John was born in Sheringham on the Norfolk coast in the summer of 1921. The family had moved to Bury St. Edmunds in Suffolk by the time John was eight years old. John had started his lifetime hobby of fishing by this time, making his first catch in an unusual cliff-top pond in Sheringham.
With his brother, he would cycle miles, camping out at weekends just to spend time fishing. It was also at about this time that John started his second lifelong passion – Scouting. At the outbreak of WW.1I, John joined the Territorial Army and was posted to a searchlight unit in Plymouth. Within the year he was transferred to the Commandos, volunteering to become one of the first members of the SAS – parachuting behind enemy lines on more than one occasion. After demob, John moved to Hayes and spent much of his working life with EMI and Nestles until retirement.
Throughout his time in Hayes, his involvement in Scouting grew. John was Scout Leader at 2nd Harlington before taking up the role of GSL from 1956 until 1986, and was an Instructor with the Group’s Beaver Scout Colony. He was appointed County Angling Advisor in 1985.
For his Services to Scouting John was awarded the Silver Acorn in 1990 and the Bar to the Silver Acorn in 1999. John was also awarded the Long Service Decoration in 1977, the Bar to the Long Service Decoration in 1992, and for over 40 years service the Chief Scout’s Long Service Decoration in 2007. He was a founder member of Hayes and Harlington’s Scout Fellowship and eventually relinquishing his appointment of Chairman, became President, a task he undertook until his death.