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