Thomas Octavius Walker



Thomas Octavius Walker


Thomas Octavius Walker


Service history for Thomas Walker 135644
19 images ref 001 to 019
Photo of Thomas in uniform image 020
Photo of Thomas after the war image 021


Thomas Octavius Walker is my husband’s maternal grandfather.

Thomas Octavius Walker was born in Brighton 23/06/1894 the eldest son of Thomas and Elizabeth (nee Frost) Walker. Thomas married Eleanor Louisa Michie at The Register Office, Wandsworth on 23rd October 1915, he was 21 and working as a Motor Fitter, he also worked as a chauffeur.

On 1st November 1915 Thomas enlisted with Army Service Corps MT, regimental number 135644 and in 1917 he was a motor mechanic in the Anti Aircraft Brigade. During his service Thomas was a motor mechanic and a driver and a family story is that during the war he drove the Prince of Wales; they also shared the same birthday. Thomas was demobbed June 1919.

After the war Thomas was a driver and a mechanic looking after a fleet of charabancs (coaches) in Mitcham, Surrey, then turned to lorry driving as his health deteriorated. He had driven through a village that had been gassed during the war which left him with damaged lungs. He had to be helped in and out of the cab with refreshments brought out to him in the cab when he made his stops.

His eldest daughter Queenie recalled as children they used to find it funny that their Dad made funny bubbly noises when he breathed, little realising his poor health. Thomas died on 1st March 1928 age 34, at 46 Ouseley Road, Balham (St James’ Hospital). Cause of death: a) Cardiac failure b) Asthma & Bronchitis.

Thomas and Eleanor had 7 children, 3 boys and 4 girls. Their first born Thomas, died aged 4 months in February 1917 and their 2nd son Lesley Ernest Hubert Walker was killed in action in Italy during WWII and he is buried at The Sangro River War Cemetery.

Thomas designed a tandem bicycle, a Chater Lea, but the family do not know if this was pre or post war. The Chater Lea tandems were sturdy machines mainly used for club riding and touring.






Julie Burke

Collection Day

Williton Pavilion 6th April 2019

This item was submitted on July 5, 2019