We were deeply saddened to hear about the death of Raymond ‘Ray’ Needham who died in South Wales on 21st April 2018. Ray had served here in Bermuda as a young P.C. from October 1973 – 1976 during which time he worked in Central Division, Hamilton, and was an active member of our Police Rugby Team.

Raymond "Ray" Needham

There was some confusion about whether or not Ray had the nickname “Shoes” so we offer this article to clarify that Ray was definitely not “Shoes” Needham. 

Ray was actually the second of three “Needham’s” to join the Bermuda Police.

The first was Dave "Big Joe" Needham - who served here from September 1966 – June 1970, before moving on to Canada. Dave was also an excellent rugby player who served in Central Division and in Cycle Squad.

Dave "Big Joe" Needham

Fresh off the Plane!
Dave is on the far right of the top row.

Dave came out with quite a group of new recruits with previous police experience (his was in the West Riding Constabulary) as you can see in this photo of them arriving at the airport fresh of the plane. The photo was featured in our ”Who, When and Where” column which you can view at http://expobermuda.com/index.php/who-when-where/163-whowherewhen4#comment-76

After leaving Bermuda in 1970, Dave settled in Canada. He still has fond memories of living and working in Bermuda, and he was one of a number of our former colleagues who attended a grand reunion of ex-Bermuda police officers back in 1997. You can view the reunion group here on our website at http://expobermuda.com/index.php/who-when-where/97-canadianreunion

Dave went on to set up his own very successful Productions Company in 1993 which he recently handed over to his lovely daughter, Ashleigh, although Dave and his wife are still involved in the business. They live just north of Toronto.

Dave with his daughter, Ashleigh and wife Elizabeth

Dave recently sent us a photo of this “plaque” which makes it clear he still has still has the very highest regard for the Bermuda Police, and is proud of the fact that he served here as a police officer. He continues to stay in touch with us from time to time. 

Our third Needham is Roger “Shoes” Needham who joined the Bermuda Police in December 1977, and served here until September 1982, first in Central Division (Hamilton) and then in Operations (Traffic). 

Young P.C. Roger “Shoes” Needham

We understand from Mike Caulkett, who served here from 1964-1970 that after “Shoes” Needham left Bermuda in 1982, he re-joined the Sussex Police as had Mike following his adventures on the ‘Fletcher Christian’ which you can read about in his article at http://expobermuda.com/index.php/articles/64-fchristian 

I should add that Mike was one of the first of our ExPo members to write an article about his life story for our “Then and Now” column and it is, without doubt, one of the best we have ever received. You can read it at http://expobermuda.com/index.php/tan/239-mikecaulkett

Although we have not heard directly from “Shoes” we know he is regularly in touch with Bob Kinnon on Facebook, and we encourage him to write and let us know how he’s doing these days.

So, we had three Needham’s serving in the Bermuda Police at various times as follows:-
Dave “Big Joe” Needham from 1966 – 1970
Raymond “Ray” Needham from 1973 – 1976, and
Roger “Shoes” Needham from 1977 - 1982

If you have any comments about our three Needhams please fell free to make them below.


Editors  note -  We have no idea how "Shoes" came to acquire his nickname, but on checking our records we note that on joining the Bermuda Police his height was 6'5", while "Big Joe" was 6'2 1/2", and Ray was the shortest at 5'11".  

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#3 terry 2018-10-30 17:51
I worked with all those stated by Davie including him in 67. We were only a couple months apart.

Lots of water under the bridge since then.
Malky Smith always hit his head on the roof of the old Morris Wagons.
Woody Willcock ….remember him?

Dick Cuddahey (sp) would come from traffic and sleep in the Parade Room.

Next week....……
#2 Davie Kerr 2018-09-06 05:55
I served with all 3 Needhams in my time although I only ever worked directly with "Big Joe", as I joined his watch in Hamilton under Sgt Gerry Harvey when I came out of Training School in Dec '66. That was quite a watch: as well as Gerry (Watch Sgt) and "Kenny" Roberts (Station Sgt) we had "Shakey" Johnson as Station PC and A/Sgt, Barry Meyers as Relief Station PC, Ray Banks as Duty Driver, and Mike Heelan, Tommy Barnes, Pat McBride, "Big Joe", Ian Mitchell, Brian Kent, Ralph Sealy and me. Gerry was heard to remark more than once that we maybe weren't the brightest bunch around, but we'd be the first watch he'd ever want to take into any sort of combat situation!

Gerry, Kenny, Shakey, Tommy and Mitch are sadly no longer with us: I believe that Ray, Big Joe and Pat are all in Canada and Ralph in the US: and I've no idea about Barry, Mike or Brian.

Editors note - Indeed a formidable Watch. Can't help regarding Berry Meyers, Mike Heelan, or Brian Kent. Anyone out there who can assist?
#1 Don Urquhart 2018-06-24 09:08
I served with Roger 'Shoes' Needham in the MCPS in 1981, a great guy with a marvellous sense of humour and a man with style! Who could forget him, resplendent in dinner jacket, following his bout with Dave Shakeshaft in the 1978 PRC boxing? I catch up with him when I visit the UK, Bob Kinnon and Steve Peterson often join us. My knowledge of how he came by his nickname is second hand, acquired, along with a wealth of other knowledge, in the PRC bar! I make no claims of accuracy. Apparently, when Shoes was in Training School he turned out for Morning Parade with a particularly impressively bulled pair of black shoes. Sadly, on coming to attention, with accompanying requisite stamping of feet, the outer layer of illicitly applied liquid polish broke up, revealing a dull, grey finish. Hence the name, Shoes! Regards Don Urquhart, Sydney, Australia.

Editors note - Great to hear from you Don and I strongly suspect that your explanation of how "Shoes" acquired his nickname will forever go down in BPS folklore regardless of whether it's completely factual!

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