Alan Spaul (1945 -2009)
FAREWELL TO A GENTLE GIANT
We first met Alan on induction day at Holloway Comprehensive School, in September 1957, as we waited to be registered and allocated to 1U2. Already he was bigger and taller than the rest of us and little did we know at that time he was to become a lifelong friend, both on and off the sports field.
A genuinely gentle person (I never, ever, saw him lose his temper) his height was always an embarrassment to him and he would stoop to try and hide it. He was polite in conversation, always a good listener and contributed sense and perspective when needed – persuading me to avoid many a confrontation (JC).
As a teenager his passion was cricket (and Arsenal football club) - although he was interested in all sports. No teenage angst for Alan, he just cruised gently through his school years – a friend to all. He would never rise to exhortations to use his height and weight and 'put it about a bit', although it was fun to follow him through the Arsenal terraces – a smooth journey as the crowd parted in front of him.
Alan was a passionate supporter of the Old Camdenians, distinguishing himself on the cricket field and latterly excelling at his mid - life passion golf, where he served on the committee of his local club and won many handicaps at the annual OC's golf day (about which he was unfailingly modest).
We have many happy memories of away - days to many a sports match since he was one of the very few of us who had access to a car, (his father ran a second hand car showroom and Alan had access to the pick of the motors).
To his family and friends his smile, gentle manners and wry sense of humour will be a great loss, as will his unfailing support for the Old Camdenians.
John Chandler, Paul Coffman, Michael Bartley, John Bradford