Skip to content ↓

View entry

Back to search results

Name: WOODLEY, Frank Mascotte de Medewe

image of individual

Birth Date: 10 Mar 1883 South Yarra, Victoria, Australia

Death Date: 28 Jan 1938 Tanga

Nationality: Australian

First Date: 1919

Last Date: 1938

Profession: Was secretary of the Nairobi Jockey Club and quite well known as a gentleman rider.

Area: Nairobi, Kipipiri Naivasha, Red 31 has F. Woodley, Lake Garage, Naivasha

Married: 1. In Durban 1905 Maud Lilian Cairns Dunn b. 1885, d. 27 Aug 1937 Cape Town (div. 1912); 2. In Nairobi 1919 Laura Ellen Hassam b. 20 Dec 1890 Plumstead, d. 12 Nov 1960 Nairobi

Children: 1. Charles William Clive de Medewe (1906 Pretoria-1937 Lolgorien) 2. Cara Elizabeth de Medewe (Destro) (6 Dec 1921 Nairobi-14 Sep 1999 Ross on Wye); Judy (1922); Pamela Mary (1924-1925); Frank William de Medewe (3 Mar 1929 Nairobi-1995); Benjamin (stillborn)

Book Reference: Sundown, Elephant People, KAD, Red 25, Red 31, Hut, Bongo Woodley, Elephant People

War Service: With Australian Army in Boer War and afterwards settled in S. Africa. Fought in EA Campaign in WW1 and then came to Kenya

General Information:

Hut has F. Woodley 1930 Lake Garage Naivasha
Sundown - On his marriage to Ellen they lived in a pleasant little house near the gate of the old racecourse. After the Jockey Club he went to work as manager of the 'Marula' Estate owned by Sir John Ramsden at Kipipiri, near Naivasha. Frank was a thin wiry man with angular features and blue eyes that looked you straight in the eye  
Red 25 - Secretary and Treasurer, Jockey Club of Kenya - Frank Woodley
Bongo Woodley - His son Clive died in 1937 when the cable snapped in a gold mine lift in Lolgorien and he is buried in the saddle of that hill along with another mzungu [white man] [John Wilmot Payne]
Woodley [son] lived in a small farmhouse on the Athi plains 9 miles from Nairobi, and a mile across country from Nairobi Park. ...... This was where Woodley came to live when he was 8, when his mother bought the place and 50 acres for £250 after his father died. She lived there alone, a straight-backed, clear-eyed Englishwoman from Woolwich, who had first come out in 1913 as governess to a family of prospective settlers.
Laura Ellen Hassam, as she was then, had married in 1919 an Australian named Frank de Medewe Woodley. He had been in Africa since the Kaiser War during which he had served in the campaign against the Germans; he had later settled in Kenya. They had two children, Judy and Frank William (Billy). Clive, a son of Frank Woodley's by a previous marriage, had completed the family. And a friend, and almost one of them, was a lodger, Arthur Orchardson. In 1929, when Billy was born, his father was the Secretary of the Kenya Jockey Club. Billy remembered him as a sort of folksy rolling stone with a fund of apt, if earthy, capsules of wisdom. Clive had been killed in 1937, in a mining accident and the following year Frank Woodley had died of a heart attack in Tanganyika, leaving the family practically destitute. .....…..
Away in the distance on either side they could just see the homesteads of the neighbouring white farmers - the Destros, who sold their milk in Nairobi; old McDowell, an ardent pigeon fancier; the Visagies; the Kloppers, who had several lovely daughters and made the best biltong, drying out the meat on wires stretched across the bedrooms; the Francescons; the Watsons; the Sands - all of them solid, no-nonsense people, with whose children and whose African servants' and squatters' children Woodley had grown up. Woodley's mother had never fussed over him. She was a positive, forthright character who believed in letting him learn to take care of himself. He went barefoot most of the time, and he might be away from home sometimes for 2 or 3 days, sleeping in the open and living on impala or Thomson's gazelle he and his friends shot for the pot ..... two important influences in Frank's life - Alan Black and Charles (Tiger) Marriott. .......
Barnes Langata Cemetery, Nairobi in loving memory / of / Laura Ellen Woodley / died 12th November 1960

Back to search results