Intelligence Corps Officer with MI5
Sidney Henry Noakes was born on 6th January 1905, the second child of Thomas Frederick Noakes, a Civil Servant, and Ada Noakes. Sidney had an elder brother, Harold, and a younger sister, Phyllis.
Both his parents died within a year of each other before the First World War broke out and his brother Harold was killed in action aged 18 in July 1917 at Ypres, whilst a member of the Royal Flying Corps.
Sidney was then brought up by a foster family and sent to Merchant Taylor’s School, Hertfordshire where he played rugby for the School and was a strong student, winning several academic prizes.
In 1925 he went up to Oxford to study Law (Jurisprudence) and was involved in many aspects – sporting and social – of St John’s College, Oxford. In 1928 he graduated and was called to the bar at Lincoln’s Inn.
Sidney Noakes was commissioned into the Intelligence Corps in 1943, rising quickly to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel.
The details of his wartime career are sparsely recorded as he spent the majority of it with MI5.
What we do know is that he was in a position to directly acquire the false identity document and braces of SS Chief Heinrich Himmler.
Sidney Noakes had a successful 40-year legal career culminating as a Judge, holding multiple Judiciary appointments in the 1960s County Courts on the Surrey, Hertfordshire and Kent circuits.
His peacetime hobbies were golf, walking and gardening and he was also a participating Freemason.
He married briefly and had one daughter, remaining close to his sister Phyllis and her children and grandchildren, to whom he was affectionately known as ‘Uncle Boiler’!
He retired to Hove in Sussex and died there in February 1993.