Saturday, June 06, 2020

Len was born in the small village of Ruan Minor, on the far southern Lizard Peninsular of Cornwall, in June 1929 and was always intensely proud of his Cornish roots.  He enlisted in the Army Training School (Boys), Arborfield, at the age of 15.  After passing out from the School he was posted to REME and saw service in both Singapore and Egypt.  He eventually became a Sergeant Instructor, then Staff Sergeant (1954), and finally WO2 (1959).  Whilst stationed at one of the Training Battalions in Bordon, Hampshire, he met and married his wife Rita in 1953.  They had three children.  Regrettably, Rita passed away in 2004.

On retiring from the Army, Len worked for the Ford Motor Company, before taking up a post as a lecturer in the Engineering Science Department at what was now the School of Electrical and Mechanical Engineering (SEME) at Bordon.  Always a likeable and approachable man, he taught mathematics and science to all trades at all levels.  His voice, with its fine West-country burr, would often resonate down the corridors of ‘the Kremlin’ (HQ Building) and across the car park when the windows were open in the summer.

Len was a keen supporter of the Arborfield Old Boys’ Association, attending the annual Reunions as long as his health allowed, and he avidly followed the fortunes of Portsmouth Football Club; all this was combined with a fondness for gardening, red wine, horse racing and whist.  Following a short illness, Len passed away in April 2012.

Pete Gripton, 56B

Notifying Deaths of Ex Arborfield Boys and requests for an AOBA Remembrance Scroll

Reporting Deaths

In the event of an ex Arborfield Old Boys death it would be most helpful if members could report as much of the following information to the Bereavement Officer or to any AOBA Committee member: The full name of the deceased, his intake number and date of death. Also the full name and address of the next of kin (n-o-k) of the deceased. Normally who ever reports the death is a friend or is known to the family and it is better that they negotiate on our behalf, with the n-o-k or family, not myself or committee members to obtain all the necessary information.

Note: After some drumhead services a few members mentioned that some deaths were not read out and no crosses were planted for them. Majority of the names mentioned were found to be from the previous year and were recorded, a small number were not. The reason why we miss some is because we have not been informed or we have insufficient information to record the death. Members are reminded to report deaths as and when they are aware of them. If you know of an ex Arborfield boy who has passed away and is not listed in the AOBA Roll of Honour (Can be seen on the AOBA Website) then please let me have their details.

A request for an AOBA Remembrance Scroll

I would like to remind members that I do not automatically send out a Remembrance Scroll when I’m notified of a death.  I only send them when requested by whoever has made contact with the family of the deceased and only then when the n-o-k has confirmed that they would like to receive one.  Remembrance Scrolls can be requested in the memory of the deceased for both AOBA members and non members. The minimum information required, before a scroll is sent, is listed in sub paragraphs a. & b. below:

a. Full name of the deceased, his intake number and date of death.

b. The n-o-k or family member’s full name, ensuring that we have their first name, and the address to where the scroll should be sent.

c. If a member of the AOBA his membership number, if available.

When it has been confirmed that the n-o-k of the deceased has requested a Remembrance Scroll, I will only send one if I have all the detail as listed in sub paragraphs a. & b. above. I will not send a scroll until I’m in receipt of all this detail. As you can imagine, if we get any of this detail wrong, it could cause extra grief to the bereaved.

You can contact me through the completion of the short webform found here