with her parents at 17 New High Street, and remained there after their deaths until at least 1976.
Albert’s son
  • Stanley Albert Oliver (born 1916) married Doris N. Webster (born in 1915, reg. Headington District last quarter) in the Ploughley Registration District in the first quarter of 1944.
Albert’s father
  • Edward Oliver died in Oxford at the age of 61 in 1924.
Albert’s parents-in-law
  • William Lammas remained at 17 New High Street with his wife, and died there at the age of 82. He was buried in Headington Cemetery on 23 September 1926.
  • Mary Lammas died at 17 New High Street at the age of 87, and was buried in Headington Cemetery on 30 March 1935.

See also

Back to All Saints’ Church, Highfield roll of honour

Back to War Memorials page on Headington Community Website