OLIVER, Gwendolen

1909 - 1962

Gwendolen Oliver was born at Coggeshall, Essex on 15 November 1909, youngest of the two daughters of Revd Harri Oliver (16 July 1876-1 June 1930), congregational minister at Coggeshall, and his wife Margaret Lewis, daughter of David Lewis of Langharne, Carmarthenshire, who married at Stamford Hill Congregational Church, Hackney, London on 21 February 1907. In 1911, Gwendolen was a 1-year-old, living at The Manse, Coggeshall with her parents, 34-year-old Harri and 40-year-old Margaret, and her 3 year old sibling sister Winifred Eileen. She studied at Milton Mount College, Crawley, Worth, Sussex and in 1928 she exhibited at the Walker Art Gallery from 81 Royal Avenue, Lowestoft, a town where her father had been pastor for some five years. In 1929 the family moved to Bocking, Essex where her father died in 1930 and in 1931 Gwendolen was living with her widowed mother at 3 London Road, Braintree, Essex. In 1939, an art school mistress, living at 'Domburg', Herne Bay Road, Sturry, Kent, the home of the Back family. She married at Colchester, Essex in 1953, Edgar Harry Cunningham (16 February 1913-16 March 1990), a schoolteacher. Gwendolen Cunningham was of 18 Cambridge Road, Colchester when she died at The Essex County Hospital, Colchester on 28 April 1962.