James Benjamin Budden was born on January 17th 1852 in Loders, Dorset. He was the youngest child of Benjamin Budden(c 1813) and Arabella bray (c 1811). James married Harriet Froom (or Frome) in Pewsey in 1882. Harriet was born in Hungerford in 1855. They had eight children. At the time of the 1881 census James was living at 3 Park View, Norwood, Middlesex. His occupation was railway switchman. In 1891 James was living with his wife Harriet at 17 Randolph Road, Southall, Middlesex and was described as a railway signalman. James died in 1948 and was buried at Osterley Park Road, Southall, Middlesex. Harriet died in 1930.
From stories told to me by older relatives it appears that James had a forceful personality. May Langdon daughter of Winifred Budden told me the following story-
"James met his future wife Harriet in church. Her banns were being read for her forthcoming marriage. As they were read James turned around and whispered to Harriet, 'you're not marrying him, you're marrying me'. Not long afterwards Harriet's intended spouse died and she did indeed marry James."
James was a well known person when he lived in Southall, Middlesex. He had a habit of walking in front of buses and holding up his cane to stop them. He had no concept of waiting in a queue which my father John Stephenson, found very embarrassing when James took him out as a boy.