Mr Mike Cross
Mike is proud of his military heritage despite only pushing a pen during his working life. In WW2 father was in the RAF Regiment whilst mother was a WRAF. One grandfather spent his career in the Royal Navy, having joined aged 16, and the other served with the Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry in the Great War. Grandmother's brother began the Great War in the Queen's Own Oxfordshire Hussars and that is where his interests lie. Always gathering information about Oxfordshire Yeomen from their formation in the late 18th century right through to the modern day but focussing his main efforts on the Great War. He also helps with both the management of our archives and our extensive database of men who have served with the County Regiments over the years.
John Sheldon is an Honours graduate of the University of Manchester, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, and a Trustee of the Bucks Military Museum Trust. He lives in Stewkley, Buckinghamshire, and retired in 2009 as CEO of a division of the John Lewis Partnership. In retirement he has written two books about the Stewkley men who fell in the Great War and in WWII, the research for which was aided by volunteers at SOFO, leading him to become involved as a volunteer himself, and to lead the research and writing for the Prisoners of War gallery in the permanent exhibition at SOFO. He is currently working as a volunteer with the SOFO Museum soldier enquiry service.
Medals, medals, everywhere! When I joined SOFO as a volunteer, I was given a role that every medal collector would dream about – handling and putting together the medal display. Ever since the age of 8 when I was given my first medal by my grandmother, medals have played a big part in my life. I am eligible for my 25 year long service badge with the orders and Medal Research Society this coming autumn but I have been collecting and gaining a wealth of medal related information , both British and Foreign, for nearly 46 years and now have a real opportunity to put some of this knowledge to use within the museum . It is always a pleasure coming to Woodstock and working with the friendly and welcoming group of likeminded volunteers and full time staff, and just having the opportunity to hold and see some of the Orders and medals won by men of famous Oxfordshire regiments, is not only a joy, but a true privilege, and despite being born and living in Buckinghamshire, I am glad my county also played it’s part in making local history and adding colour to this wonderful museum.
Library & Archive Volunteer
Library & Archive Volunteer
I joined SOFO at the end of April as the new Library and Archive volunteer. I am responsible for keeping the library in good order and accessioning new titles into the collection as well as assisting the research volunteers in updating the soldiers’ records with the results of their research. I combine my role at SOFO with my jobs as a Learning Leader at Cogges Manor and Tour Guide at Blenheim Palace. I am a relative newcomer to Oxfordshire, having been posted to RAF Brize Norton with my husband and young daughter in 2016, so this is a great way for me to combine my love of history and learn more about the military connections in the County. It is the personal stories of individuals that has always interested me most so I am looking forward to discovering more about the lives of those people who have served with the county regiments.