His parentage is not certain, but he seems likely to have been the son of the Reverend William Henry M. Lonsdale born in Nottingham in 1879, a son of the Reverend Henry Lonsdale and his wife Jane Windley of Nottingham. W.H.M. Lonsdale and his wife, Geraldine, had, at least six children, several of whom were born in either Ceylon or India where he was a missionary. He went to Colombo with his wife in 1914. They returned to England with several children in 1921. He seems to have been the vicar of All Saints Church, Nottingham which had been built by his grandfather William Windley, until he went back to Ceylon with his wife and two children in 1929. They returned home for six months in 1934. With his wife, he spent three more years in Ceylon. He died in Durham in 1946

Charles John was educated at Radley.

Whilst up at Christ Church, he was a member of the OU Freshman’s XV and the University Boxing Club. In the Lent Term of 1930, he boxed at Lightweight in the University Match against RAF Officers He was knocked out in the First Round being brought down on his hands and knees, three times. [Flight March 7 1930.]

He was President of OU Carlton Club. He graduated with a 4th in Jurisprudence in 1931. In 1933, he joined Lewis’s Ltd.

He was a Lieutenant in the Cameron Highlanders TA and was promoted to Captain in 1939. He was invalided out and died in Birmingham.