Rev. Alfred Sadd

Cambridge District Scout Archive

Scout and Missionary

From Maldon, Essex Alfred went to the Leys (Cambridge) in 1923 aged 14 and Cheshunt theological college, Cambridge.  He was involved in student Missionary campaigns.  The Rev Alfred Sadd did a great deal of preaching locally and is recorded as working as near Huntingdon. 

Alfred was instrumental in starting a Sea Scout Troop and is wearing a Scout lapel badge in the photograph below.  The group has not yet been identified, probably being Maldon Sea Scouts, his home town.  The 1st Cambridge Sea Scouts re registered in 1928 and no clear link with this Troop or any Crews or Groups in Cambridge town has been made. He joined the Cheshunt College Crew of the Cambridge University Rovers (31st Cambridge) and his enthusiasm was likely central to 50% of that College joining.

The uncertainty about his local connections place this page in ‘Elsewhere’ – we cannot quite claim him as our own.

From Gilwell collection

He became a missionary for the London Missionary Society and went to the Gilbert Islands in 1934, ‘where the sea to a large extent dominates the life of the islanders and where the Scout Troop is a valuable part of the Missions activities.’  LMS records ‘He habitually introduced himself as ‘Hello I’m Sadd, but I’m not’. 

He elected to stay with the islanders when the Japanese invaded and he was beheaded by the Japanese on 25th October 1942 aged 33.   21 other New Zealand and Australians died on that occasion.                            

The Kiribati Scout Association, formally Gilbert and Ellice Islands, record the death of a British scoutmaster during the Japanese occupation.  This is Alfred Sadd who worked with the 1st Gilberts Scout Troop and Crew.  Further details are given in ‘The Left Handshake’ by Hilary St George Saunders. 

Senior Scouts were told the story in 1949.  The story if not the name was recollected in 2018 by older Scouters.

1938 Rovers Course Gilwell Park Listed as Gilbert Islands alongside others from Belgium, Holland and India.

JWR Archivist July 2019

See also Left hand shake p 151-153