Harry Paterson…

This obituary is taken from the tribute given by Derek Paterson on behalf of the Paterson family at Harry’s funeral and Scouting records.

Harry Paterson was big; physically big and big-hearted. He had hands like dinner plates with a strong grip. He was sure of himself and his abilities and readily accepted challenges. At Harrow County School he played Rugby and, after leaving school, he trained as a P.E. teacher at Culham College, Oxford. This was interrupted by National Service in the Royal Horse Artillery where he served abroad.

He married in 1950 and they had two sons Derek and Martin. Like many military families, they moved house several times but he remained a proud “Harrow Lad” and had a second career for 20 years in the Harrow Council Housing Department. He was a prominent member of the church of All Saints Harrow Weald, the Old Gaytonians, the Harrow Working Mens Club, the Harrow British Legion and various Masonic Lodges. After his wife died in 1989 he was married again to Beryl who sadly died within three years. He then married Iris to whom he was married for 20 years until she also sadly died in 2015. When he retired he took up gardening particularly loving his roses.

When the boys joined the Cubs he became a parent helper, then a uniformed leader and gave service to Scouting over a 50 year period including service in Hong Kong, Cub Scout Leader and Venture Scout Leader in Wiltshire (October 1961 to September 1964) and Group Scout Leader and Assistant District Commissioner in Pembrokeshire (October 1964 to July 1969).

He is remembered in this County as GSL of 1st Harrow Weald (June 1971 to March 1973), Assistant District Commissioner Leader Training, Assistant District Commissioner Scouts, then District Commissioner and later District Chairman of the former Kenton and Kingsbury District (1970 to January 2001), Group Scout Leader of 13th/21st Harrow (April 1983 to March 1986), Chairman of Stanmore District incorporating Kenton and Kingsbury District (January 2001 to July 2012), member of the District Executive Committee (from July 2012) and Badge Secretary (from February 2013).

He loved the enthusiasm of young people and in particular their international activities, arranging European expeditions with Brian Jones. He was generous with his time and supported many good causes of which his favourite was the Blind Veterans Charity.

For his service to Scouting, Harry was awarded the Medal of Merit in January 1978 and the Silver Acorn on 23 April 2002. He received the Chief Scout’s 40 years service award in 2010.