SIR Winston Churchill’s heroics in the First World War featured in the first of a series of talks given at the Soldiers of Oxfordshire Museum.

Colonel John Bridgeman CBE spoke on Six Hundred Years of Oxfordshire Yeomanry at the museum in Park Street, Woodstock, in the grounds of the Oxfordshire Museum.

His wide-ranging talk dated back to the Battle of Agincourt, and ranged from Oxfordshire’s knights, archers and men-at-arms to Sir Winston’s Regiment of Yeomanry Cavalry, with its unique archive housed at the SOFO museum.

As well as a long career in the aluminium industry Colonel Bridgeman, who lives near Banbury with wife Lindy, has served with Yeomanry regiments, commanded a Field Workshop, served on the Defence Science Advisory Council and was for five years Chairman of the National Employers’ Liaison Committee for the Reserves of the Armed Forces, renaming it SABRE.

The father-of-three and grandfather-of-four has been a Deputy Lieutenant of Oxfordshire since 1989, is a former High Sheriff and Honorary Colonel of the Queen’s Own Oxfordshire Hussars, and a churchwarden of his local parish church.

Following the talk at the museum earlier this month Colonel Bridgeman said: “Sir Winston Churchill put on his Queen’s Own Oxfordshire Hussars uniform and went to war.

“The Soldiers of Oxfordshire Museum is a fantastic resource and the displays are being updated all the time.

“The Yeomanry, which took massive casualties in the First World War, is a powerful thread that runs through Oxfordshire’s history. Oxfordshire has always been able to rely on its people to serve in the Army, Navy and RAF.”

Colonel Bridgeman’s talk featured a series of photographs, including one of Sir Winston, who was born at Blenheim Palace, in 1906 with the German Emperor Kaiser Wilhelm, at Germany Army manoeuvres in Silesia.

Another iconic image of the famous war leader showed him 10 years later in 1916. He was then Major Winston Churchill on active service in France, before he took up his post as Officer Commanding 6th Battalion Royal Fusiliers.

For further information on forthcoming talks visit