Oxford merchant, politician and a local preacher, was born on 22 September 1841 in St. Ebbe's, Oxford, the son of a plumber. He became a coal merchant and subsequently an auctioneer, from 1911 the partnership being Buckell & Ballard. A UMFC local preacher, he switched to the Wesleyans in 1882, during Hugh Price Hugh's Oxford ministry, but resigned in 1888, despite attempts by the Local Preachers Meeting to persuade him to reconsider.
Elected a town councillor, he became the Liberal leader and was mayor in 1885/6, 1890/1, 1896-7, 1905, 1916-17 and 1918-19. He was also chairman of the Watch Committee, Director of the National Electric Company that developed the town's electric tramway, and a member of the School Board, and of the Thames Conservancy. A Freemason,, he was knighted in 1907 and also received an honorary degree from Oxford University. He died on 1 June 1925.