The life of … George Tucker
Born: 19 May 1919
Died: 24 April 2010
Married: Jean, Jo
Children: Ken, Mary
Occupation: Chief Security
George Tucker, who joined Bristol & West Athletic Club on 1st January 1940 and became a Life Member, has died at the age of 90. He worked all his life for WD&HO Wills and retired 25 years ago as Chief Security and Fire Officer. He lived in Bedminster for many years and moved to Nailsea on his retirement. He was also a winger with Bristol Rugby Club, for whom he played 85 first XV matches between 1945 & 1950 scoring 29 tries – along with Roy Muller.
Roy met George for the first time playing school matches in 1933-5 and recalls, ‘George played for Redcliffe School and I played for Whitehall School. We played against each other on several occasions – culminating in the Bristol Schools Championship on an Easter Monday at the Memorial Ground.’ George then joined WD&HO Wills in 1934 followed by Roy in 1935. Before the war, George was a member of Imperial Athletic Club and won the Somerset Championships in 100 & 220 yards.’
George was in the Searchlight Regiment of the Territorial Army when war broke out in 1939. He was in anti-aircraft command, trained as a commando and finished as a sergeant in the Army Physical Training Corps. Roy adds, ‘We both left Wills to join up. We met fleetingly once on Paddington Station in 1944, just having time to say “Hello, how are you”? In 1946 we both returned to Wills and began to play for Bristol Rugby Club. Cleeve Rugby Club opened their new pavilion on 31st August 1946 and Bristol RC was invited to play a friendly match. That night George, Ted Sheldrake and I had to attend Bristol Royal Infirmary as a result of our injuries. George was unlucky with injuries and this restricted his appearances. We still played against each other – in Somerset v Gloucestershire county games. I lived on the north side of Bristol, so played for Gloucestershire, while George, on the south side, played for Somerset.’ George was in the Bristol side which travelled to play a combined Nantes & Cognac XV in France in 1947 as part of the Armistice Day Commemoration. When his playing days were over, George was a regular supporter and a volunteer steward for many years.
George was one of B&WAC’s auditors in the 1970s and was previously the Treasurer. Tony Hurley, who as Treasurer used to take the books to George in Nailsea each year, knew George quite well and remembers, ‘George was a sprinter with Bristol AC and did the ‘sports circuit’ in his time – Bristol Police Sports, Bristol Aero Sports and Douglas Sports. I remember George being presented with an illuminated address by the club in recognition of what was probably 60 years membership, this was at one of the dinners which he organised – possibly in 1995 to celebrate Fred Hill’s fifty years. George was himself a Club member for just over 70 years.’
The funeral is at Bristol South Crematorium Bedminster Down, Bristol, on Wednesday 5th of May at 12 Noon, followed by a wake at The Town & County Lodge, which is about a half mile down the A38 in the direction of Bridgwater.
There is a photo of George in the Club History photo gallery.