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Eynsham Village News

George Bolsover (1920-1987) 1 Mar 1998 This is part of a long report by Martin J Harris on medical care in Eynsham, first published in Eynsham Record 15, 1998

George 'Derrick' Bolsover, MB BCH Oxon MBE is still fondly remembered by his patients. He was born 29 April 1920 in the Sheffield area, the son of a metallurgist, said to be descended from Thomas Bolsover the inventor of Sheffield plate in the 18th century. He went to King Edward's School, Sheffield before coming to Oxford to study medicine where he graduated from New College in 1943. As a result of his sporting achievements at Oxford he was made a member of Vincent's Club. After doing house jobs under physician Dr Alec Cooke at the Radcliffe Infirmary he married Yoma. He was then sent to Burma returning in 1946.

He spent some time working in West Africa as a locum and visited the scene of the Italian earthquake with the Kidlington Round Table.

He teamed up with Dr Tighe in 1947-1948 (just before the NHS started) and lived in Long Hanborough dealing mainly with patients in the Long Hanborough area although he had to do most of the night visits for all patients being the junior GP and perhaps due to Dr Tighe's poor health.

After Dr Tighe's death the Bolsover family moved to the Shrubbery in Eynsham. Fortunately the Tighe family had kept the place very tidy although it was equipped with only a few electricity points.

Dr Bolsover was regarded as an extremely talented and outstanding GP. He practised medical hypnotism and was amused when nurse Gill Williams sat in on a session and was hypnotised along with the patient. He also once appeared on a television show about medical ethics. He often preferred the one-ear piece type stethoscope, along with old fashioned and alternative medicines. He knew his patients well enough to know who was related to whom within Eynsham and the surrounding villages. Although medicine was his life, and despite a knee injury when a young adult, he still found time to be a keen golfer as a member of Frilford Heath Golf Club.

Marjorie Crossley, who also came from near Sheffield, worked as a secretary for Dr Bolsover and the other doctors from 1965 to 1989. She greatly enjoyed typing Dr Bolsover's witty letters. She also recalled how during the day Dr Bolsover would disappear for coffee, a pipe smoke and perhaps the latest cricket results, which hopefully wouldn't make him too late for his surgery.

Dr Bolsover was chairman of the local medical committee from 1964-1983 and chairman of the Oxford Division of the British Medical Association in 1960. In 1985 he was awarded the MBE for his work and services to the community.

He died on 4 December 1987 from cancer. His ashes were buried in Eynsham churchyard. A thanksgiving service was held on 23 January 1988 at Eynsham church, the address being given by Dr Simpson.

There were five children. Leigh, one of the daughters who accompanied her parents to Buckingham Palace to collect the MBE, believes that Yoma was probably more 'chuffed' about the honour than Dr Bolsover.

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