Peter Brian Stubbs. CPM
 

This “Hall of Fame” article is a tribute to retired Chief Inspector Peter Stubbs CPM, who served in the Bermuda Police from 1957 – 1981. Sadly, Peter passed away on 31st January 2019 His funeral was held at Christ Church, Warwick, on 12th February 2019, attended by his family, many friends, and former colleagues from the Bermuda Police,  the Broad Arrow Masonic Lodge No 1890, and the Bermuda Senior Golfers Association. The Bermuda Police provide a motor cycle escort to the church. This Tribute includes an excellent Eulogy delivered at the funeral by retired Chief Inspector Bill Butterworth. 

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Chances are that anyone who served in the Bermuda Police through the 1960’s and 1970’s will have worked with or been involved in some way with Peter Stubbs, whether it was as a fellow constable, as your driving instructor or examiner, your supervisory officer, as a fellow sportsman playing darts, snooker, rugby, cricket, squash - or poker, or as a friend and colleague. Peter was one of those characters who, once known, was never forgotten.

Young Peter with ball in hand
 

Peter was born in Manchester and raised in Blackburn, Lancashire. He joined the Royal Military Police (RMP) in October 1953 and completed his 2 years National Service in Hong Kong with 40th Division Provost Company stationed in Kowloon on the mainland which covered the New Territories.

By coincidence, another future Bermuda policeman was posted to 40th Division Provost Company in Kowloon shortly after Peter returned to the UK. That was Keith Lovell who heard about Peter when he arrived in Kowloon, and the two met for the first time in the Police barracks at Prospect.

Sometime after returning to England, Peter applied for and was successful in being accepted in to the Bermuda Police, arriving on Island on 22nd February 1957 along with Taffy Alder and Sean Sheehan, and they were joined two weeks later by young P.C. George Goddard.

Perhaps partly as a result of his military training Peter was always very smartly turned out and was both highly disciplined and professional in everything he tackled – although in his sporting endeavours he was known to get “rather hot under the collar” from time to time!

P.C. Peter Stubbs on his Triumph motor cycle
 

Peter was destined not to spend much time on the beat in Hamilton because just 3 months after putting on his police uniform he was transferred to Traffic and very quickly qualified as a Driving Instructor. He was not only an excellent driver but was also an avid motor cyclist having performed duties as a dispatch rider while in Hong Kong – a skill that was soon to prove most useful.

P.C. Peter Stubbs at far right with his motor cycle #4458
during inspection being held at the Police Traffic Department
 

If any proof of Peter’s driving ability was needed it is notable that he received no less than three commendations between 1959 and 1962, the first in May 1959 for his driving skills in apprehending a man for dangerous driving (for which he was rewarded with £5), in February 1960 for the successful conviction of another man for driving in a manner dangerous to the public, and in January 1962 for his “outstanding driving” which resulted in a third man being convicted of dangerous driving.

Prior to 1961, the police were occasionally called upon to provide official motor cycle escorts, and then Chief Supt Frank Williams was keen to provide the very best police motor cyclists for the job. Major-General Sir Julian Gascoigne was the then Governor and he was known to be a stickler for punctuality when attending official functions. The stars must have been perfectly aligned for young P.C. Peter Stubbs because he was not only a first-class motor cyclist, he was also a stickler for being on time!

In his History of the Police Motor Cycle Display Team (which can be viewed at http://expobermuda.com/index.php/lia/25-bike-history) George Goddard describes how Frank Williams had received a training programme used by the London Metropolitan Police Motorcycle Precision Riding Team, almost identical to the one used by the famed British Army Royal Corps of Signals Motorcycle Display Team, and he proposed a volunteer Police Motor Cycle Display team of eight members with two reserves. Commissioner George Robins fully supported the proposal and early in 1961 training of the Display Team commenced.

Original members of the Police Motor Cycle Display Team
with Deputy Commissioner Frank B. Williams (standing centre)
(l-r) Ron Woodhouse, Peter Edney, Brian Flook, RCS "Bob" Smith, Wilf Peacock, George Goddard,
Peter Stubbs, Eric Simpson, Freddie Aubrey, Derek Selby (missing - Jim Lyons)
Later members included Harold Moniz, Paul Field, Bill "Connell" McBurnie & "Willy" McCracken.


The original team members comprised Sergeants Edney and Derek Selby, Constables Brian Flook, George Goddard, Jim Lyons, Wilf Peacock, R.C.S ‘Bob’ Smith, and Peter Stubbs. The two reserves were Freddie Aubrey and Ron Woodhouse, and later members were Sergeant Eric Simpson, Constables Tim Burch, Tom Cassin, Lyn Hall and Harold Moniz. All the original team were experienced motorcyclists – such as Tim Burch an ex-Military Police dispatch rider in Malaya and the Canal Zone, and of course Peter having also been a dispatch rider with the RMP, Peter Edney a former Hampshire Constabulary Traffic Patrol officer and former Military Policeman, and Jim Lyons an experienced scrambles rider on his Greeves scrambler.


Peter was no doubt delighted to be a member of our first ever Police Motor Cycle Display Team, but not quite so thrilled was a young lady he was to meet – and marry! Perhaps this brief description of the team's display might help to understand Kate's concerns:-

‘Following a tight training schedule the team progressed from flying cross-overs and jumps and
had perfected trick riding stunts – riding one on a bike, two then three, two on a bike fore
and aft,  one foot, one hand and no teeth and many other tricks which kept spectators in
their seats until they finally circuited the field with the entire team mounted on two bikes!’
 
Look - No hands
(From top to bottom) Peter Stubbs,
Brian Flook and Peter Edney
 
 Peter Edney, Peter Stubbs, Bob Smith & Tom Cassin hard at practice


While the newly formed Police Motor Cycle Display Team were honing their skills, there was a great deal of interest in how to improve road safety in Bermuda, and Commissioner George Robins decided to appoint two young officers, P.C’s George Goddard and Peter Stubbs as Bermuda’s first “Road Safety Officers”.  George and Peter organized an annual “Road Safety Week” and they were also required to visit schools to conduct bicycle safety checks, give road safety talks, create road safety messages to be aired by ZBM radio, and arrange a road safety competition for children. The first ever Road Safety Week was a great success, no doubt due in part to having the newly formed Police Motor Cycle Display Team put on its first public outing.

 
Newly appointed Police Road Safety Officers in action!
P.C's Peter Stubbs (left) and George Goddard (right) examine students pedal cycles
at Whitney Institute under the watchful eye of headmaster, Mr. Stafford Cripps-Brown
 

While working as a Road Safety Officer with George Goddard, Peter occasionally had to visit the Department of Education from time to time to borrow a projector for their road safety talks, and it was there that he met the young lady who became the love of his life – Miss Katharine "Kate" Buchanan.

Bill Butterworth gave a most touching and comprehensive Eulogy at Peter’s funeral during which he describes in detail how romance blossomed between Peter and Kate from those visits to the Department of Education.

Bill’s Eulogy can be found immediately below this article and provides great insight into the life and times of his good friend Peter with details of Peter’s service in the Police Force, his extensive sporting and social activities, and his family and personal life. Rather than repeating Bill’s tribute, here are just a few additional insights regarding Peter’s time in the Bermuda Police.

Peter was promoted to Sergeant in June 1962 at which time he was transferred back to Central Division for a short while as a Watch Sergeant, and a few months later he moved to the newly formed “E” Department, Special Branch, with just four officers, Superintendent McGregor, Ian Morrison, JCP “Jim” Hanlon, and Peter, together with a first class secretary.

Mrs. Diane Donald had recently arrived on Island having previously worked as a secretary for the Metropolitan Police, and she was hired as a secretary at Police Headquarters, with her first task being to help in setting up Special Branch. This was in the days before computers, and Diane says she loved her job in spite of the sweltering non-airconditioned offices! You can read more about Diane’s time with the Police and with Special Branch in our Then and Now column at http://expobermuda.com/index.php/tan/90-dianedonald

Newly promoted Sgt Peter Stubbs discussing the workings of Hamilton
Police Station with His Excellency, The Governor, Lord Mortonmere
with P.C. Alan Coates behind them.
 

Peter returned to Hamilton Police Station for a spell as Watch Sergeant in 1964-1965, and must have been considered to be a ‘”Jack of all trades” because in late 1965 he was appointed as the official Police Press Liaison Officer for a year, then it was back to Special Branch where he was promoted to Inspector.

Bermuda  Police Senior Officers - circa 1967
Top row (l-r) Pete Stubbs, Les Waddell, John Joe Sheehy, Fred Bean, Ian Morrison
Middle row - Tommy Doyle, William "Syke" Smith, Derek Taylor, Dave Parsons, Jim McMaster,
Isabel Lee, John Mullan, Robert "Bob" Ball, Douglas "Red" Hebberd, Alan "Harry" Lister, Leon Bean.
Seated -  Joe Nixon, Frank Williams, COP  George Robins, Oliver Trott,
Leroy "Nobby" Clarke, Frank "Gruff" Hammond.
 

Two years later Peter had a spell as OIC Eastern Division (St. George’s) from 1970 – 1973, where he was very popular and highly thought of by all the Eastern staff. 

Recently promoted Inspector Peter Stubbs attends
the annual Peppercorn Ceremony as OIC Eastern Division,
together with Kate (left) and her friend Jill Mann
 
Eastern Division win Inter-Divisional  Cricket Final - 1971
Captain of Eastern Division Cricket Team, Clayton Carter, being congratulated by
Commissioner George Duckett after winning the final against Western Division 
(l-r) Brian Malpas,  COP George Duckett, Mike Burke, Dave Barber,
Peter Stubbs (OIC Eastern Division), Oliver Bain (Captain of Western Division Team),
Clayton Carter (Captain of Eastern Division Team) , Barry Smith,
Peter Jones, Perry Fox, and Dudley Swan.
 

In 1973 Peter was promoted to Chief Inspector at which time he returned to Special Branch where he worked until his retirement.

Special Branch  - circa 1974
Top row (l-r)  Andy Bermingham, Alistair Reid, Neil Cox, Steve Bond,
Robin Henagulph, George Rushe, John Instone
Middle row -  Bill Butterworth, Steve Petty, Mike Chitty,
Tim Willis, Dave Cann, Barry Smith, Colin Mackenzie
Seated -   Leslie Whittaker(civilian secretary), Peter Stubbs, 
Caroline Strother(civilian secretary), Lenny Edwards, Yvonne Yates, John Graham
 

There are not many police officers who can claim to have sky-rocketed all the way up the promotion ladder from Chief Inspector to Deputy Commissioner in one swoop, but that is precisely what happened to Peter in March 1975 when he and then Superintendent Fred “Penny” Bean were seconded to the Turks and Caicos Islands as the Commissioner and Deputy Commissioner of Police.


This was as a result of the Turks and Caicos Commissioner of Police resigning at very short notice resulting in the British Government urgently needing someone to take charge of the Police Force there until a replacement could be found. “Penny” Bean described how the Islands and the Police Force were “in a state of turmoil”, and there were major challenges with the Police with some suspected of corruption. “Penny” gives an account of the situation in the Turks and Caicos in his “Hall of Fame” article which can be viewed at http://expobermuda.com/index.php/latesthof/712-fred-penny-bean


Fortunately, a replacement Commissioner was recruited quite quickly, and “Penny” and Peter were able to return home to Bermuda a few weeks later to resume their normal duties. They were both subsequently commended by the Governor of the Turks and Caicos for the assistance they provided during their secondment.


Peter decided to retire from the Police Service in 1981 and went on to a second career in security at the Bank of Bermuda where he spent 15 years in charge of physical security, infrastructure, systems and procedures as well as aspects of the Facilities Management.


Throughout his police career Peter was an avid sportsman who played a wide variety of sports including rugby, cricket, squash, darts, snooker and golf. One of his sporting passions was rugby and after he stopped playing he remained very involved in the sport as a linesman and later as Chairman of the Police Rugby Section. 

Peter going for a six!
 
Eastern Division Snooker Team
(l-r) Inspector Peter Stubbs, P.C's  Bob Payne, Ray Lloyd, John Freeborough and Dave Purcell
 
 

Editors note - We are indebted to Bill Butterworth for kindly permitting us to publish the following Eulogy he gave for Peter at his funeral held at Christchurch Warwick, on Tuesday 12th February 2019.

The Boys in Blue!
Two good friends Bill Butterworth and Peter Stubbs supporting
the Police Rugby Team at the annual Duckett Memorial Game - 2015
 
 
Tribute from Bill Butterworth

It is my privilege and honor to stand here today to acknowledge, pay tribute and celebrate the life of Peter Brian Stubbs.

To Kate he was a loving husband … to Jackie and Robert a devoted father and a doting Poppa to … Jackie, Savannah, Donovan, Shane and Adrianna. He will also be sadly missed by daughter- in- law Elisa, …Jackies partner Steve Green …and, nieces Ali and Kate and nephew William.

Our deepest sympathy, condolences and prayers go out to you.

PBS as he was affectionately known to all had a full and active life. A Soldier, a Police Officer, Security Manager and Consultant. In addition he was actively involved with the Masonic community. An all-round sportsman throughout his service he played Darts, Snooker, Rugby, Cricket, Squash, Tennis and Golf. Reminiscences of each of these aspects of his life could fill a book.

Born in Manchester in 1935 his family moved to Blackburn where he spent his childhood and teens.

Young Peter Stubbs
 

At the age of 18 years Compulsory National Service called and Peter joined the Corp of Royal Military Police. The Red Caps. Between 1953 to 1955 he was posted overseas to Hong Kong where during his time in the Army he learned the organisational and administrative skills that held him in good stead throughout the rest of his life.

On returning to Manchester his father had secured employment for him. The job entailed putting permanent pleating into ladies skirts. This was not a career move! And the job combined with the miserable UK weather drove Peter to look further afield and the Bermuda Police beckoned.

Having successfully made application and completing three months basic training at No 4 District Police Training Centre, Mill Meece, in Staffordshire, Peter arrived in Bermuda on Friday 22nd February 1957 in company with constables Sean Sheehan and Taffy Alder - an Englishman, an Irishman and a Welshman. I looked for the Scotsman but he must have missed the plane!

His service between 1957 to 1966 as a Constable and Sergeant covered General Police Duties, Administration, Traffic and Road Safety Officer in Central and the Operations Divisions. He was promoted to Sergeant in 1962 and carried out duties as a Watch and Station Sergeant.

But it was his time during a spell as the Road Safety Officer that was to change the course of his life for the next 55 years. Part of those duties involved the showing of road safety films and the Police were required to share the Movie Projector held at the Department of Education. It was there that he met Katharine Julia Craig Buchanan.

Peter had to borrow the projector many times and if Kate was not in the other girls in the office reported to her that “the handsome blue eyed policeman” had been in and he looked very disappointed that she was not there. He eventually plucked up the courage to ask her out on a date. Now normally you would say, “and the rest was history” but there was very nearly a hiccup!

As we all know Peter had a bit of a temper. At times, particularly during sporting activities there could be a flashpoint if the golf club, racquet, billiard cue or pinball machine failed to respond or perform in the desired manner.

Once when putting “body English” on the pinball machine and not getting the required result he is reported to have pushed the machine all the way across St George’s Mess.

So it was that any errant piece of sporting equipment could also receive the treatment…… Archeologists in future years may recover golf clubs in the sediments of Coot Pond or tennis racquets from the bowels of the Arboretum.

So, back to Peter and Kate. Kate’s mother Georgina Buchanan was on vacation in Bermuda and Peter, wishing to impress and endear himself to his future Mother-in-Law, took her out for a game of golf at the Belmont Golf Club. Now Georgina Scott Buchanan was a much accomplished Ladies Champion and County Golfer, however she was not impressed when her future so-in-law having missed a golf shot immediately whizzed the club into the nearest tree.

Her admonishment to Peter was ….’if he hoped to marry her daughter he had better not do that again’.

Obviously Peter took heed of the warning, at least for a short while, and he and Kate were married in 1963 at St Johns Church, Pembroke.

Bride and Groom cut the cake at their wedding in 1963
 

However, Kate thought that the marriage may not be of a very long duration when two days after the wedding she accompanied Peter to White Hill Field where she saw him take part in the high-speed precision drills and flying crossovers as a member of the Police Motor Cycle Display Team.

In 1966 through 1968 he had his first stint in Special Branch which allowed him some respite from shift work and time with his growing family. Jackie having been born in 1964 and Robert arrived in 1967.

Peter and Kate with Jackie and Robert

In 1968 Peter was promoted to Uniformed Inspector and in 1970 he was transferred to St George as Officer in Charge of Eastern Division.

Eastern Division circa  1971
Front row centre are COP George Duckett and Inspector Peter Stubbs
 

1974 saw Peter promoted to Chief Inspector and under Ian Morrison’s Command he help navigate Special Branch through some of Bermuda’s most perilous times.

March to April 1975 saw Peter seconded with then Superintendent Fred Bean to the Turks & Caicos Islands to help stabilize an internal security situation following the resignation of both the Commissioner and Deputy Commissioner of Police. Both received commendations for the role that they played.

In 1981 Peter declining the offer of promotion to Superintendent made the decision to retire.

Throughout his Police career Peter received four Commissioner’s Commendations, two Governors Commendations, the Colonial Police Long Service Medal and the Colonial Police Medal awarded by her Majesty the Queen.

So what kind of policeman was Peter Stubbs? In his early years in traffic I am told he would have booked his grandmother if she had been speeding. David Lopes was recently heard on his Radio Talk show bemoaning the fact that they need more traffic police like Peter Stubbs used to be.

Peter was a disciplinarian, a no nonsense person who was firm but fair. He was one of those recruited in the 1950’s and early 60’s who had past military and police service that provided an essential operational and administrative core that took the Police Service through into the 1980’s and beyond.

He held the respect of all who worked with him. As one person said to me you knew where you were with him, he stood up for his men and led from the front.

BANK OF BERMUDA

Not one to sit around and do nothing he was very quickly gainfully employed as the Chief Security Officer at the Bank of Bermuda. Peter was in charge of the Physical Security infrastructure, systems and procedures as well as aspects of the Facilities Management.

He was at the Bank from 1981 to 1995 where he was supported by Dave Chew, Ronnie Maderios Mary Westwood, Dougie Brown, Michael Ming, Beverly Saunders and a very able team of security officers.

Just as he had in his police service Peter engendered loyalty and respect in his team. Ronnie Madeiros who worked for him for ten years told me “I was fortunate enough to be hired by him and to work for him. I will remember Peter with respect as a firm but fair employer and a friend.”

Retiring from the Bank of Bermuda in 1995 Peter took on a number of projects as an Independent Security consultant overseeing the awarding of various security contracts. He made a point of ensuring the smaller less well known companies got opportunities to bid and secure work.

In addition he also stepped in for Alan Kennedy as the Manager of Pomander Gate Tennis Club when Alan was absent or on vacation. He was also responsible for managing the Mount Langton Condominium Complex where he lived. He always kept himself busy.

SPORTS – RUGBY- GOLF

While having participated in all the previously mentioned sports and activities possibly Rugby and Golf played a major part throughout his life and his organizational and administrative skills were often called into play.

Peter served a term as President of the Bermuda Rugby Football Union and was also the longest serving Chairman of the BRFU Disciplinary Committee where he was noted for hard but fair decisions and the meticulous records he maintained of proceedings.

A founding member of the Bermuda Police Rugby Club, Peter had played on the Wing for 1st & 2nd XV and was also a Club Captain. In later years he was the Chairman of the Police Rugby Section and accompanied the Team as the Tour Manager on a number of overseas trips. Always ensuring a firm hand and a sense of discipline was there when needed.

Bermuda Police Rugby Football Club
Nicholl Shield Winners -  April 1981
Back row (l-r) Jeff Baker (coach) Keith Cassidy, Ian Coyles, Steve Foster,
Robert Railton, John Moore, Phil Every, Wally Lumb, Ron Beech,
Dave MaWhinney, Greg Lunn, Norman Wilson, Peter Stubbs (linesman).
Front row  - Dave Neilson, Steve Hickmott, Terry Perry, Terry Maxwell,
COP Fred "Penny" Bean, Bill Butterworth (Captain), John Williams (Chairman),
Pat O'Riordan, Martin Cotter, Neil Bennett, Dave Everleigh.

On one occasion on a tour to Montreal, in a bar near our hotel one of our players, an Australian named Mickey Tagg was misbehaving, and having been warned, then cautioned about his behavior, he still persisted. Finally Peter had had enough and Mickey was heard with plaintive cry of;
“Awww c’mon Stubbsie just one more beer” as he was last seen in a full nelson being frog marched by Peter out of the bar back to the hotel.

Peter was not just about being in charge or holding office he was a stalwart running the touch line at Nationals for a number of years. While doing that he would keep an eye on my kids as they ran around while I pounded up and down the Rugby Field. Jenn and Kirsten could always get a mint from Peter.

To honor his memory The Peter Stubbs Trophy for the Most Valuable Player will be awarded by the Bermuda Police Rugby Club at the Annual Duckett Memorial Game.

GOLF

An enthusiastic golfer, Peter was a member at Riddells Bay where like all things he was involved with or belonged to, he found himself taking up the mantle of leadership as the Club Captain. He was also invited to join the Board as a Director and for his services to the club was later granted an Honorary membership.

Kate played with the Friday ladies and Peter mixed duties as a Course Ranger, organizing the draw and playing in the Sweep on a weekend. He would be on duty early morning as starter to see off our Dewsweepers Group then drive around the course before playing with the sweep. It is reported that it was not unknown that when doing this tour of inspection of the course prior to playing later in the sweep, he would re-set certain Tee Markers that were badly positioned for the shape of his golf shot.

And of course legend has it that one particularly large casuarina tree on the left side of the 16th Hole tee box saw its demise for constantly interfering with his tee shot. It was reportedly cut down by the ground staff at Peters request.

Honorary BSGS Member Peter Stubbs at his favourite golf club
Riddells Bay Golf and Country Club
Photo courtesy of BSGS "Rogues Gallery"!
 

A member of the Bermuda Senior Golfers Society he carried out terms as both Captain and President and was also awarded Honorary Membership for his services.

MASONIC LIFE

Over fifty plus years Peter had a long and distinguished involvement with the masonic brotherhood. In 1963 he was initiated into The Broad Arrow Lodge No 1890 on the Grand Registry of England .

He was installed as Worshipful Master of his Lodge in 1968. He was further awarded, and held Grand Rank, Overseas Grand Rank and District Grand rank through 1992 to 2015.

Peter was recognized in the lodge as a kind and caring mentor to all who knew him. He encouraged young masons to progress through the ranks and always made himself available to assist. He taught, coached and when necessary reprimanded. He was greatly respected for his depth of knowledge of the craft and became a master in masonic ritual and rite.

Formation of District Grand Lodge of Bermuda - May 2006
Peter Stubbs is seated on the left of front row next to Lord Northampton. Peter was
installed as the District  Senior Grand Warden with the rank of Past Grand Standard Bearer 
Also included in this photo are several other Bermuda Police Officers - Derek Fletcher (Back row 3rd from left),
Gary Venning (Back row 4th from left next to banner),  John Dale (Middle row on right - with red band),
Dennis Brookes (3rd from right on middle row) and Derek Brashier (4th from right on Middle row).  
 
  

Peter was a leader of Masonry in Bermuda and was formally acknowledged in 2014 for 50 years of service and achievements by the Grand Lodge of England.

I would like to acknowledge and thank Andy Bermingham, Viv Redford and Ronnie Maderios for their assistance in the preparation of this tribute

We all have our special memories and reasons for being here to celebrate his life.

Peter had a long and distinguished life. He was a much respected colleague and also a good friend. He will be sadly missed but always remembered.

Bill Butterworth
12th February 2019

Tribute from Ali Horton (niece)

Peter with his two favourite nieces,  Kate (left) and Ali (right)


I want to tell you about our Uncle Peter and with the help of my brother William and sister Kate, to try and capture for you the important part he played in our lives particularly when we were growing up. Sadly our parents died when we were young and our holidays were spent every summer with our grandmother in Newark in England, together with Auntie Kate ( my father’s sister ) Uncle Peter, and our cousins Jackie and Robert over from Bermuda.

So now our combined childhood memories of the 1970’s come tumbling out, both Uncle Peter and Auntie Kate organising all 5 children into cricket teams, tennis practice, swimming…

Lunches would be always taken in the dining room supervised by our lovely, no nonsense, Scottish grandmother, all sitting properly, with good table manners, meanwhile …Uncle Peter had somehow manage to wave some magic wand over Granny to allow him to eat his meal on his knees watching cricket on the TV next door. We were very envious. Intermittently he would shout to Auntie Kate that her boyfriend was coming on each time Tony Greg was called into bat.

My sister Kate remembers Peter would say to us that all guests would be very welcome to come and stay in Bermuda …… but for 2 weeks only…… moreover he said he would mark their day of arrival on the calendar and then 14 days to the day later, he would put their suitcases outside the door and drive them himself to the airport to ensure they went home. We would laugh nervously at this, never quite sure how much he meant this or not. Auntie Kate has said subsequently that he was probably deadly serious !

My brother William recalls Uncle Peter hareing round the quiet country bends of Nottinghamshire in the car with us children in the back at speeds to make us squeal with delight. If we ever raised an eyebrow as to the wisdom of this now, Will says he knew at the age of 8 with utter certainty that Uncle Peter, being a policeman conferred some sort of divine safety to us all.

Once my grandmother sent Uncle Peter to evening service one Sunday at the local church with some of us children. The service had started as he sat down with us in the back pew. The church was almost empty. The vicar paused in his address, smiled at Uncle Peter and said ‘Do please come forward and join us at the front’ . ‘No thank you very much ‘ Uncle Peter replied firmly ‘ We are fine here’’. And that was that!

I have a clear picture of Auntie Kate saying one afternoon she thought she might go shopping for some new clothes. Uncle Peter put his arms around her and said ‘No need darling because you always look a million dollars’. To a child this seemed like I was witnessing a piece of Hollywood. Again, Auntie Kate has burst my childish bubble when I told her this story this week, saying Uncle Peter may have been schmoozing her because he didn’t want her to spend any money…

There are other stories and other memories from our childhood and we have loved him as adults too, but in those early vulnerable years for us he was a such a wonderful, enthusiastic and caring influence . We are very happy to be here as part of this celebration of his life.

Ali Horton
12th February 2019
 
Tribute from Robert Stubbs
 
Peter and Robert
 
You have all heard what a full life Peter, Dad, Uncle Peter or Poppa as he was called more recently, had and for that he was truly grateful. Despite his many awards, achievements, board memberships and committee memberships, what many people may not have known is that at heart, Poppa was a family man.

He was a loving husband to Kate for close to 55 years, a doting father to Jackie and I, and a caring uncle to his 3 nieces and nephews who tragically lost their parents at an early age. Even though he was forever busy, he always made us feel like we, his family, were his greatest achievement.

Poppa was always there for us. He was always ready to provide a helping hand. In the early days that might have meant giving us a bath or feeding us. Later on it could have been teaching us to ride a bike (which usually consisted of taking us to the top of a hill, giving us a push and shouting to us not to fall off!), but it seemed to work! It might have been helping us with homework or getting us ready for a test

Poppa never seemed to miss a game I played or a ballet recital that Jackie was in. He always came to music recitals we were in (well if I am honest, he might have missed a few of those but who could blame him for that! Listening to 10, 12 year olds play various stringed instruments is not most people’s forte!).

He taught us right from wrong from an early age and left us in no doubt which of those options we were supposed to choose when faced with that decision. While he was a disciplinarian, there was never a smile far away from Poppa’s lips and I think for the most part Jackie and I made the right choices. There was one time however when Poppa decided to lock me up in his handcuffs, only to realize after whatever the suitable length of time he thought it was necessary for me to think over the error of my ways, that he had lost the keys. I am sure that put a smile on the faces of his fellow officers when he had to call one of them and ask them to come around and unlock me!

As we grew older, Poppa was always around to cast an eye over the latest boy in Jackie’s life that she was brave enough to bring home. He was always stood in the kitchen on a Friday night as I was going out, offering sound advice not to drink too much which, more often than not, I completely ignored. However, Poppa was also always there to come and pick me up on Friday night, when having ignored his advice, I was brave enough to call him up and let him know that I was in no shape to drive home!

Poppa was always the first one to get the ping pong table out at Christmas time which we kept in the garage - and let the games begin. For those of you who knew him well, you can imagine that losing at ping pong was not high on Poppa’s list of priorities. As soon the table was set up, word quickly got out and we would have many friends come around to play, with Poppa determined to beat them all!

Now getting the ping pong table out and playing in the garage did present some challenges, as with his big heart Poppa was always helping people out that were down on their luck and somehow that usually meant that they lived in our garage for a certain length of time. In fact we had one particular fellow, who went by the great nickname of 'Chicken', who ended up living in our garage for 5 years or so. Funny enough, it wasn’t until later in life that I realized that it was quite an unusual thing to have people living in your garage as we just became so used to it.

Poppa also taught us all to drive (and I should add, we all passed the test first time) although it must be said that being his pupil was not a job for the faint of heart! A certified driving instructor for the police, fire and ambulance services, Poppa took his instructing very seriously. Hands at 10 and 2, checking in the rearview mirror every 20 seconds, indicating or signaling well ahead of your turn, using the hand brake on a hill etc. etc. In particular, Poppa took the signaling part to another level. If you have ever been in car with Poppa, there would have been a time when you no doubt just about jumped out of your skin as he roared “Nice Signal” at the top of his lungs to the poor unsuspecting person who had forgotten to use their indicator.

Poppa was there when both Jackie and I went off to university. He was the one who got us organized and took us up, getting us settled in to our respective schools with his usual efficient manner and then would disappear just as quickly. Poppa was not one for long drawn out tearful goodbyes! But, he was there at the airport whenever we came home, or needed a hand, or he would help us out if we ever got into a spot of financial difficulty!
Moving back to Bermuda, Poppa was still there for us, allowing us to stay in the pool house for a bit or helping us to find an apartment. His sources seemed to be endless. He was there for us, or at least he was when we could get him away from Riddell’s Bay for a bit, when grandchildren came around and we needed a hand with babysitting or book reading or taking one or more of them to whatever activities they had on that particular day. He was very proud of all of his grandchildren and loved them very much.

Well I guess by now you have the picture that Poppa was very much a family man as well as a very useful person to have around. However a much lesser known attribute of Poppa’s was that he was a bit of a poet and very fond of penning little rhyming verses for family functions, birthdays, treasure hunts and the like.

However to his great surprise and enjoyment, at his 80th birthday party, his beloved wife Kate produced a poem of her own - a poem which having blown him away completely, he subsequently decided he wanted read at his funeral which I am here to do now. I think it is a tremendous tribute to the fine man he was and I was happy to be asked to do so.
So, an ode to the life and good times of PBS, Peter, Dad, Uncle Peter or Poppa goes something like this:

Ode to Peter, Dad or Poppa

Peter B. was born in June of 1935.
A sturdy babe at birth he was
and soon began to thrive.
An angel till 11 years
his mum was heard to say
But then a change occurred
which lasted till this day.
 
At 12, an independent streak  
Began to rear its head
And now our lad would cricket play  
Instead of going to bed.
 
So in the streets of Davyhume  
This love of sports was born
But when it came to work in school  
His loyalties were torn.
 
At age 18 he finished school
And to the army went
They sent him to Hong Kong, 
No less  A policeman was his bent.
 
For 2 whole years he loved the work,
The climate and the sun
The thought of life in Manchester  
Did not seem like much fun.
 
So off to the Isles of Rest he went  
To a cop’s life in the sun.
With a life of sports to play  
Until the day was done.
 
5 years passed as a single man  
Then one historic day
He came across a girl called Kate  
With whom he wished to play.
 
This girl it seems was hard to win  
And played at ’hard to get’
But in the end the pair were wed  
And neither had regret.

So now a married man was he
With children on the way
His life was changed beyond belief
With fewer sports to play.

Gone were darts and rugby too
And bridge was off the list
But Peter B adapted well
And complained not what he missed.

The children grew and gave him joy
He watched them all with pride
And Kate was with him all the way
Walking by his side.

From Constable to Chief Inspector
Up the ranks he moved
To Head of Special Branch
A post He very much approved.

The years rolled on, the children wed
A Grandpapa was he.
Retirement was next and with it golf
His life was fun and free.

Captain, Director, Ranger too
All these hats he wore
Until the day he realized
His back had become too sore.

And that’s the story now today,
Some aches and pains he’s borne
But things are on the up and up
We must not be forlorn.

So now we wish him happiness
On this his special day
Surrounded by the ones he loves
Let’s shout hip hip hooray.

Robert Stubbs
12th February 2019
 
Peter and Kate with their Grandchildren
Back row (l-r) Donovan, Savannah and Shane
Seated - Peter and Kate with Jackie and Adrianna
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Comments  

#2 Terry 2019-02-22 13:41
Thank you for compliment.
I was and am one of a handful of Snooker players who whooped Edward Gumbs (of Queens Club).
I remember that night back in the 70's when I played his game and beat him at it.

The crowd roared. Someone had to drive me home.
Good days good memories and lots of work when I had to find food for when clubs came to St. George for a snooker match.

Editors note - I believe that's the same Ed Gumbs who worked for many years at Phoenix, and yes he was a very good snooker player. Well done Terry.

Memories.
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#1 Terry 2019-02-22 12:42
Excellent article and worthy of a good man.
Only mistake I found as I stated on your facebook page is that those two photo's of "snooker" name wise is wrong.

Not Steve Bond.

That's John Freeborough.
Played many a game with all of them as I was Captain of the team from St. George PRC for a number of years.

Shalom.

Editors note - Many thanks Terry for pointing out that it's John Freeborough. Had no idea you were an ace snooker player.
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