Rob Forsyth

Leonard Arthur LONG (1898-1966) was one of the two sons of the first marriage of Thomas Herbert Long (see below) of Castle House.

Leonard enlisted on 19 August 1916 in the Army Service Corps (Regimental No 25265) - Mechanical Transport Company. He was mobilised on 16 February 1917 but by then was in the 1st Battalion The Royal East Kent regiment (The Buffs). At some stage in 1918 he was transferred to the 10th East Kents.

He was in France in 1917 and again in 1918 between 18 January and 26 March and with the BEF from 9 August to 20 September and was taken prisoner which was reported on 21 September.  He was repatriated on 30 December. He is recorded as being a Prisoner of War in the Deddington Deanery Magazine extract for December 1918 on p.43 of A Parish at War and p.6 of The Supplement.

He was transferred to the reserves on 15 September 1919 and was discharged sometime in October of that year.

Leonard became a confectionery salesman and subsequently married Nancy née Phillips. He was an accomplished pianist and she was a professional violinist who ultimately became Leader of one of the major London orchestras. Their daughter, Mary, was a professional viola player and played in the same orchestra.


Thomas Herbert LONG (1875-1942) was born in Bury St Edmunds and moved to Norwich in the early 1900s. He then moved to Deddington in 1918 where he purchased Castle House and lived there until 1934. He was a confectionery wholesaler and owned several shops in Oxford. He had two sons and a daughter, Kathleen,from his first marriage. Kathleen became an international concert pianist.

His second marriage produced two more sons, John and James, both of whom learned to play the piano and the organ and frequently played in Deddington church. Thomas was himself a talented musician, no doubt where all his children got their musical training, and he was, I think, organist and choirmaster at the church.

Simon Whitney-Long, eldest son of James, arranged for his father to visit Castle House in 2001 on his 90th birthday and has kindly provided this further information about his family.