|Bob Deeley, St George in a trilby.|
The most memorable election broadcast in the European elections of 2004 was, without doubt, the UKIP broadcast which featured an elderly sailor slapping a lederhosen clad Austrian with a wet fish. So bizarre and eye catching was this scene it even made it on to the BBC 'Have I Got News For You' programme. The famous fish slapper dressed in a sou-wester was the West Midlands Stourbridge UKIP member, Bob Deeley.
Sadly, on Friday 9th November 2012, Bob passed away after a period of ill health and yesterday, Friday 7th December 2012 I attended his funeral, he was 93. He had lived a full and varied life. His first trade was as a metallurgist, which he did until he reached his early forties, then, suddenly, he had a complete change and was accepted as one of the first students to be trained at Newark College in the art of violin making and repairs, an occupation he continued until he reached the age of 70 when he finally retired.
Bob was also a talented musician; he played the viola in several orchestras over the years and had a great love of music.
When war came he served his country in the Signals and made his way across Europe as the Allied forces advanced, eventually serving in Germany after they surrendered. From speaking to him he had a great fear of another conflict, which was one of the reasons he first joined the Referendum Party then UKIP in 2000 - he worried that the undemocratic actions of the EU would be the cause of another great conflict, which at the time of his death we are beginning to see with the unrest in Greece, especially as they suffer economically due to the problems created by them joining EU's euro.
Bob will be much missed by many in UKIP, not least at UKIP events in the West Midlands where he was always made welcome and appreciated by our members. He always had a twinkle in his eye and would catch out many a speaker during questions as he never failed to have an unusual and intelligent question to ask - added to which, there can never be another UKIP election broadcast to match the famous fish slapper of 2004.
Bob leaves behind his long time partner Barbara Gillian, who he always called Gill. At the Torquey UKIP conference they were both presented with a joint gold medal for all the hard work and time they had given to UKIP. Bob also leaves behind a son, Simon, and nine grandchildren.