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   Obituary - Gordon Blake


Dr Gordon Thomas William Blake D.F.C., B.Sc(Hons), M.D.

House: Hawke
Years: 1937-1940

On 29th March 2013, Webmaster received an e-mail from Margaret Blake:

Dear Steve
I am very sorry to inform you that my husband, Dr Gordon Thomas William Blake D.F.C., BSc(Hons), M.D. (Hawke  House) died in Dumfriesshire peacefully on the 7th February 2013. He was just one month off his 89th Birthday.
Margaret Blake 

The following was Gordon's entry in the Alumni section of this web site prior to his death:

House: Hawke
Year: 1937-1940
Memories of the School:
I attended the Prince of Wales School during the period 1937 to 1940. There were about 30 day-boys and 100 boarders when I arrived, and numbers were increasing fairly rapidly.

There had been a change of headship when I arrived: Captain Nicholson had been replaced by Mr Bernard Astley. It was a well-disciplined school under each of these headmasters in turn and I felt proud to be a pupil there.

Extra-curricular activities included an OTC under Captain Forrest’s direction, and we took our training seriously because of the political developments in Europe (and in Abyssinia) at the time. We looked forward to the end-of-term OTC training camps on the Ngong Hills.

A school band, with its “brass quartet” (in which I played the cornet), had been established under Mr James’ direction. On Empire Days we led the OTC marching parade on the “quad”.

We were blessed with an excellent teaching staff, both in the classrooms and on the playing fields. To this day I still hear Mr Gledhill’s injunction to “tackle him low”!

And then it all came to an end for years to come. We were at war and the Prince of Wales School buildings were converted into a Military Hospital. Those pupils who lived in Nairobi area were to attend the classes at the Girls’ Secondary School (now Kenya High School). Up-country pupils would be able to attend classes (and board) to be given in hastily-constructed buildings on the site of Sparks (now Lake) Hotel on the shores of Lake Naivasha, under Mr Lindahl’s headship.

It would be some two or three years before the Military handed back our buildings at Kabete. By the end of the war the school’s Roll of Honour totalled 84 – a casualty rate which must at least equal that of any UK or Commonwealth public school. They lived up to their motto “To the Uttermost”

Since leaving School:

  • Joined the RAF, (Pathfinder force - awarded D.F.C. 1945)
  • Took an honours degree in Mathematics and joined the Overseas Civil Service (East Africa)
  • Left in 1964 to go back to University
  • Medical Degree awarded in 1969
  • Employed in the UK National Health Service and then went into Academic Medicine in Africa and the Caribbean.
  • I married a school master’s daughter, Margaret Stewart, in 1952 - her bridesmaid being Cynthia Astley now Mrs Alastair McCrae (Alastair an ex PoW ‘boy - Rhodes 1943-6). A number of my ex teachers were present at the wedding, and included Mr & Mrs Bernard Astley, Mr & Mrs Jack Lindahl, Mr & Mrs Jack Forrest. My Best Man being a school friend Peter Campbell.
  • We have a daughter Lesley living in Idaho, USA and 3 grandchildren
  • Retired and now living in Scotland

    (Registered - 26th October 2005)