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Wednesday, 16 February 2011

...And more condolescences from close friends Anna and Charles, Chris Abram and the Hamiltonss

Ray will be remembered for a long time as a truely inspirational birder. He did not keep his enthusiasm and enjoyment to himself, he shared it with all of us. He was optimistic, upbeat, knowledgable, kind and very very funny. Many a newcomer to the hobby will have gone home from a day at Dungeness inspired and encouraged because Ray had engaged them in conversation and explained things to them. As a friend he was warm, generous and interested, as a husband utterly devoted.

We will remember some classic often hilarious moments, a hot rum and coffee offered from his flask on a freezing wet Scilly sea watch, a day the three of us spent trapped on Bryher in torrential rain with just a snow bunting for company, and a moment others may remember when during one of the many sea watches shared at Dungeness a glorious close flock of poms had a particularly well endowed huge individual fourth in line. " Sabrina " Ray called out, and Sabrina flew on.

We were so privileged to be two of his many friends (Anna and Charles)

''I am still coming to terms with the tragic news that Ray is no longer with us. Annie and I will miss him more than words can express having been his friend since 1976. He was, as others have pointed out, a quite unique person, a caring and very loyal friend and a loving, dedicated husband. His sense of humour was fantastic. One story I’ll share with you. He used to travel frequently across to France to buy wine. Once he told me that when he entertained he started off by giving his guests the 50p stuff. It was only after the first bottle that he started on the cheaper stuff! Dungeness will truly never be the same again and we are devastated for Janet and can’t imagine what she must be going through as I write this. However, I’m sure that she will be comforted by the support and love of her many friends when she returns (Chris Abrams, Sharrington, Norfolk)

Hello Lee. We would like to add our sincere condolences to Janet for the terrible loss of Ray. We have many happy memories of Ray on Scilly and also at Dungeness. Whenever we went to Dunge we would always pop round for tea and cakes with Janet and Ray, or even a beer or two in the garden if the sun was shining! Ray and Janet always made us so welcome and we would admire Ray's paintings as well as his models (of which we have 4 or 5, as well as earrings). Our only sighting of a Camberwell Beauty butterfly in the UK was on the white buddleia in Ray's garden. Ray was always happy to share his knowledge of local birds and will be sorely missed by all who visit Dungeness. It was a sad day when he gave up visiting Scilly in October as he was always ready to impart information on his CB radio. We're sure many people have very fond memories of Ray and will also miss his presence seawatching and trying to point out the Purple Herons. (Chris and John Hamilton)