Albert Leonard Dobson (5 Jan 1922 - 7 Jun 2014)Share obituary on Facebook
- St Mary Magdalen Church Bermondsey Street London SE1 3UW
- 24th Jun 2014
- Funeral Director
- F.A. Albin & Sons
- Honor Oak CrematoriumBrockley WaySE4 2LW
- 24th Jun 2014
- The Angel Pub101 Bermondsey Wall EastRotherhitheSE16 4NB
- 24th Jun 2014
In loving memory of the late Albert Leonard Dobson who sadly passed away on 7th June 2014.
It is very hard to encapsulate in a few words anything that will give you an insight into my lovely Dad, but I will try. Why use 20 words when 2,000 will do? Anyway, these "few" words are for you to glean what you can of the man who was my Dad.
My Dad was a Royal Navy gunner during the second world war... protecting the Atlantic Convoys. After the war he tanned hides for a living, running across the lime pits, with the dripping (stinking) hides on poles; his hands calloused and stained with tannin bore witness to his labours. Dad went on to become a Messenger at Lloyds Bank, and then Night Security at Barclays Bank, Lombard Street. He would leave home at about 6pm each evening and walk to the city -whistling as he went on his way. He would return the following morning, still whistling a merry tune, as he arrived back home - after a long night shift.
My earliest memories of Dad are of him swirling me around the dance floor at Dovercourt holiday camp. I couldn't dance (still can't really!) and was about 5 years old, I think. The Palm Court Orchestra played..... the stage lights glistened and twinkled. I stood on his feet as he led me around the floor..........revelling in the excitement.......basking in the glory of dancing with my handsome Dad. I always felt safe with him.......I feared nothing when I was with him.
His humour and strength of character was and will always be the mainstay of our family. So many stories and unforgettable anecdotes will remain with us.....to cheer us when we are feeling the miss of him.
Singing songs was his forte'......using his hands to drum a beat on the table. He would entertain us with songs from long ago....'It's a long way to Tipperary,' 'Bring me sunshine,' 'The sun has got his hat on,' 'Knocked 'em in the Old Kent Road,' 'My Old Dutch'.....the list was endless. Dad would sing 'The Galloping Major' and 'Here we are again, happy as can be, all good pals and jolly good company....' These songs were sung to me as I rode on the cast iron rocking horse in Spa Park.....songs that were sung to us all on holiday journeys...there and back.
Sunday mornings we would walk to the Tower of London via Shad Thames, and along the dockside where we would feed the ravenous seagulls. Dad said that you could find your way home by the aromas coming from the warehouses. Mr brother Tony's poem evokes these memories (Memories of a nose -see below) ...when I read that poem I am transported to another much lovelier time and place.
Dad loved and enjoyed his family with a passion. He loved nature, good food and many a fun filled family holiday with the lovely Whitfields. Holidays where Uncle Bill crammed us all into whichever vehicle he owned at the time......the Morris Minor (bulging at it's seams), the Austin Cambridge, Ford Transit and Volvo Estate. Our late, much loved, and lamented Uncle Bill and my Dad were the very best of friends, and closer than brothers.
On one of our country holidays.......Dad and Uncle Bill had caught a number of fish. Ever practical Dad found a source of fresh water on some private land. He proceeded to gut and clean the day's catch. (The fish would be cooked on a camping stove.) A rather refined lady asked him what he had caught (possibly thinking he was a Poacher).....he said: "A load of Pollocks" She misunderstood his reply, scurrying away, shocked and stunned. I often wonder if she ever discovered that Pollocks were fish.....and not swear words.
Dad was knowledgeable about so many things and knew how to make good use of nature's bounty. We would go mushrooming at dawn, when holidaying in Devon. On one occasion we popped into the village dairy to purchase some butter to cook our freshly gathered mushrooms. Someone in the queue, in a strong Devonshire accent said "Got any mushrooms Mrs Pooke?" and Mrs Pooke said: "Nah, some buggers been up the top field and 'ad the lot!" You had to get up early to catch MY Dad out.
Dad was an incredibly talented artist.......working particularly in oils. He loved and appreciated Opera, Classical Music and Jazz. He loved Millwall, Manze's Pie Shop, Seafood, a good Port, and had happy memories of Hop Picking down in Goudhurst, Kent. Whilst his older sister Daisy was helping out with the adults ....he would be off making bows and arrows, camps in the woods and generally having a fabulous time. He even dug his own toilet in the woods ......... the communal toilets for the hop pickers weren't quite up to his standards. He was strong, resourceful, imaginative, practical, good hearted and knew how to appreciate the simple things in life.
I could go on forever (I can hear you saying "but you have!!!") about my lovely Dad......but I will stop now....I promise.
Suffice it to say that he was my loving earthly Father, who I trust is in the strong, loving and merciful arms of our loving Heavenly Father.
BERMONDSEY - Memories of a NOSE
Roasting COFFEE exotic TEAS carried on the river breeze
Down cobbled streets and arches dim, imported WINES - export GIN
PEPPERS, SPICE and LEATHER HIDE on the south the Bermondsey side
Where WILLOW WOOD and SOUPS all mixed, were impregnated in the houses bricks
MALT from BARLEY, HOPS from Kent, pungent VINEGAR from the chimneys vent
JAMS and CHOCOLATE, fresh BISCUITS baked - Aromas of far eastern DATES
PEPPERMINT, ANISEED, COCONUT sweets - drifting down the narrow streets
CUSTARD and JELLY did combine with CORK and ROPE and SISAL TWINE
Copper vats of fresh brewed BEER competes with GLUE upon the air
PERFUME for a lady's wrist, Canadian CORN - the miller's grist
The grinding stones within the mills, the moaning grains upon the wheels
Ingredients borne on wind and surf from every corner of the earth.
All brought together here by sea - to the factory that once was BERMONDSEY
By Anthony Michael Dobson - aka Dobbo ©