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Printed From: BMPT Forum
Category: General Discussion
Forum Name: Coastal Forces
Forum Description: Discussion about Coastal Forces
Printed Date: 06 December 2023 at 10:31am

Topic: Obituaries
Posted By: Pioneer
Subject: Obituaries
Date Posted: 30 April 2007 at 11:43am


These pages are dedicated to the memory of all ‘Coastal Forces’ combatants and support personnel.

If you wish to add a name here please contact the BMPT, or ‘Pioneer’ through the sites ‘PM’ facility with details.

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One of our hero's, Lt David Wickins, will be remembered at a Service of Thanksgiving for his life at St Brides Chapel, London. on the 3rd May at 11.30 am. Mrs Wickins extends an invitation to attend to any members of the CFVA or any other persons who knew him.

David Wickins was one of those rare persons who joined as an A/B, became Ldg Seaman - progressed up to Cox'n PO -then Sub/Lt on "D" type  MTB's 752 and 604. He finally settled down with his wife in Santa Ponsa. Mallorca where he died at the end of January 2007.

Pioneer - Forum Moderator

Posted By: Pioneer
Date Posted: 01 May 2007 at 11:02am

An appreciation for the life of another hero

Lt Cdr DEREK HANCOCK 1923 – 2006

Derek Hancock was born in 1923 in Chelsea.  He was educated in London at St Juliana’s and then the Salesian College, Battersea.  After leaving school he worked for a short time at Semtex, Caversham where he met Irene, his future wife. He joined the Navy in December ’41 as an Ordinary Seaman with a potential commission ( Y Scheme).  After training  he was drafted to HMS Kale on ocean escort duties.  In mid ’43 he underwent officer training and was commissioned as a Midshipman.  He requested to go into Coastal Forces and went on to serve as Lt Cdr on several motor gunboats during the remainder of the war, taking part in escort duties on D Day.

On leaving the Navy after the war, he studied for, and was awarded a Degree in Engineering through the University of London in 1949.  In 1952 he married Irene and became a father to Tim in 1958 and Jan in 1960.  During this time he lived first in Tonbridge, and then for many years in Crowborough.  His working career in management spanned 30 years during which time he was employed by Tubewrights, Charrington Gardner Locket and Concorde Lighting.

It was in his so called “retirement” that he perhaps blossomed most, moving to Fulking and being very involved with the community there, through the Parish Council, the Parochial Church Council, as well as involvement with his own Catholic church in Shoreham.  He worked for the Citizens Advice Bureau in Lancing as an advisor for over 20 years, and for SSAFA in a similar capacity for many years.

A few years after Irene’s death in 1996, he moved to Newick to be close to his family and was equally involved in serving the community during the 7 years that he lived there, as well as being a loving grandfather to his four grandchildren.

He was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumour in June 2006 and after a short illness, died peacefully with his family, at home on 10 September 2006.  He is greatly missed by family and friends.

Pioneer - Forum Moderator

Posted By: Pioneer
Date Posted: 01 May 2007 at 4:47pm

An appreciation for the life of

Lt Cdr Tom Ladner RCN. 1916 – 2006.


Tom Ladner was born on the 8th December 1916 in Vancouver – the son of Lawyer, MP, Diplomat – Mr Leon Ladner, and Grandson of a Cornish miner who had sought his fortune in the Californian and Fraser River gold rushes before turning his hand at farming.

Educated at the Shawnigan Lake School on Vancouver Island – then Leys School Cambridge. He went on to the University of British Columbia - then into Osgoode Hall Law School in Toronto. During a debate in the University he had proposed that Canada should withdraw from the Union of the British Empire if GB should declare War. However, once War was declared he volunteered alongside his closest friends –‘ Corney’ Burke and ‘Wimpy’ Maitland and they generally became known as ‘The Three Musketeers’ during their War time careers.

By Wartimes end – Maitland had earned a DSC and Bar, a Croix-de-Guerre and two mentions in dispatches. Burke had earned a DSC and two Bars with four mentions in dispatches while Tom Ladner earned the DSC and Bar with four mentions in dispatches.

After his initial training at HMCS York, Toronto he transferred to HMS King Alfred Sussex UK for his commission – arriving in the UK during the first day light bombing raid on London.

His first posting was onto a former Canadian Pacific Liner – by then the Armed Merchant Cruiser ‘Forfar’. She was torpedoed by the famous U-Boat ace Kapitan Lt Otto Kretschmer in U99.

Tom Ladner was one of the 27 survivors

He joined Coastal Forces with the 8th MGB Flotilla and became the CO of MGB 75.

During one raid off the Dutch Coast his boat became so damaged that he could not make the ‘open sea’, so he hid his craft behind a large Buoy ..”until things quietened down”.. He then made his way back to Felixstowe on two Engines only with a large hole in the Bow - taking a short cut through a minefield.

After a two month leave – which he managed to take in Canada – he returned to join a ‘Dog Boat’ Flotilla and headed for the Mediterranean Theatre. It was in this area that he earned his first DSC There are many of his exploits that could be recorded here but luckily they can be found in the many books written about the Mediterranean War – he was a real hero and we owe so much to the likes of Lt Cdr Ladner – his Crew’s - and of course his contemporaries from all the former Dominions

Pioneer - Forum Moderator

Posted By: Pioneer
Date Posted: 09 May 2007 at 7:53pm

Mike Munns.  


The passing of Mike Munns on the 13th April 2007 was received with great sadness. I had been in touch with Mike up until very recently having written – by land mail – to his home in Lauriton Australia regarding his wartime experiences on MTB 671.

Very generous by nature, this gentleman hero was able to assist a relative of one of his former shipmates who had lost his life when 671 was destroyed in action off the Channel Island of Alderney in April 1944. Mike, fatefully, was not on board that night – having been ‘drafted’ out to the Mediterranean just weeks before – but he remembered and honoured that particular crew and Flotilla (55th) until his last days.


Mike had signed on – quite illegally by altering his age – when just 16. He recalled that the PO Cox of 671, ”Dixie” Dean, had some suspicion of his age and called down the For’d Hatchway one day - “Munns! The CO wants to see you in the Wardroom at mid-day!” Suspecting that his age had been tumbled – or worse still - that a bottle of rum that he had managed to smuggle off the boat to post home (gained by swapping his tobacco ration for the daily rum issue not available to him) had been discovered, he became very nervous as the time approached. A laughing “Dixie” Dean eventually arrived and said that he was pulling his leg but to “be careful in the future” as he had seen him tying the bottle to his leg before the last Shore Leave. He remembered with deep affection all his shipmates – he met up with the two survivors of that fateful night - Sub Lt Colin Morley – Navigating Officer and A/B Alfred Day DSM – Twin Oerlikon Gunner – after the War. He was the very last member of the crew of 671. During the latter part of his life Mike managed to obtain a commemorative car number plate (in Australia) and it is fitting that it is repeated here “LEST WE FORGET”


Mike Munns

1926 – April 13 2007.


Pioneer - Forum Moderator

Posted By: Pioneer
Date Posted: 15 May 2007 at 8:44pm

Captain Alasdair Macdonald Watson, D.S.C., V.R.D., R.N.R.

Captain Alasdair Watson, who has died aged 87, fought, as commanding officer of Motor Torpedo Boat 5001, in one of the last naval actions of the Second World War in the North Sea.

On 6th April 1945, with neither moon nor phosphorescence, conditions ideal for attack operations, six German E-boats sped from the Hook of Holland to make a final gesture of defiance in the Second World War. They were far across the North Sea before they were picked-up by a Wellington bomber equipped with radar and VHF communications.    As the E-boats closed the line of buoys through which convoys passed, the frigate, HMS Cubitt, closed from the north and opened fire causing them to turn north into a trap.

MTBs 781 and 5001 were waiting further north and were ordered to steer west and were almost on top of the enemy when they sighted them heading at right angles across their bows.   MTB 781 passing close astern and raking the enemy with gunfire just missed ramming the nearest E-boat.    MTB 5001 broke through the enemy’s line, exchanging fire with the boats port and starboard.    Turning to starboard in a classical Nelsonian manoeuvre both MTBs continued to engage the enemy at close range and the E-boats swung round to escape to the south-east.    Although badly damaged the E-boats returned fire hitting 5001, which, unlike diesel-engined German boats, was driven by highly flammable petrol stored aft.  MTB 781 turned to the rescue meeting 5001 bow-on to avoid the impending petrol explosion astern, enabling the crew to escape by jumping from one vessel to the other. 

Alasdair Macdonald Watson was born in Edinburgh on 24th February 1920, the eldest of five children.    His father, Alexander Pirie Watson was a surgeon in the Great War and his mother, Ann (née) Macdonald, a nursing sister, served in Queen Alexandra’s Imperial Military Nursing Service in Salonika.      His first interest in the Navy was sparked, aged five, watching destroyers in the Firth of Forth.     

Educated at the Edinburgh Academy and Fort Augustus Abbey School, Alasdair excelled at rugger and won his school colours in 1938.  The headmaster, Commander Fairie R.N. encouraged his interest in the sea by purchasing an old fishing boat for use by the boys on Loch Ness.

He enrolled as a medical student at Edinburgh University in 1939; but the war intervened. Enlisting on 2nd August 1940 as an Ordinary Seaman in the Royal Navy at Rosyth, he was posted to Lancing College and, after six weeks living in garages in Hove, he started 21st August 1941 as a naval rating and ended the day as Lieutenant, Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve.

Alasdair was posted to HMS St. Christopher, Fort William to learn Fast Motor Boats.      In January 1942 he was 1st Lieutenant of MGB 326 and on the night of 27th/28th February 1942 took part in Operation Biting.    That night bombers dropped an airborne assault group on the Bruneval German radar station. They attacked the site, photographed equipment, took components and retreated to the beach rendezvous; but the navy was delayed waiting silently in the dark while a German convoy passed across their bows before repatriating the raiding party.

In August 1942, as 1st Lieutenant of MGB 326, Alasdair served in the main landing at Dieppe, and was mentioned in despatches. 

He served in 12th and 14th MGB flotillas earmarked for clandestine operations, ferrying frogmen for beach samples and SOE agents to the French coast, he was again mentioned in despatches.

On D-Day 6th June 1944 he commanded MGB 330 leading the assault wave from Portsmouth, and escorting Landing Ship HMS Prince Henry, carrying his cousin, Lieutenant Ian Macdonald, Canadian Scottish Regiment, to the beaches of Normandy, where four days later he was killed.

Ironically in 1945, Alasdair was appointed Senior Officer German E-Boats based for evaluation at HMS Hornet, Portsmouth.  He was awarded the DSC in December 1945 for his war service.

From 1946 he spent many happy years teaching maths, science, coaching rugby and athletics at Dalhousie Castle, Melville House, Ladybank and Clifton Hall Schools.

In 1951 he joined the Royal Naval Reserve at HMS Claverhouse and from 1958 to 1966 he commanded HMS Scotia, a training establishment in Pitreavie.   In 1963 he was promoted Captain and served as ADC to the Queen, retiring from the navy in 1971.

Alasdair was president of the Combined Operations Association based near Furnace on the shores of Loch Fyne, where he lived, the scene of many exercises for the Normandy invasion.

In 1960 he married Isobel Elizabeth “Elsie” Crawford of Comrie, a keen golfer, with whom he spent many happy years until her death in 1994.   Related through his mother to the Macdonalds of Keppoch, Alasdair wore Keppoch tartan and is buried in the family plot at Cille Choirill, Roy Bridge.


Pioneer - Forum Moderator

Posted By: Pioneer
Date Posted: 05 June 2007 at 10:23pm

Dennis Fisher 1926 – 2007.

Dennis enjoyed a long and full life. Born to Frederick and Alice Fisher on 14th April 1926 in Friern Barnet, he mainly grew up in Carshalton and attended Homefield School in Sutton and then Epsom College. He joined the Navy towards the end of the Second World War and served on HMS Diadem which took him to both the Caribbean and Norway - cementing his lifelong love of the sea.

   Once out of the Navy Dennis continued his studies with his father's firm and qualified as a solicitor. He pursued a long and distinguished career in the City of London, becoming Senior Partner of Stafford Young Jones and serving for 27 years as a member of the Common Council of the City of London. He took a particular interest in the business of the Irish Society, becoming its Deputy Governor, and he also served a term as the Master of the Solicitors' Livery Company.

    Away from work Dennis was also a committed family man and father to six children; David, Carol, Jean, John, Andrew and Keith. Relaxation came in the form of sailing and Dennis' other "children" included Popeye, Jacanda, Diadem and Moody Lady, all of which were moored near Chichester and provided many happy hours for all the family. Dennis was also a keen model railway hobbyist and his home in Banstead could easily rival his daily commute to London Bridge station for rolling stock.

    In retirement, although increasingly limited by the lung disease he rarely complained about, Dennis supported the RNLI by raising funds and becoming treasurer of the Banstead branch. He joined Probus and also took an active interest in the Old Epsomian society, thereby catching up with a number of old school friends. He enjoyed photography and the advent of digital cameras and computers gave a new impetus to his interest. Through this he recorded his and Jenny's cruises, particularly his recent visits to Norway and the Arctic Circle which allowed him to meet up again with his great friend Lilil, who he first met as a result of Oslo's black market in nylons and cigarettes back in 1946!

    Indeed many of Dennis' friendships stood the test of many years. His intense loyalty to his family and friends is evident from many of his relationships: with Jennifer, his loving wife of 40 very happy years; with special friends such as Pat and Gordon and Norah and Dick; and with work colleagues such as Bruce Christer who has been such a help in so many ways. The esteem in which Dennis was held has been reflected in the many generous tributes paid by friends, neighbours and colleagues in the kind letters of condolence received by Jenny and the family. A common theme soon emerges from reading these letters: that Dennis was a quiet and caring man whose kindness, decency and cheerfulness made a lasting impression on many people, who all felt he was a truly gentle gentleman.

    He is survived by his wife Jennifer, his six children and twelve grandchildren and he will be sadly missed by us all.

Pioneer - Forum Moderator

Posted By: Pioneer
Date Posted: 20 August 2007 at 2:13pm

As a long time and well respected member of the British Military Powerboat Trust.

– An exceptional gentleman who became fully engrossed with the aims of the Trust –

It is felt to be fitting that an appreciation for his life should be made on these pages.


Squadron Leader Bevis Denton (`Bob’) Davies AFC RAF

`Bob’ Davies was born on 11th July 1920 at Gravesend where his father was a Trinity House river pilot.  His father had served in the Royal Navy commanding a destroyer during World War One and a flotilla of mine sweepers in World War 2.

He was awarded the DSC.

Bob was actually christened `Bevis Denton’ However, from a very young age Bevis Denton Davies knew his own mind and assumed the Christian name of Bob, which stuck.

He was educated at Gravesend Grammar School, `matriculated’ and gained a place at the College of Aero and Auto Engineering in Sidney Street, Chelsea.

His flying training started in September 1941, on the ubiquitous ‘Tiger Moth’. Being selected to complete his training in the United States, Bob was awarded his wings and commissioned on 5th September 1942.  It was at this stage of his flying career that his exceptional flying skills were first recognized and he became a Qualified Flying Instructor: After collecting his officer’s uniform, he moved to California, and then to South Carolina, where he spent the next 8 months honing his QFI flying skills. Returning to the UK in summer 1943, but having to go through the whole British retraining process – Bob did not join a Bomber Squadron until July 1944.

Bob and his crew then completed 18 day and night operations with the Squadron, during a period of very heavy losses for all of RAF’s bomber fleet.  Bob was a great believer in `luck’, and over this period he had his fair share: In September 1944, a bomb dropped by a Lancaster flying above them fell through his aircraft just aft of the top gunner’s position. Apart from the tail gunner losing his oxygen supply, the aircraft continued to behave normally. They set course for home but due to the weather, in the end had to make a forced landing at Old Buckenham south of Norwich.

A man of independent spirit he not have too much respect for `rules’, demonstrated in an earlier episode when an unauthorized long weekend led to some days of reflection in the `bad boys’ detention centre at Shedfield.  He was also admonished for inadvertently wrecking his COs nearly new `runabout’ aircraft.

None of this though was considered particularly important as Bob was promoted to acting Squadron Leader and posted as a flight Commander to 214 Squadron, flying from Oulton. Bob’s luck continued to hold. Returning on three engines from one countermeasure operation, he was given priority to land and the aircraft ahead was instructed to `go round again’. Unfortunately, this aircraft was shot down by a German night fighter intruder. A short time later, the intruder returned and shot up the de-briefing room just as Bob and one of his crew were leaving. Bob remained with 214 Squadron until the end of the war, completing some 12 operations, including the Dresden raid. He was recommended for a DFC by his Squadron and Station Cdr, but it was refused at Group level for reasons unknown.

After the war, Bob wanted to remain flying and joined No 102 Squadron engaged mainly in trooping flights to Karachi. Unsurprisingly it was Bob who flew the last operational Liberator sortie.

In 1946, Bob converted to the Avro `York’ and joined No. 242 Squadron at Oakington flying lengthy trooping flights to Singapore. It was on this route, in 1947, that he collected his Court Martial for indulging in a little unauthorized formation flying – which might have passed unnoticed had they not been involved in a slight collision. Both aircraft landed safely but disciplinary procedures were inevitable. Bob was fortunate to receive only a reprimand and loss of his B/VIP flying category from the Court Martial. He was grounded for a period working in squadron ops and then only allowed to fly freighting sorties. In the summer of 1948, the Berlin Airlift changed everything and during 10 months he flew 330 sorties, at an average of 1 a day.

After his outstanding efforts on the airlift, he was posted to White Waltham, as the personal pilot to the C in C Home Command – Air Marshall Sir Robert Foster, flying a De Havilland `Dove/Devon’.  Bob and his navigator were exceptional aviators – a necessity in the VIP role - their skills being highly regarded by the Air Marshal despite some unusual but successful bad weather approach techniques and when Sir Robert Foster was promoted to Air Chief Marshal and posted to RAF Germany, Bob and his Navigator went with him.

Bob was to fly many famous politicians/world leaders including the German leaders, Conrad Adenauer and Willi Brandt, who always rewarded him with a case of Rhine wine. During this period he was awarded his Air Force Cross, recommended by the ACM, but in his usual stubborn way, insisted that if he was to be decorated, then so should his Master Navigator who was duly awarded the Air Force Medal.

In early 1955, Bob returned to the UK to join the Transport Command Examining Unit, where he qualified to examine crews flying `Anson’, `Devon’, `Valetta’ and `Viking’ aircraft. This took him all over the RAF world and it was in this period that Bob’s first marriage ended in divorce. However during the divorce procedures, Bob met Eunice. This time Bob had met his match, they were married and were to share the rest of his life together.

In 1958, he was posted to the Officers Initial Training School. Despite his own rather checkered career, Bob was a hard task master. After this brush with the personnel world, Bob found himself at a desk job in the Personal Department of the Air Ministry in Theobalds Road, which he stuck until the summer of 1963, retiring at the age of 43

Apart from flying, Bob had two other great passions in his life: one was his beloved Bull Terriers, of which he had nine consecutively over 45 years; the other was cars, particularly owning and driving large American cars. The next few years all involved driving and chauffeuring, using his own and others cars until finally he became a chauffeur with the Bahrain Embassy, for whom he worked for 13 years until his final retirement in 1990 at age 70.

In retirement, Bob did a lot for RAF Squadron Associations, in particular that of No 214 Squadron, serving on the Committee from the beginning,

Bob’s final years were trying, even with Eunice at his side. His rapidly failing eyesight meant that he had to give up the pleasure of owning and driving his special cars and, as his eyesight continued to deteriorate, he could no longer read, relying on `talking books’. Bob bore all of this with stoicism and fortitude, his dry sense of humour always to the fore.

In an RAF career spanning some 23 years, of which nearly 20 had been in the cockpit, Bob flew 30 wartime operations and 330 flights on the Berlin Airlift; in a total of 23 different aircraft types and logged 7315 flying hours. He was an exceptional pilot – one of the top 10% -, a thinking but risk taking pilot – and more importantly - he never lost the twinkle in his blue eyes.  He had no respect for self important, self serving authority - but he nevertheless rose above some difficult times to become a highly respected senior officer in his Service.

He still felt however that he – a survivor – had a responsibility to those who didn’t finish the course and he completed a great act of pilgrimage, identifying and recording the graves of all those airmen who had died flying with 214 Sqn.  

Bob to the end was a truly lucky man.


Pioneer - Forum Moderator

Posted By: Pioneer
Date Posted: 03 December 2007 at 2:52pm

Vice-Admiral Sir Roy Halliday

Naval aviator who won the DSC in the Far East and rose to become the MoD head of intelligence

With conscription inescapable with a world war under way, Roy Halliday (universally known as “Gus”) volunteered for the Royal Navy from University College School, London, in 1941 rather than risk being called up into the Army. His previous seagoing experience had been the hardship of a deckhand's life in a Lowestoft fishing trawler.

Entering as an ordinary seaman, RNVR, he was soon offered a commission and asked if he would like to train as a naval pilot. Flattered and excited, he did not make the connection that it was the casualty rate in this category that prompted his elevation.

Although not yet at war, the US was secretly providing training for British airmen. Halliday was shipped to Canada and then to the US naval air station at Grosse Ile, near Detroit, followed by highly intensive flying training at Pensacola, Florida, where he obtained his “wings” after 300 hours solo. The American award featured a smart parade and the issue of a diploma. Later the RN's liaison officer called and issued the Fleet Air Arm's coveted braid wings to each graduate from a large Oxo tin. “Typical British understatement,” he thought.

Pearl Harbor enabled the British at last to wear uniform. Halliday was appointed to a squadron of Grumman Avengers, a sturdy US-designed carrier-borne bomber, and joined the escort carrier Chaser in the Gulf of Mexico. At that time, Henry Kaiser's shipyards on the US Pacific Coast were launching one complete escort carrier a week.

Three months of anti-submarine patrols in the Atlantic were followed by deployment to the Royal Naval Air Station HMS Sparrowhawk at Hatston in Orkney, as a guard against the escape of German heavy warships from Norway into the convoy routes.

Halliday's squadron was then embarked in the large carrier Illustrious, which arrived in Ceylon (Sri Lanka) in January 1944. It thereafter carried out bombing raids on Japanese installations in Java and Sumatra, as well as operations in support of General Slim's 14th Army in Burma.

Halliday had transferred to the Victorious by January 24, 1945, the day of the largest raid carried out by the Fleet Air Arm, on oil refineries at Palembang in Sumatra, which were bombed by aircraft from four large carriers. During the raid Halliday's Avenger was shot up by a Japanese Zero fighter, and after a hair-raising flight, on fire, over mountainous jungle he ditched in the Java Sea and was picked up in his dinghy by the destroyer Whelp. The destroyer's efficient second-in-command was Prince Philip, who lent him a dry uniform and accompanied him on a “run ashore” in Western Australia.

Returning to Victorious, Halliday found that his cabin mate had been shot down and was a PoW. He was one of nine British naval aircrew who were paraded in Changi Prison, Singapore, two days after VJ Day and beheaded, to Halliday's great distress.

In the meantime, Halliday had continued in Victorious, taking part in raids on Formosa (Taiwan), the Ryuku islands and finally the Japanese mainland. Soon after the Hiroshima and Nagasaki atom bombs ended the war, he was shipped home in the troopship Rangitiki, having been awarded two mentions in dispatches and the DSC for his gallantry and skill.

He took up the offer of a permanent RN commission and was appointed as a test pilot to the experimental establishment at Boscombe Down, where an exciting tour alongside such aviation heroes as Neville Duke (obituary, April 16, 2007) and Mike Lithgow meant that he flew the newest types of jet aircraft.

He next commanded 813 Squadron, flying the powerful but rather unsuccessful turboprop Westland Wyvern off the carrier Eagle. In 1958 he was selected for the army staff course at Camberley, “a very broadening experience”. In 1959, after a short tour as second in command of the minesweeper base in Southampton Water, he found himself again in the Far East in command of a squadron of minesweepers that swept a number of Japanese minefields but were principally engaged in anti-piracy patrols in the Celebes Sea. “If caught, they were trussed up and landed for trial at Sandakan in North Borneo. If found guilty, they were usually hanged.”

After two years in the Admiralty as the deputy to the chief of naval information, Halliday joined the commando carrier Albion as second in command and in charge of air operations, before which he had learnt to fly helicopters. Albion had an energetic commission. From 1963 President Sukarno of Indonesia's opposition to the new Federation of Malaysia resulted in a campaign of subversion and infiltration in Sarawak and Sabah, which required an extensive military response for several years, involving a third of the entire British fleet. Albion's helicopters were used to land and support British and Gurkha troops in the jungle. Afterwards, based at Aden, Albion also used her helicopters to fight dissident tribesmen opposing the British-backed rulers and provided mobility for South Arabian Federation forces.

In 1966 Halliday was appointed Director of Naval Air Warfare in the Admiralty, where he was involved in the famous arguments about whether to build another large aircraft carrier, a decision that carried with it the future of naval fixed-wing aviation. He admired Defence Minister Denis Healey's “complete grasp of all the factors involved and his fairness of judgment”, and was not surprised at the unpalatable outcome — the carrier CVA01, as it was known, was just too expensive.

Two further tours at sea followed. He commanded the frigate Euryalus and a frigate squadron in the Far East and in the Home Fleet. His departure from Singapore in May 1971 was the end of a permanently based escort squadron in the Far East. As a commodore, Halliday was, with a Royal Marines brigadier, in command of all British naval amphibious shipping and forces, carrying out exercise landings in the Caribbean, northern Norway and Turkish Thrace. On occasions he would have up to 24 big Nato warships under his command.

From 1973 to 1981 Halliday was part of the defence intelligence network, initially as Director of Naval Intelligence in the Ministry of Defence. His tour in Washington as head of the British naval mission and naval attaché had a high intelligence content — unlike the other two services the naval staff was based in the Pentagon itself.

On return to the UK in 1978 he was promoted to vice-admiral and appointed Deputy Chief of Defence Staff

(Intelligence), in charge of the intelligence function of all three services. He was appointed KBE in 1980 and, as a mark of his undoubted acumen and his sound judgment about Cold War issues, was, unusually, continued in the quasi-civilian post of Director-General (Intelligence) as an under-secretary of state for a further three years, finally retiring in 1984. This period included the Falklands conflict.

Shrewd and noted for his humane leadership style, he was chairman of trustees of the Burma Star Association and chairman of the British Military Power Boat Trust, which restores and preserves boats of historical interest.

He is survived by his wife, Dorothy Meech, always known as Polly, whom he married in 1945.

Vice-Admiral Sir Roy Halliday, KBE, DSC, Director-General of Intelligence, Ministry of Defence, 1981-84, was born on June 27, 1923. He died on November 23, 2007, aged 84

courtesy;: Times-online


Pioneer - Forum Moderator

Posted By: Pioneer
Date Posted: 04 January 2008 at 11:29pm

Mr Ronald Arthur Henderson.


It was with great sadness that I heard of the ‘Crossing over the Bar’ of former A/B (Asdic) Ron Henderson, who passed away on Christmas Day 2007.


A member of the Coastal Forces Veterans Association (3291), this well loved gentleman was justly proud of serving his country during those dark days of the Mediterranean War and the memory of this honoured gentle person will be kept alive by his family and all those who really knew him.


He served in the Mediterranean during the years 1942 – 1945,

(one of his last ‘ships’ being ML 866 engaged in the dangerous employment of Mine sweeping).

Pioneer - Forum Moderator

Posted By: Pioneer
Date Posted: 15 January 2008 at 4:44pm


Sir John Harvey-Jones

(16 April 19249 January 2008)


John Harvey-Jones joined Dartmouth Naval College as a cadet in 1937 In 1940, as a midshipman at the age of sixteen, he joined HMS Diomede.

His next two ships that he served on, HMS Ithuriel and HMS Quentin, were both sunk by enemy action. Harvey-Jones then went on to join the submarine service and received his first command at the age of 24.

At the end of World War II, John Harvey-Jones went to Cambridge University  to study Russian and within six months had joined Naval Intelligence as an interpreter. He went on to commanded the Russian intelligence section (under the guise of the "British Baltic Fishery Protection Service") which at one time used the two ex-German Schnellboot’s, S130 and S203, for gathering clandestine intelligence on the Soviet Baltic Fleet.

Rising to the rank of Lieutenant-Commander, Harvey-Jones was awarded the MBE in 1952 for his work in Naval Intelligence.

He became well known as an industrialist through his unique Chairmanship of ICI, and he then went on to ‘front’ the BBC's Troubleshooter series, first broadcast in 1990. This made Harvey-Jones, according to one newspaper, the most famous industrialist since Isambard Kingdom Brunel.

He married Mary Bignell in 1947

Having lived most of his post-retirement period in Hay-on-Wye, he died in his sleep after a long illness, aged 83, at the Hereford County Hospital.


Pioneer - Forum Moderator

Posted By: Pioneer
Date Posted: 21 January 2008 at 8:27pm

Seaman 1st Class James J Carter USN.

(March 24th 1927 –December 23rd 2007)

Mr James Justus Carter, of Riverside , CA USA passed away on December 23, 2007. He was born in Long Beach, CA USA on March 14, 1927 to James Adam Carter and Katherine Miller Carter. Mr Carter attended various schools in Long Beach as a youngster. His father passed away in 1937 and Mr Carter began his work career selling newspapers. Later on, he worked for McDonald-Douglas Aircraft in 1942 while still in high school. Mr Carter joined the Naval Armed Guard in March 1944, after his 17th birthday. After boot camp, Mr Carter went to Signalman School and was sent aboard a tanker ship to the Aleutian Islands. Later on in 1944, Mr Carter transferred to a hospital ship and went to Leyte, Philippines in October of that year. The year 1945 found Mr Carter at Okinawa during the Battle. His ship was damaged during the fighting, and subsequently was towed all the way across the Pacific. The damaged ship arrived via the Panama Canal to New Orleans , LA USA in early August. The crew was then granted 30-days Liberty. Mr Carter went on the train to Los Angeles, a three day ride of non-stop poker playing . When Mr Carter arrived in Los Angeles, he found the town quiet. Asking someone what happened, the person replied: "Did you not hear yet ? The War is over!" After Liberty, Mr Carter shipped on the hospital ship Bountiful, which was bound for Japan . The ship arrived at Yokosuku Bay in late December 1945. Finally, after another voyage to the Philippines, Mr Carter was discharged in March 1946 as a Seaman First Class.
After the War, Mr Carter worked for various companies as a swimming pool contractor, installing tousands of pools over a ten year period. Sometime in 1957, Mr Carter married his first wife Martha. That marriage lasted until Martha's death in February 1987. Mr Carter began a 30 year career in termite pest control. He was fortunate to have met a lot of movie stars that way. Mr Carter's encounter with Groucho Marx was a classic !  After Martha Carter passed away, Mr Carter met Charito Alter in March 1988 who had just arrived from
Cebu ,Philippines in March 1988.  Over the years, Charito and Mr Carter became best friends. They shared a lot of times together.
Mr Carter was the best man at Charito's marriage to Jonathan Alter in July 1996 in
Long Beach. All three of them went together to lots of places, with lots of laugher and fun for all.  Mr Carter had a fondness for dogs, indeed. After the move to Riverside in 2002, Mr Carter could be seen walking various family dogs down to the local donut shop. Mr Carter became a fixture at the shop, taking daily walks, indulging in donuts and coffee. Oh, how he loved his coffee!  You could hear him talking about football, baseball, basketball - he had his favourite teams. In March 2005, Mr Carter married for the second time. In death, he leaves behind a widow, Suzette To-ong Carter.
Mr Carter was buried at Riverside National Cemetery , laid to rest with full military honours.
He is and will always be missed by all.

Pioneer - Forum Moderator

Posted By: Pioneer
Date Posted: 23 February 2008 at 7:11pm

Petty Officer Motor Mechanic. Howard Spencer.



6th January 1926 – 13th February 2008

This quiet and gentle person was a loyal member (2911) of the Coastal Forces Veterans Association (London Branch) and will be sadly missed by all who knew him, and especially by his two children, Paul and Sandra.

He had a very eventful life. His wartime and particularly his later service in the Mediterranean can only be briefly described here, but certainly recognised as being quite exceptional.

He was born in Killamarsh Derbyshire on 6th January 1926. He joined the Royal Navy in 1943 and did his initial training at HMS Royal Arthur Skegness (the old Butlin’s Holiday Camp) then, after finishing his initial training, went to RNB Portsmouth. He started active service as a Petty Officer on Minesweepers in the Baltic and around Iceland; He served on board HMS Indomitable but later transferred to Coastal Forces and onto ML’s in the Mediterranean.

He passed a selection board (Naval and Police) in May 1946 and was seconded for 6 months by the Royal Navy to the Libyan Police Force - Port and Marine Division, assisting with the setting up of a Lybian Naval Coastal Force, using craft from the RN.

He was ‘demobbed’ in Malta, and then returned to Tripoli to take up a permanent position with the Marine Division of the Tripolitanian Police Force (assigned by the Foreign Office in London).

He met his future wife Valerie Arnell who had been driving ambulances with the ATS in Libya and Egypt and they were married in Tripoli on 12th June 1948.

Their two children, Sandra and Paul, were born in Tripoli and the family finally came home to England in 1957 (after Libya being given its independence as a British Protectorate).

In England, Howard worked for EMI Electronics - Weapons Division - until he retired.

In latter years he became blind through macular degeneration and also deaf, however this didn't defeat him and he remained a very independent and self sufficient person to the end.

He will be remembered not only as a very brave and stoic gentleman, but also a kind, warm, and gentle person of the ‘Old School’. 

He will be greatly missed.

Pioneer - Forum Moderator

Posted By: Pioneer
Date Posted: 14 May 2008 at 10:13pm


An appreciation for the life of

George Alfred Heard

 1925 - 2008.


It was with great sadness that the news of ‘passing into calmer waters’ by George was received by the London Branch (of the former CFVA). Although unable to attend recent meetings he remained a loyal member (1212) and will be sadly missed.


The eventful life of George Heard began on the 14th March 1925 in Bermondsey, South London.


Leaving school aged just 14, he began his early working life with several employment positions, including one working as a Page Boy for the Daily Mirror in Fleet Street, London.


The beginning of the Second World War found George working for a construction company driving dump trucks and bulldozers building the military camps that were required for the War effort. On reaching the age of 18 he volunteered for the Royal Navy and was called to ‘muster’ on 17th June 1943.


Allocated to the Port Division of Chatham and given the service number of c/kx 528532, he was placed in the Engineering Branch, becoming enrolled as Stoker 2nd Class.


His records show that he served on MGB 16 between 13th and 26th September 1943, joining MTB 723 on 2nd June 1944 and becoming Stoker Mechanic 1st class (17th June 1944). This vessel is recorded in several publications as being heavily involved in actions during the time that George was aboard.


Finally, after joining MTB 5009 on 22nd January 1945, his naval career came to an end when he was ‘demobbed’ on the 1st January 1947.


Returning to civilian life he found employment as a gas fitter for the South Eastern Gas Board at their ‘Phoenix Wharf’ works at Greenwich, London. He continued to work for the SEGB (later British Gas), retiring after 41 years of continued and loyal employment in 1989.


He had met his wife Doris Church during the War, through an introduction by his Uncle who worked with Doris in the Woolwich Arsenal. They were married on the 26th December 1948.


George will be sadly missed by all those who knew him, especially Doris and their three children – Trevor, Kieron and Ramon.


This gentle gentleman will be remembered also as having served his country well through the darkest of hours.


“Lest we Forget”



Pioneer - Forum Moderator

Posted By: Pioneer
Date Posted: 17 May 2008 at 9:13am
Lt Cdr William Nelson Ridinger USN.

1921 – 2008.

Nelson Ridinger, 87, of Christiansburg passed away peacefully in his sleep, surrounded by loved ones on Wednesday, April 9, 2008.

He was the son of Harvey Jackson Ridinger Sr. and Hester Blanche Jennings. In addition to his first wife, Elizabeth Anne Dale, and his oldest daughter Linda Ridinger Smith, Nelson is survived by his loving wife of 35 years, Sandra Sarver Ridinger.


Nelson graduated from Christiansburg High School in 1938. He proceeded to get his degree in Pharmacy from the Medical College of Virginia in 1942.

Nelson answered the call to serve his country in WWII by attending an accelerated officer-training program at Columbia University.

He rose to the rank of Lieutenant Commander in the US Navy and was assigned to the Admiral's command ship for the Utah Beach Sector during the D-Day invasion. Nelson's military honors include medals for the European Campaign and two battle stars.


Nelson returned to Christiansburg in 1949 to raise his family and become an active member of the local business community. He began work at Thompson-Hagan Drug Store as a pharmacist in 1949 and retired as the owner of the oldest continuous business in Montgomery County in 1979.

Nelson was an active business partner in Town & Country Estates, Arcnel Corporation, and owner of Ridgedale Farms real-estate development.


Over the years, Nelson also served in numerous community leadership roles. Nelson was President of the Christiansburg Chamber of Commerce and was Chairman of St. Paul's Administrative Board, the local library board and Red Cross of America. He worked to get the Altamont Hospital on Radford Road incorporated into the Montgomery Regional Hospital and served on its board as a named trustee of the hospital.

Nelson faithfully served 41 years as a Director of First National Bank (FNB) in Christiansburg and served as its Chairman of the Board before retiring in 1998.


Nelson enjoyed spending time with his beloved family - Nelson also had a love for horses and spending time outdoors on his farm in Christiansburg.


He will be greatly missed by all.


The Funeral services were conducted at 11 a.m., Saturday, April 12, 2008, at St. Paul United Methodist Church with Dr. David Goodpasture and Rev. Brian Siegle officiating.

Interment followed at Sunset Cemetery, Christiansburg,VA.


The family wishes to express special thanks to Dr. Michael Payne for his care and concern during this time.



Pioneer - Forum Moderator

Posted By: Pioneer
Date Posted: 10 November 2008 at 2:11pm

An Appreciation for the Life of

Peter Henry DSM..


Peter Henry DSM, of Seaham, County Durham died Sunday 26th October at Sunderland Royal Hospital aged 85. Beloved Husband of Freda and cherished by all the family. Peter served with Honour in the Coastal forces during World War 2 and was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal.

All through his life he was passionate about pigeon racing and was known as part of 'Gippert and Henry'.

Everyone is welcome at a service which will be held at
2pm on Thursday 30th October, prior to a cremation at Sunderland crematorium at 3pm. A wake will be held at The Phoenix, Seaham at 3.45pm.

Flowers welcome or a donation to the Coastal Forces Veterans Association if desired.


“Lest we Forget”


Pioneer - Forum Moderator

Posted By: Pioneer
Date Posted: 10 November 2008 at 2:18pm

Ldg Wren Brenda Coombs


We send our deepest sympathy to Alison and Sister Pat and Family at this sad time with the cherished memories we hold of a very sincere friend and shipmate.


It was at Lowestoft HMS Mantis where Brenda met the love of her life, no doubt in a run ashore when Charles Coombs, serving on board MTB’s  88-222 & 602 came into her life and romance bloomed. They married in Lowestoft on 25th May 1945.


Both Charles and Brenda were great enthusiasts of the CFVA from its early beginnings with its vast opportunities for the renewing and the making of new friendships . With their Daughter Alison they were great supporters of, and took part in many of, our visits to Croatia and the Island of Vis . Since the death of Charles in June 2001  Brenda and Alison have continued to support and enjoy the visits to Vis , sadly this year due to Brenda being unwell and the death of her daughter Janet  in August

they had to cancel.


Brenda’s funeral will be at Cambridge Crematorium on November 14th at 13-30hrs.

"Lest We Forget"

Pioneer - Forum Moderator

Posted By: Pioneer
Date Posted: 19 January 2009 at 11:09pm

Harry Leader DSM.

26th April 1923 – 28th December 2008.


The news that Harry Leader had ‘Crossed the Bar’ and now rests in calmer waters was received with a great sadness.

There will always be very warm memories of Harry; ‘our’ last meeting with him being at the September Branch Meeting of the London Branch of the former CFVA - onboard HMS Belfast in the Pool of London. Then, having only very recently been discharged from Hospital, he had appeared to be his old self, even after quite a prolonged stay; but true to his character he did not disclose any details of his suffering or illness.


Harry will certainly be missed by all those who knew him – especially those members of the London Branch Committee – who sometimes were the butt of many ribald comments emitting from the irreverently titled “Stokers Mess”. He, being an active and leading member of this group, had the ability and wit of always being able to find a quick and humorous remark - for whatever was being discussed at the time - sometimes raising a smile from his selected ‘target’ - but his banter was always made without malice.

His broad cockney accent assisted his particular brand of charm, this also added to an ability to display a very warm nature and great love of being among those whom he called his ‘Shipmates’.


Although being a fully paid up and active member of ‘our Stoker’s Mess’, Harry was not a member of the Engineering Branch of the RN. He had ended his naval career as an A/B Seaman but having been awarded the Distinguished Service Medal.


Harry was one of only 10 survivors when MTB 622 was lost off the coast of Holland on the night of March 9th/10th 1943.

Severely injured, he was rescued by the crew of the German naval craft VP 1300, spending many months in Dutch and German hospitals before being incarcerated in a POW camp deep in Germany. Still suffering from his wounds he, with three others, decided to try and escape from the camp after hearing of a proposed forced march of the inmates, even deeper into Germany.


After several hair-raising ‘incidents’ they managed to reach the advancing Allied army. Harry was to feel the generosity of the American troops for a number of weeks before eventually being repatriated back to the UK.


Harry thoroughly enjoyed the friendly banter between ‘Home Waters’ and ‘Mediterranean War Theatre’ crews – both fully represented at the London Branch meetings.

For many, Harry will be remembered as a true friend, but also it should be remembered that he stands among the ranks of this country’s heroes.


He will be sadly missed by his beloved wife Gwen, his son-in-law, grandchildren and great-grandson Harry.



Lest We Forget.


Pioneer - Forum Moderator

Posted By: Pioneer
Date Posted: 19 March 2010 at 1:37pm

Andrew Banger DSM, MID.

Born 31st May 1922 Died 29th January 2010


Andrew Banger was born in Stirling Scotland, he had three brothers and one sister. His Mother worked in catering and his Father was a Chauffer.

Andrew moved to England with his family at 6 years old and started his education. On leaving school he became an apprentice plumber, on completing his apprenticeship

Andrew volunteered to join the Royal Navy.

He was based at Felixstowe and served on MTB’s (MTB454).

During his service Andrew was awarded The Distinguished Service Medal and was also Mentioned in Dispatches.

Andrew was demobbed in 1946, he then moved with his wife Joyce to Slough in Berkshire. He worked as an engineer at various establishments. During his career Andrew worked at Pinewood Studios building the sets for various films including James Bond and Super Man.

After retirement Andrew maintained an active life, he loved holidaying in Scotland. His main activity was to build a replica model of his boat MTB 454; this was built from drawings and historical photos. He installed engines and made it radio controlled, the model spent many hours on the water.


Andrew was a very proud member of The Coastal Forces Veterans Association, he enjoyed attending meeting and AGM’s. He loved his time with the association and his shipmates. He is greatly missed by his family and friends.

Able Seaman Andrew Rae Ronney Banger DSM, MID.


Lest We Forget.

Pioneer - Forum Moderator

Posted By: Pioneer
Date Posted: 23 June 2010 at 7:06pm

Ldg Seaman (Torps) Peter Henry Shorer

Peter volunteered for the Navy at 18 but failed the medical; he had had rheumatic fever twice as a child which had left him with a heart condition. Six months later however, he got his call up papers. A heart specialist at this medical declared him fit and he joined the Royal Navy on 7th September 1942.


Reporting to the shore base HMS Ganges, at Shotley Suffolk, for his initial induction and basic training, following which he was then to spend a month at HMS St Christopher, Fort William Invernes-shire, learning how to work on Coastal Forces Craft, MLs & MTBs etc; this was the real attraction for him, and why he had volunteered in the first place.


His first Draft was to ML 212 at Holyhead in the Western Approaches, patrolling round the Irish Sea searching for mines, in one day they sank thirteen mines by shooting at them with 303 rifles.


After taking the Seaman Torpedoman’s (S/T) Course at the Eastbourne Girls School ‘Roedean’ - requisitioned as an annex to the Mine warfare and Torpedo training establishment, HMS Vernon at Portsmouth - he was to be Drafted into the Mediterranean war theatre where he served in and around Malta and the Aegean Sea areas with the 10th and 27th MGB/MTB Flotillas.

As an A/B S/T Seaman, one of his jobs was to get inside the twenty foot long torpedo tubes to clean and grease them after use. The records show that his Flotilla’s had a very active war; shortly after VE Day the Flotilla’s 10th/27th were paid off, including his much loved MTB 398.


He passed further examinations on the County Class Cruiser, HMS Norfolk, to become Leading Seaman Torpedoman (L/St) joining the Destroyer HMS Javelin. Because of his small-boat experience he became coxwain of the Captains Motor boat.

He was finally demobbed in June 1946.


Peter’s time in the navy gave him a love of the sea and boats of any kind. He and his wife Audrey spent many happy times crewing on a gaff rigged Cutter to Holland. He built a Heron class dinghy to sail at Burnham on Crouch and when the children came along he built canoes and a fully equipped narrow boat to explore the English canals.


His enthusiasm for a challenge eventually led to a very successful peace time career and also allows another proud achievment of Peter’s to be seen.

On display in the Malta Maritime Museum is the reproduction of the ship’s bell from HMS Illustrious. This perfect reproduction, including its damage sustained on the ship during WW2, tested his skills developed during his employment with the British Museum. The bell was presented to the Duke of Edinburgh in 1976, presented to Malta 1977, the original previously on display, being requested by the IWM.


Peter enjoyed the companionship of his shipmates at the Southend Branch of the Coastal Forces Veterans Association and later as a member of the London Branch aboard HMS Belfast, where he could relive the happy, sad and dangerous times in ‘his war’.

“Lest We Forget”

Pioneer - Forum Moderator

Posted By: Pioneer
Date Posted: 31 July 2010 at 4:39pm
A/B Donald Campbell

6th October 1923 – 20th July 2010


It is with a great sadness that we record the death of Donald Campbell.


Donald was one of the early joiners of the CFVA, he came aboard in February 1982 and carried the membership (CFVA) number 869. He was a popular member of the London Branch becoming Secretary of the Branch from January 1989 - December 1994. 

His wartime service in the Mediterranean was as an A/B on MTBs 388 - 5009 and also with a Coastal Forces Mobile Base in Italy inc Sardinia and Maddalena .


In peacetime Donald became a very keen supporter of West Ham United so we could always expect a good repartee at the London Meetings with the Spurs and Orient supporters.


Donald retired from the Ford motor company at Dagenham having been employed as a maintenance electrician.

Sadly Donald was to spend his last years in a Nursing Home suffering from a cruel and debilitating illness.


To his Wife Iris we send our Deepest Sympathy and our Love at this very sad time.


“Lest We Forget”

Pioneer - Forum Moderator

Posted By: Pioneer
Date Posted: 09 January 2011 at 7:14pm

A/B Ronald Mitchell.

August 30th 1925 – December 29th 2010.


A/B Ron Mitchell, a qualified Wireless Operator of the Royal Navy, served with HM Coastal Forces during World War 2.

Drafted to RML 542, the main area of operations for him were to be in and around the seas of Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly

Always a west countryman at heart, being born in Sherborne Dorset, Ron sadly passed away in the St. Austell Community Hospital on 29th December 2010, aged 85

With a membership number of 1956, he was a Life Member of the Coastal Forces Veterans Association (CFVA). He had spent the last 13 years of his life living in Cornwall and would regularly drive to the coast, park his car, and in moments of deep thought just look out over the sea

He is sadly missed and is survived by three children, six grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren 

“Lest we Forget”

Pioneer - Forum Moderator

Posted By: Pioneer
Date Posted: 17 April 2013 at 2:30pm

I have received the following notification of the death of John Pritchard. I am sure all members would wish to join me in offering our sincere condolences to the family.

John Pritchard, an ardent researcher into the much neglected world of the RAF Marine Craft units and former member of your organisation passed away at Withybush Hospital on March 21st, aged 86.
Readers may remember his immensely respected RAF Air Sea Rescue launch articles which featured in Model Boats, Yachting Monthly and several other magazines from June 1975 to April 1989 illustrated with photos, accounts of rescues, and invariably accompanied by hand drawn plans. Much of the background information and detail was provided by your club membership.
His plans I believe are still available from Model Boats Plans Service and I have recently seen features about models on the internet acknowledging their usefulness.
We well remember our father with his drawing board perched on the bannister of our then home in Therfield, Hertfordshire as he meticulously draughted his masterpieces, often relying on photos from numerous correspondents to get them just right.
John gained his wings with the RAF but found his services no longer required and kicked his heels briefly in the control tower of Carew Cheriton until that station closed and he was allowed to move to the RAF Marine Craft Units from Sept 1946. Briefly serving at the very overcrowded Gosport MCU (1102) he was then moved onto MCU 1111 at Lyme Regis. Then followed a strange sequence of postings in 1947, as the powers that be, struggled with what to do with this LAC. He travelled variously to Port Fouad, Ishmailia, El Hamra and Fanara (in the Canal Zone) and Ein Shemeir (Palestine- aerial lifeboats!), before returning to Gosport where he was at last allowed to retrain as a Teacher. His links with the RAF continued in the 1960s with a 5 year stint in Takoradi, Ghana as deputy then Headmaster of the Combined Services Primary School teaching children of the Air Force and Naval Training Mission based there. His research into RAF/MC history paralleled the time that he served as Headmaster of the Roger de Clare First School at Standon/Puckeridge in Hertfordshire.1970 -1988.
On retiring he moved to Pembrokeshire, firstly living in Milford Haven then for the last 15 years at Freshwater East .
For any that remember him and may well have corresponded with him our thanks for assisting in his research.
He will be cremated at Narbeth Crematorium on 22nd April.
Family flowers only. Any donations if desired to Tenby RNLI (where his involvement with boats first started).
Yours sincerely,
On behalf of the whole family,
Bob Pritchard.

“Lest we Forget”

Pioneer - Forum Moderator

Posted By: Pioneer
Date Posted: 23 April 2013 at 8:28am

Leonard C Reynolds. OBE,DSC,DC,JP.

29th June 1923 – 18th April 2013
Details of Funeral Arrangements can be viewed on the - Veterans Web Site
"Lest we Forget"

Pioneer - Forum Moderator

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