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Hero Doctor and the Dardanelles - Dr. Gurney White Buxton

Gurney White Buxton qualified in his profession in 1891, and in 1893 settled down to a doctor’s practice in Fenny Stratford, making his home at Ivy Dene, in the High Street. Prior to the outbreak of the First World War he held a commission in the 2nd South Midland Brigade, Mounted Ambulance, Territorial Royal Army Medical Corps, and thus when war was declared he was required, as a Captain, to join his unit. At first he and his corps would remain in England, but his medical practice, which he could no longer attend, was removed to Bracknell House. When sent on active service, Captain Buxton would be stationed on the shores of the Gallipoli Peninsula, from where he would subsequently write of his experience;

“We are now living in holes in the ground and sleep on the hard ground in dirt, and there is dirt all around, and we are all dirty. Water is very scarce and only just sufficient for our bottles. We are not comfortable and sleep in our clothes and boots, the nights being cold. We are, it is needless to say, in the Dardanelles, and really seeing active service. We see numbers of wounded soldiers and shells and bullets falling everywhere. …”

However, he was soon in declining health, and although his was the opinion that the illness could be shaken off, the medical authorities thought otherwise. They transferred him to a hospital ship, and aboard this vessel he tragically died from dysentery in January 1915, being buried at sea near Malta. Before the war, for many years Dr. Buxton had been a sidesman at St. Martin’s Church, where, near to where he used to sit, may now be seen a memorial tablet in bronze, mounted on an oak base.