Only some of you will have met, but many will have heard me talk about, my dear friend Pat Payton. He died a couple of weeks ago at the age of 97 years.
He worked with Tom at Jordan’s in Biggleswade and they would often ‘gang up’ together to get issues through the Board meetings. Pat was always active – working with Bill & David Jordan and playing cricket and tennis at Jordan’s into his 90s.
He was extremely upset when Tom died and helped me a great deal through that difficult period. He would come with me each March to Southwold to remember Tom, polish his plaque on the pier – calling him an ‘old bugger’ as he did so – & have fish and chips with a pint of Adnam’s beer for lunch. It’s only in the last 3 years or so that he was unable to come as his health was failing and he moved down to Rye to be close to his family.
In 2011 he joined me on Misty Morning in France for a week and I had great difficulty stopping him going up ladders in the locks. He did not like it that I was concerned for his safety. I was not impressed when a french ‘gentleman’ asked me why the Captain was driving the boat – or my husband (ie Pat sitting up the front holding the rope) when I explained politely that I was the Captain! We enjoyed the opening of the port at Auxonne with Sue & John Parker on the Aryani and the crazy jazz band!
Adrian and I managed to do a day trip from Belgium to Hastings to attend Pat’s funeral. It was good to put faces to some of the people I have heard about from Pat over the years. It seems that many others knew of me and Adrian too – referred to as ‘Jenny with the boat’!
I shall miss Pat.