The interesting South Africa Boer War and related prize medals group awarded to the Reverend F.W. Bennitt, Chaplain to the Forces during the Boer War in 1901 to 1902 whilst on operations in the Cape Colony, during November 1930 he officiated during the Royal Antediluvian Ancient Order of Buffaloes Memorial Service held at Cardington Cemetery in the wake of the R101 airship disaster of 4th October 1930, when some 5000 members of the Royal Antediluvian Ancient Order of Buffaloes attended.
Queens South Africa Medal, two clasps: Cape Colony, South Africa 1902; (REV: F.W. BENNITT,) Birmingham Grammar School Prize Medal in Silver, reverse engraved: ‘F.W. BENNITT 1891’, together with another, reverse engraved: ‘F.W. BENNITT 1892’. Royal Antediluvian Ancient Order of Buffaloes Swan Lodge No.6397 Certification Jewel, silver gilt and enamels, reverse engraved: ‘Presented to Bro. The Rev. Frederick Bennitt By the Swan Lodge No.6397 Certified on the 21 June 1933’. This lacking ribbon.
Some original newspaper cuttings relating to the R101 airship disaster and the subsequent Royal Antediluvian Ancient Order of Buffaloes Memorial Service which Bennitt officiated at, one showing a picture of Bennitt during the ceremony.
Frederick Wilmot Bennitt was born on 3rd October 1873 in Harborne, King’s Norton, Staffordshire, the son of Samuel Bennitt, a coal master, and his wife, Harriet Elizabeth Bennitt, formerly Robinson. Educated at Birmingham Grammar School, where he gained prize medals in 1891 and 1892, he went on to study theology at Pembroke College, Cambridge, and gained a 2nd Class Degree in 1895, and subsequently an MA in 1899. Having opted for the church, Bennitt was appointed a Deacon in 1896 and then admitted to the Priesthood in 1897, being appointed the Curate of St Margaret’s in Plumstead from 1896 to 1898, and then appointed to Rugby School from 1898 to 1901 and again from 1902 to 1903. Bennitt was appointed an Acting Chaplain to the Forces in South Africa during the Boer War in 1901 to 1902, and was present on operations in the Cape Colony. On his return, he was appointed as Curate to Hagborne in Staffordshire in 1903 to 1905, and then to Buxton in Derbyshire in 1905 to 1906, and Rector of Bletchley in 1906 to 1934. During the Great War he briefly served at home in the Royal Army Medical Corps from 1918 to 1919. It was whilst he was serving at Bletchley in November 1930 that Bennitt had the sad task of officiating during the Royal Antediluvian Ancient Order of Buffaloes Memorial Service held at Cardington Cemetery in the wake of the R101 disaster of 4th October 1930, when some 5000 members of the Royal Antediluvian Ancient Order of Buffaloes attended. Bennitt was appointed the Vicar of East Peckham from 1934 to 1942, and Cannon of Sunninghill from 1943 to 1945, and by 1947 was residing at Sanderstead in Surrey. Good very fine