Hilda Francis Boles (nee Crofton)
of Rydon House, Talaton, Nr Exeter

Born: 1894 and died 1943.
Daughter of: Capt Duke Arthur Crofton RN (1850-1917) and Augusta Maude Lefroy (1854-1938).
Sister of:
1. Hugh Lefroy Crofton (1884-1917).
2. Philip Duke Crofton (1886-1951).
3. John Henry Crofton (1889-1914) known as Jack.
4. Richard Marsh Crofton (1891-195?).
5. Patrick George Crofton (1899-1938).
6. Amy Dundas Crofton (1893-1975).
Hida married: Cmmd Geoffrey Coleridge Boles (1887-1976?).
Hilda and Geoffrey had issue:
1. Sir Jack Dennis Boles (born 1925) who married; 1st Amey Benita Wormald (19??-1969), 2nd Anne Hermione Waldegrave (born 19??).
2. Daphne Francis Locke (nee Boles, born 19??) who married John Hugh Lock (born 19??).

Hilda Francis Boles: An Overview

The following note has been written by Hilda's son Sir Jack Dennis Boles.

“Hilda Frances Crofton was born on July 9th  1894, and her parents were Augusta Maude nee Lefroy and Duke Arthur Crofton of Lakefield, Mohill, Co Leitrim in Ireland. He was in the Royal Navy and during her childhood he retired and they moved back to Lakefield. She was the 6th child in a family of seven. In that remote part of Ireland it is probable that her schooling was mainly home teaching with a Governess.   Her father and two of her elder brothers died in the 1914-1918 war during which she became a Red Cross VAD nurse, and was posted to an Army hospital in France. Her training as a nurse became useful at the beginning of the 1939-1945 War when she and her 2 children were living in a small hamlet in mid-Devon. Her husband had rejoined the Royal Navy in 1938. She was appointed Assistant Commandant of the wartime Cottage Hospital that opened in an old school in Crediton, providing medical facilities for the soldiers stationed locally.

In 1921 she married Geoffrey Coleridge Boles, an officer in the Royal Navy, in 1921. Their children were Daphne Francis, and a son, John (Jack) Dennis. Daphne married John Hugh Loch in 1948.  Jack married Amey Benita Wormald in 1953 and she died in 1969.  In 1971 he married Anne Hermione Waldegrave. Hilda organised the purchase and move to Rydon House, Talaton in East Devon in 1942. She died of cancer in February 1943 and is buried in Talaton.

Hilda loved living in the country; she was a good horsewoman, an excellent and creative gardener, a good cook and housewife. She was a sincere Christian and worked hard for her church. She enjoyed skiing and indeed became engaged on a skiing holiday in the French Alps, when she  is reputed to have told Geoffrey that she would only pull him out of a snowdrift if he promised to marry her.  At home she showed cunning and skill at family croquet, and at lawn tennis where her underarm service was very effective. During her long and painful last illness, she showed great courage and Christian fortitude.


If anyone has any information to add to what is listed please contact me on jj@jjhc.info