Heritage Guide to The Geelong College

Search the Guide

To find information in this Guide please select one of the green coloured options.

To Select a Page Group when displayed, right click and select 'Open'.

Copyright Conditions Apply.

CHAMP, Finlay Campling Uchtred Knox (1891-1971)

CHAMP, Finlay Campling Uchtred Knox (1891-1971)

Finlay Champ was born on the 10 May 1891, the son of a former Scotch College student, James Knox Champ and his wife Clara nee Smythe. He was enrolled as a student at Geelong College from 1900 later attending Melbourne Gramar School. His enrolment address at Geelong College was Noble St, Geelong.

He was farming at Darra near Meredith, when he enlisted in the AIF, and embarked on 21 October 1914 as a Lieutenant with the 5th Battalion on HMAT A3 Orvieto for Egypt, where he had medical problems, and was evacuated on 17 April 1915. After an operation for appendicitis the medical authorities advised his return to Australia.

In 1918, he married Dorothy Ormond Lloyd, daughter of Henry Frederick and Mary Catherine Lloyd. He died in 1971. His brothers, Charles Alexander Champ (1883-1963) and William Butler Napier Champ (1887-1961), were also educated at Geelong College.

His nephew, Jack Wilton Knox Champ (1913-1998), also an Old Geelong Collegian, served with the 2/6th Battalion AIF as a lieutenant in World War II and was taken prisoner in Greece on 9 May 1941. He was held in numerous German prison camps, including Oflag IVC Colditz, one of twenty Australians to be held there, until his release on 16 April 1945. Jack Champ was a reluctant prisoner who took part in two of the most spectacular mass escapes of the war, from Oflag VIB Warburg and Oflag VIIB Eichstatt, he told his story in The Diggers of Colditz, which he wrote in conjunction with Colin Burgess. The website briefly describes Colditz: 'Colditz was a very special camp at which the guards outnumbered the prisoners, and the castle was floodlit at night. Initially the Germans boasted that Colditz Castle was escape-proof, but they were wrong. By the end of the war there had been more escapes from Colditz than from any other prison of comparable size during both world wars.'

Sources: Based on an edited extract from Geelong Collegians at the Great War compiled by James Affleck; p 155 (citing National Archives; Pegasus; Jack Champ & Colin Burgess, The Diggers of Colditz).
© The Geelong College. Unless otherwise attributed, The Geelong College asserts its creative and commercial rights over all images and text used in this publication. No images or text material may be copied, reproduced or published without the written authorisation of The College.