Events

Several events were held to celebrate Glyn’s life. A small family funeral took place at Portchester crematorium on April 20th, 2016. Then on June 4th, in Binstead, on the Isle of Wight, family and friends met to install a plaque on a sculpture made by Glyn, before a gathering to share stories in Seaview. The next day, on June 5th, at Netley Marsh, the headquarters of Tools For Self Reliance, around one hundred people met for an afternoon of discussion,songs and celebration, after some of Glyn’s ashes were scattered beside a tree planted to commemorate Sigyn Roberts. Finally, on August 20th 2016, friends and relatives in Sweden gathered in Daretorp, scattered the remainder of Glyn’s ashes and placed flowers at Sigyn’s grave, before spending an afternoon in happy recollection of his life.

Photos from these, events and comments from many of those who spoke are posted below. In addition we will provide links to videos of many of those who spoke on June 5th. (Messages about Glyn from others, not a part of these events, are reproduced on a different page, Messages).

Sweden, August 2016

Gathering at the graveside in Daretorp; in the nearby hall for lunch, song and celebration; a photo of Glyn and Sigyn in Ethiopia (provided by a friend of Goran and Rita Dahlgren); a card in recognition of donation to cancer charity by the Arlig family, in memory of Glyn

 

More of the family at the graveyard in Daretorp; a song, written by Glyn, about the Roberts family in Sweden (and sung on the day!); Goran remembering Glyn; a gathering of Sigyn’s brothers and sisters.

 

 

Netley Marsh, June 2016

netley marsh 5

Michael Jacobs hosted the event on June 5th, at Netley Marsh, introducing speakers and doing a great job summarising the lengthy memoir Glyn wrote, in the process. His summary, introducing the speakers, is available here.

 

Dorothy Cussens – on Glyn’s childhood

Glyn, my sister Lorna and I are first cousins. His father, Bob and my mother Ada, were brother and sister, (they were the middle two of a family of six children) and were very close in all respects. Both of Glyn’s parents were socialists and internationalists and so was my mother, they all spoke fluent Esperanto and did what they could to promote fairness and equality.

Being an only child, as was his mother, Ruth, Glyn did not have much of an extended family. So I think he was glad to have cousins near his own age to play with. Our family spent many summer holidays at Weet Ing Farm, his home in a remote Pennine valley a few miles south of Haworth moor.

It was very basic, especially in the early days with no running water or electricity and so no telephone. Transport was by pony and trap – provided the pony, Polly was in the mood! However we had great times there with Glyn, he always had lots of ideas for exciting things to do such as damming the stream and messing about with ants’ nests.

Another way to entertain ourselves was to play the wind up gramophone. Sadly we had only one record, Bing Crosby singing Tiptoe through the Tulips on one side and the Folks who live on the Hill on the other – I still know all the words to that one!

Glyn was the perfect playmate. I can see him now with his mop of dark curly hair, big sparkling brown eyes and bare feet. He was so daring and capable that I was a bit in awe of him and was surprised to find out years later that he was actually only 3 months older than me.

Because he was given the freedom of the farm and its surroundings and was able to make up his own games and occupy himself, he grew up confident and (yes, you’ve guessed it!) self reliant.

Glyn had many talents and capabilities and above all he was an optimist. It is little wonder that he went on to do so much and to live such a fulfilling and worthwhile life.

With love from Dorothy.

 

 

Arthur Gillette (message sent in April 2016 for the family funeral).

Thank You, Mate!

Early in April of this year, the news of Glyn’s death struck me like a physical blow. I immediately reacted in a way I hadn’t done for years and indeed thought I never would again : I burst into abundant tears powered by uncontrollable sobs.

Since we first met in the early 1960s, our lives had been extraordinarily intertwined. Here, towards the end, this trend found each of us in hospital with a serious illness. Indeed, as I write this I wonder how long – lacking now the vital presence of my other « twister » – I’m still good for.

Our relationship, like that of two lengths of rope intertwined, was made exceptionally strong. And that goes back to the beginning !

In Paris, where we worked together, running Unesco’s Coordinating Committee for International Voluntary Service, neither of us really cared about being “Monsieur Numéro Un”… And in fact it turned out that, given our international vocation, one or the other of us was almost always travelling while the other kept the shop.

Later, when I was at Unesco, an urgent request came for a consultant mission to Tanzania. That country had set up a series of rural secondary schools to help reduce poverty by teaching peasant youngsters how to do practical tasks for agricultural – and other aspects of rural – development. Why was this not happening? Glyn went as a consultant and his conclusion was straightforward: when the kids finished their schooling they were skilled and  motivated to apply those skills locally, but they had no tools.

Not long afterwards, I got a personal note from Glyn saying that he had begun collecting and refurbishing hand tools… and it was from there that the idea for Tools For Self Reliance began to grow.

OK… now: out to sea!

It would have been stupidly dangerous for us, later, to sail our 26-foot cutter Amitié  into the Atlantic, without our two stretches of warp  wrapped strongly and durably around each other.  Later we repeated the Transatlantic crossing in its well-named successor, Amity. The safe success of our two Transatlantic crossings we owed to that strength.

And as long as I may live I shall worship at an imaginary shrine that includes remnants of our shared length of entwined rope.

Many thanks, Dear Mate!  

 

Bjorn Roberts – on Sigyn as a mother

Sigyn was many things to many people. A wonderful deeply loving wife to Glyn, and mother to Daniel Adam and me. Many of you here counted her as a close friend – kind-hearted, fun, creative, out-going, can picture her ready, radiant smile.

Modest, and sometimes unsure of herself. Never felt entirely at home in England – could blush beetroot red if anyone laughed at her Swedish accent. But could be tough as old rope. Undaunted in publicly – and successfully – challenging the governor of Haslar Detention Centre (v. hierarchical) on behalf of refugees whom she taught. Could startle people unintentionally with the blunt honesty of her opinions.

Showed great strength to bring up three unruly boys (single handed when Glyn spent days and nights at Netley Marsh). Did it with obvious love, and still had energy for long distance swims in the sea however cold, and to dig happily hour after hour preparing the allotment for the next potato crop.

Sigyn and Glyn shared a hardy and joyful approach to life, and deep love for each other. Each had a strong, active sense of fairness and social justice, wanting to do whatever they could to help those people most in need.

But differed in some ways – didn’t always see eye-to- eye, especially when Glyn sprung one of his many new adventures on us. Sigyn not so happy when, days after I was born, Glyn set off to sail the Atlantic in a small, rickety craft with an utterly inexperienced crew. Previous voyage had ended when he sank!

After Daniel born, Sigyn dismayed when Glyn accepted a job in England. But we left Sweden and Sigyn’s beloved Ärlig family, to live in Portsmouth. …. and the time when, during the long hot summer of 1976, Glyn invited Bohemian activists to use our house in Little Anglesey Road as their headquarters, wash block, kitchen, yogic classroom etc. Made themselves at home. Planned to sail a consignment of proscribed books to Namibia, and we grew to like them, but mightily relieved – especially Sigyn (had provided many meals and some therapy) – when they left us after several weeks to find a seaworthy boat.

Don’t want to give you the impression that Sigyn simply went along with Glyn’s plans. Before he could resign his job at Portsmouth polytechnic to dedicate himself full-time to TFSR, first had to convince Sigyn he could make it work. And once she gave her agreement, she played an active role in TFSR’s development. (South African flag for TFSR at Mandela’s succession was the last thing she made. Whitebeam planted here in her memory).

An accomplished teacher – dear friend to many – enthusiastic talented artist – incredible mother – a really good person with an infectious delight in digging up the first new potatoes of the season.

Sigyn’s battle with cancer. Given at most a year to live, she didn’t accept her lot. With Glyn’s unstinting love and support; love and friendship of many of you here today, she fought on for six mostly happy and active years.

Died 22 years ago, aged only 56. She, like Glyn, retained her warmth and good humour to the end. They have left us with so many happy memories, and with the example of two lives, truly lived well together.

 

Adam Roberts – on Glyn as a writer

Glyn the writer

I think of dad, of Glyn, and four words come to mind: romantic, idealist, practical and fun. The romantic relished falling in love, strumming a guitar, sailing over oceans. The idealist questioned development and founded TFSR. He was practical, the man who loved a project, using tools, who built a cradle that seven of us, so far, have slept in. And he was undoubtedly fun.

I want to talk a little about him as a writer—in part because I have spent the past couple of months editing and publishing online his memoirs. He cared enormously about words, crafting strong sentences. We know where that was from. Ruth Roberts, though unpublished, was a skilful letter writer, an avid reader, a fierce debater and a Scrabble wordsmith. In her late eighties down on the Isle of Wight she re-read the entire works of Shakespeare, doggedly getting through them all, even those she declared at dinner were sub-standard. Robert Roberts, was probably the bigger inspiration. A BBC playwright, short-story writer and teacher, he was a strong, funny and humane author—though not a confident one. It was Glyn, sometimes Ruth, who had to push him to dare to publish. Ruth and Robert also taught others to write, led adult education classes and short-story writing groups – to love words. In the same way, in our childhood, dad would read us Treasure Island, Swallows and Amazons and other adventures at bedtime. And to our children, in India for example, he spent so many hours reading them poems and stories.

So what of Glyn’s writing? Well there was Glyn the romantic. His first book, “Sailing in a Sieve”, written as a student in Sweden, told of his youthful misadventure in a leaky boat in the Baltic and his fortunate wreck in the North Sea off the coast of Germany. And there was Glyn the idealist. His series of pamphlets about volunteering and aid, notably Questioning Development, were written with conviction, fire in his belly, a man campaigning for solidarity, international justice. It was the idealist and the romantic combined who came up with lyrics for songs such as “Any old tools, any old tools”, and lines such as “are you with us in a struggle for a fairer world, a people’s alliance”. I think it was Glyn the idealist and romantic, who co-wrote with Mark Smith—who I wish had been here today too—a history of TFSR, “Keeping Something Alive”. What he wanted to keep alive, I believe, was the spirit and interest in the ideas of what international development should be about.

The idealist also took up other causes. He joined a letter-writing campaign, with Amnesty, to free imprisoned comedians in Burma. He wrote letters to newspapers in the 1970s condemning apartheid. Years later he wrote and marched against the invasion of Iraq. I remember how he entered and won a short-story competition, while living in Gosport, writing about a world in which climate change brought ever higher sea levels and flooding. It wasn’t enough for Glyn the idealist to win, he then made a fuss of refusing to accept the £200 prize because the whole thing had been sponsored by the National Lottery, which he had declared to be a tax on the stupid.

What about Glyn the practical writer? Having retired, he taught himself to sculpt, and installed several carvings in public places across the Isle of Wight. These always told stories about little people defying the powerful. Then, with Daniel, he wrote and published a book as a guide to these sculptures, “Curious Carvings”. His memoirs, too are a wonderful combination of setting out the past century of family history, but with revealing, at times inspiring and engaging stories from a well-travelled and varied life.

But through it all was Glyn with a great sense of fun. The writing I think about most is not his published work. Here it is Glyn who took time to write and draw funny birthday cards for us as children, and for us and many others as adults. He also sketched and wrote poems for Christmas cards. He wrote jokes, puzzles and sent quizzes—by fax, then by email—as we lived in different parts of the world. Later, as he discovered a surprising love of technology, he would dash off a birthday poem, set it to chords on a ukulele and record a birthday greeting over several stanzas that he sing through email to us. It was Glyn with a sense of fun who got an old stamp from the Suez Canal Company and wrote an April Fool’s letter to a global volunteering organisation saying youngsters from around the world would gather with spades and shovels to widen the Suez Canal – thinking they would laugh. Then he turned up at a global meeting and found that item seven on the agenda was to do exactly that. Sometimes fun words caused trouble…

In his final weeks, he remained incredibly devoted to words. He worked on his memoirs, even in hospital. Even very near the end, he sat in his hospital bed with a stack of cards, writing farewell messages to friends and loved ones, his handwriting increasingly spidery but his energy and kindness shining through. His written words, from the scrap of paper – shown by Mike earlier – “I have gone to seek my fortune” – to his final farewell cards, were powerful evidence of Glyn as a writer – a romantic, idealist, a practical man, and a man with a sense of fun.

Thank you.

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Sarah Hirom – on Glyn and the early days of TFSR

I had known Glyn since he came to work at Portsmouth Polytechnic where we worked in neighbouring buildings. His “Questioning Development” featured strongly in my students’ reading lists. Our shared background of volunteering in Africa generated lots of discussion, sharing of ideas and a deep friendship between our families. We all became neighbours when Charles and I went to live in Gosport, a few doors away Glyn needed to test the hypothesis that volunteers really could collect and refurbish hand tools.

He had to sell the idea to others to persuade them to volunteer. His enthusiasm and cogent argument convinced his close friends to help. Next he needed to recruit volunteers to collect and refurbish the tools. A week later we were joined by another Gosport neighbour, Eddie Grimble, then a PhD student at the Poly and today still the Hon Secretary of TFSR, such is the commitment Glyn’s idea has inspired.

We asked the Polytechnic Chaplin, the Rev. Peter Wright, who is with us today, to convene a meeting in the Students Union. In explaining the Tools for Tanzania scheme and the huge SIDO request for 16 000 tools to eight volunteers he enthused and empowered them – here was something that needed doing and they could help make it happen!

He worked alongside them every step of the way – he never asked anyone to do something he wasn’t prepared to do himself. In a cold unfurnished workshop, he set to work, inspiring by example, to build a workbench from timber sourced from skips, to which he fixed three vices (from the tools just collected) and had us all refurbishing, even if we did have to wear our overcoats. He could somehow transform unpromising conditions into a worthwhile fun experience, working together with a sense of real purpose.

He knew just the right time to seek publicity and how to create an occasion that the media would notice: in June 1979, when the Portsmouth Group had 1,400 tools ready for shipment, Glyn organised a small ceremony in the Church Hall workshop with a representative of the Tanzanian High Commission in London, who hammered the final nail into the lid of one of the crates. Glyn had an imaginative eye for detail – the nail was “golden” (thanks to cigarette foil packaging!). He ensured that one of the local MPs, Frank Judd, an old friend, was there and he made a statement the press could quote. The Observer covered it and Tools for Tanzania was transformed overnightfrom a local action to a national one.

The event and the coverage was very effective in moving the organisation forward. In the following few days, 200 letters from all over the country poured into Glyn’s home. They offered help; they wanted advice; and they asked pertinent questions about insurance, antiques and who would use the tools overseas – “Did Tanzanians use knitting machines?”; and they made requests. They raised a whole new set of challenges which Glyn and the advisory group sought to answer.

The first Directors’ Meeting of Tools for Self Reliance, as it soon became, was held in November 1979, with Chris Judd as Chairman.

Chris could not be here today, but has sent this message:

Chris Judd

Frank and I are very sad not to be with you all today to celebrate Glyn’s life – and what an interesting, varied and effective life it was! Frank first met Glyn in the course of international meetings in the early 1960s when Frank was Secretary General of International Voluntary Service.

This friendship was happily developed over the 1960s and 1970s when Frank served as MP for Portsmouth and Glyn was lecturing at the Polytechnic. Glyn canvassed for Frank, we enjoyed meals in each other’s homes, met Glyn’s feisty mother and felt we got to know his father by reading his two powerful books. Our affection for Glyn was reinforced by our mutual warm friendship with Arthur Gillette. They were devoted friends.

I was proud to be the first Chair of TFSR and am still the proud possessor of membership card number one!

Glyn was a lovely man: warm, generous, modest and committed, with a great sense of humour. He was also a man of many parts, with creative gifts for sculpting and writing. Glyn’s was a life worth celebrating indeed!

 

Mary Atkinson – on  early days at Netley Marsh

After Eddie Grimble had done some initial work over the summer to make the site vaguely habitable, I was the first person to live and work at Netley Marsh as a long term volunteer. Glyn came over two days a week, having a small room in the house to stay over, and I was joined a few months later by Mike Jacobs and then Nick Hutchinson. And here the three of us are again, 33 years later to pay tribute to Glyn.

When Mike asked me to say something, he said “we thought you could tell the story of when Sigyn came to visit Netley Marsh and we completely messed up Glyn’s room before she arrived” and I said “did we?” and he said, “you know, when we put his bedding on a pile of straw and put empty beer cans, clothes, cigarette butts and condoms strewn round the room ready for when he showed Sigyn round” and I said “…mmmh it sounds vaguely familiar..I think I’d blanked that one out”. Anyway, the reason that story is funny, if indeed it is, is that the picture portrayed is so much the antithesis of Glyn.

When I think back, the image of Glyn which comes to my mind, is of him either before we were up or after we had packed up for the day, out in the yard, brush in hand and whistling of course, sweeping up the Netley Marsh site. That, on the other hand, was very Glyn – his energy, dogged hard work, humility, and alongside his adventurous spirit, his liking for things to be clean and tidy (he always preferred to wash up after our communal meals than cook). And he didn’t tell us to do the sweeping up or even set up a rota as I would probably have done, he led by example and just did it. If it’s not reading too much into it, I think it was also an expression of his attempt to keep some semblance of order in those exciting and sometimes turbulent times.

As is already apparent, he didn’t always succeed…I recall the time we woke nervously on the morning of our first public open day, designed to win over the somewhat suspicious locals, and found that Maurie the woodworker,who was the first occupant of our proudly refurbished craft workshops, had painted ‘support the miners’ in huge red letters across the side of his workshop –  it must have been May or June 1984 – not to mention the infamous appearance of Comfrey the goat, draped in a fetching “votes for goats” banner at the contentious AGM of that year – Glyn was not amused! Practical jokes and political uprisings aside, it is of course almost entirely due to Glyn’s vision, positivity, determination, and sheer hard work that TFSR came through its forming and storming phase, to reach norming and so is still here performing today.

Finally, I’d just like to express my own gratitude for the amazing opportunity and experience Glyn gave me working alongside him at TFSR. I arrived straight from University, never having really worked, but with lots of ideas and ideals and was then able to be part of a committed group of people trying to put these into practice, in the most practical way. When I think back I’m amazed at the trust he put in me and the responsibility that was given to me. Glyn always saw and brought out the best in people; he encouraged,  inspired and enthused while remaining kind, modest and fun. Although I didn’t keep in very regular contact with Glyn over the years, when I did see him, I always felt a bond and a real affection stemming from those hugely challenging and exciting early days at Netley Marsh.

 

Sarah Ingleby – on TFSR going strong today

My name is Sarah Ingleby and I have the honour of being the Chief Executive Officer at Tools for Self Reliance. I have been asked to speak about our organisation as it is today – but to talk about now, requires that I talk about how we got started.

When Glyn started Tools for Self Reliance he created a vision of people working together to build better futures. He created a vision of people here in the UK, donating the tools and machines they no longer used and a vision of a loyal band of volunteers coming together, working together, giving their time and commitment to making them as good as new.

In the 35 years since Glyn planted this seed, millions of tools have made their way into the hands of hard working trades people – in the last 15 years alone over 12,000 kits have been sent to Africa. Since 2010 we have supported over 170 projects, which have provided almost 15,000 people with an opportunity to learn new practical, business and life skills; and as always tools are very much part of this support. Tools to assist with vocational training, tools to boost the work of existing businesses and tools for training graduates who are looking to set up new businesses.

During my time with Tools for Self Reliance I have had the privilege of visiting projects in all of the countries we work in.

With tools in their hands and the skills and knowledge needed to build their businesses, I have heard amazing stories from the people we have supported. People like Moses in Malawi. Having taken part in a project where he learned new practical and business skills, Moses had improved his income and was finding it much easier to pay his children’s school fees. Boosted by this he told me that he and his wife, in their 40s, had decided that they would also go back to school as they had not been able to complete their education when they were younger.

Edith in Sierra Leone trained to be an auto mechanic – I asked her why she had chosen this skill. She told me that there weren’t enough female mechanics. Edith also told me that when she had told her husband she was attending the training, he had told her as a women she did not need to be educated – she did it anyway as she wanted to build a better future for her family.

Caroline in Tanzania was delighted to have learned more tailoring skills and told us that she would now start training other people in her community. “if you educate a women, you educate the whole community”.

There are so many stories that show that Tools for Self Reliance continues all these years on to help people to make real difference in their lives.

This would not be happening without the vision and perseverance that Glyn had all those years ago.

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” – Margaret Mead

“Do your little bit of good where you are; its those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world”. – Desmond Tutu

 

Mary Tolfree – on how Glyn changed my life

I joined TFSR in 1983 because it was near where I lived. I had no great desire to change the world; I had 2 pre-school children and wanted an opportunity to have interesting interaction that didn’t involve gibberish.

Glyn greeted me on my first day and cheerfully showed me my office, a small ramshackle shed you will have passed on your left when you came in. He handed me the accounting records: a few pages in an old exercise book, with a few columns of figures, written in pencil. ‘That’s your filing cabinet’ he said, indicating a huge black fluffy cat sleeping peacefully in the metal in-tray, ‘ Oh, and that’s the petty cash’ pointing to a jam jar on the windowsill containing some loose change. He enjoyed reminding me of that day when I visited him in hospital a week before he died.

I was gobsmacked. My previous job, prior to having the boys, had been with a property company in Piccadilly where my office had a chandelier and my lunch was sent it from Fortnum & Masons. I had a one year contract with TFSR but wondered whether I would survive one week with such odd people doing such odd things like putting tools into boxes. Eighteen years later I was still there! And my family were still asking me when I’d get a ‘proper job’.

In hindsight, I suspect that Glyn, Michael and Mary wondered what on earth they had recruited to take over the administration and finances. My father had been colonel of the parachute regiment, I had played ping pong for the young conservatives….and I had spent much of my youth riding to hounds with the Hertfordshire Hunt. Definitely not a typical TFSR member!

I shared an office with Glyn for over 10 years. Although we didn’t speak gibberish I was fast learning a language that was alien to me. Shared values, partnership, development education, volunteerism, poverty alleviation…and ‘gloop’, the daily lunch.

Glyn never preached nor criticised. He just taught me to see the world in a different way. There was no hierarchy; everyone was equal. He treated everyone with respect and kindness. He made everyone feel special and valued, whether they were a volunteer with special needs or Princess Anne who had just dropped in by helicopter.

Above all he was such fun..and so gifted. When we could bear the cold office no longer, (even bringing in Comfrey the resident goat, to try to add warmth had only resulted in an appalling smell and wet floor) Glyn wrote ‘The Woodburning Stove’ song (which I am sure we will sing later) which won over the supplier and suddenly we had heating! His brilliant song ‘Signode, The Black Metal Band’ yielded unending supplies for strapping up the crates.

I was a bit shocked at first that I was expected to take my turn at making the tea for the volunteers, cleaning the toilets and on one memorable occasion spending a week in a brown overall on hands and knees, chiselling out the gulley the whole length of the warehouse, which was causing the tools trolley to topple over.

My family were getting a bit worried about the new me, and the weird people I was beginning to admire and emulate. The last straw for my mother was when Mauri daubed ‘Up the Miners’ in huge lettering across his workshop wall. She refused to enter the site again and would drop me at the road if I needed a lift lest she became contaminated by that ‘left wing loony establishment’!

Glyn made Netley Marsh such a fun place to work in. I actually looked forward to going to work each day!

Although I had accompanied Glyn to Paris and Brussels in the early years, it was 9 years before I went to Africa and that was for the 1992 conference in Arusha (also attended by Mwalimu Julius Nyerere and Bishop Trevor Huddleston) on partnership, youth unemployment and the need for tools. Two years later I was privileged to go with Glyn and Harry Iles to Accra for the toolmaking Conference which was also attended by partners and blacksmiths from over 20 sub-Saharan African countries. I fell in love with Africa. Several other visits followed due to major donors such as Comic Relief and the EU requiring detailed financial reports of all funds sent overseas.

So, how did I change? In 1995 I joined the Transport and General Workers Union and in 1996 became a paid up member of the New Forest West Constituency Labour Party. I soon became constituency secretary, and in 1998 I stood as the Labour candidate in the local authority elections. I came last but, as Glyn said, I was jolly lucky to come last considering it is the third safest Tory seat in the country!

In 2000 I was invited to join the staff of SIDO, TFSR’s partner organisation in Tanzania. The boys were at university and I was ready for a change after 18 years at TFSR.  In 2001 Colin and I moved to Dar es Salaam. My family, apart from the boys, thought we had gone raving mad. We lived in a government mud hut in the middle of the chaotic city. Occasionally we had water AND electricity on the same day. We washed out of a bucket for seven years. I had long since learned from Glyn that life was not about comfort, wealth and materialism. It is about the dignity of each human being, it is understanding that our family is not just our immediate kith and kin but that we are part of a global family; that poverty and suffering is the problem and responsibility of each and every one of us.

The 10 years we lived in Tanzania were among the happiest and most rewarding of our lives. It would not have happened without Glyn.

Someone once said to me ‘You change one life, you change the world’. Glyn changed the lives of hundreds of thousands of people around the world, including mine. It was a privilege to have known him, worked with him and loved him.

 

David Crawford – offering a toast to Glyn’s life

Ladies and gentlemen, I propose a toast.

Glyn was a dreamer, a thinker and a doer. An idealist. A communicator and a dynamo.

He was a compassionate and committed change-maker  who cared deeply about the lives and livelihood of ordinary people and whose vision promoted a fairer and more just world

Glyn was a trailblazer, a guide, mentor colleague, and a dear friend

Please raise your glasses to honour the life and celebrate the achievements of a remarkable man.

To Glyn!

 

Photos from the Isle of Wight celebration, on June 4th

 

Family funeral, at Portchester, on April 20th 2016.

On a sunny morning close family met at Portchester crematorium. We had brought a sculpture made by Glyn, his ukulele, twigs interwoven by Jim and Linnea and  flowers. Eddie Grimble led the service. Bjorn, Daniel, Adam and Erika all spoke, as did Dorothy Cussens. Magnus read out a poem about a grandpa. We played a video, of Glyn strumming his ukulele and floating along on a raft with Daniel. He sang: “I can’t give you anything but love”. After the funeral we met at Bosham, walked in the bright spring sunshine as a high tide covered the road. We had a lunch and small celebration of Glyn at the Anchor Bleu pub.

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