About half a mile east of East Croydon station, running between Addiscombe Road and Lower Addiscombe Road, is Outram Road. Although it is not named after Benjamin Outram, the contractor for the Croydon, Merstham and Godstone Iron Railway, there is a family connection.
Benjamin Outram was the father of five children. The eldest, Francis, was born in 1801, and the second son, James, was born on 29 January 1803. Francis, at the age of 16, was awarded a place at the East India Company's Military College at Croydon. This had been established in 1809 at Addiscombe Place, to provide education for candicates for cadetship, to train them for military service in the Company's army in India. Francis was at the college from 1817 to 1819.
James Outram was also nominated for training at Addiscombe College, but was able to obtain a direct cadetship, so when Francis had completed his training, the two brothers travelled to India together. There Francis committed suicide in 1829, "in a fit of mental depression."
James went on to pursue a distinguished career as a military commander and administrator. He was promoted to major-general in 1854 and made a K.C.B. in 1856. In 1858 a baronetcy was conferred upon him and in the same year he was promoted to lieutenant-general. The account of his life in the Dictionary of National Biography occupies nine pages, and he was the subject of a two-volume biography.
Sir James Outram returned to England in July 1860, due to ill- health, and died on 11 March 1863. He was given a public funeral, and buried in Westminster Abbey. There is a statue of him on the Victoria Embankment.
Following the Indian Mutiny of 1857-58, the East India Company's Indian Army was amalgamated with the regular British Army in 1861, and Addiscombe College was closed. On 30 August 1861, the buildings and grounds were put up for sale by auction, and purchased by the British Land Company. They demolished the college buildings, and built houses over the whole site, grouped along five parallel roads, These roads were named after high-ranking officers and administrators who had served in India, but none of whom, in fact, had attended at Addiscombe College. One of these was named Outram Road after James Outram..