(22 October 1930 – September 2020)


David Mander was born in Oxford in 1930.  He went to school in Summertown, North Oxford and gained a scholarship to Magdalen College School (MCS) in 1942.  Inevitably his early teenage years were much influenced by the War but as he once said, “We didn’t know any different so just got on with it.”

At MCS he met his future wife by chance.  In 1947/8 MCS agreed with St. Faith’s School for Girls that the two sixth forms should meet for a dance; this was considered very daring at the time.  He and another were sent beforehand to be “vetted” by the St. Faith’s headmistress and the girl who opened the front door would much later become his wife.

In 1949 he was called up for National Service in the Royal Artillery and posted to a training regiment on 25 pounders in Oswestry, Shropshire.  He liked to travel so with his final free rail warrant he went to Edinburgh and Dundee.  On discharge from the regular army he joined the local TA unit.

He wished to become a town planner but there were no educational opportunities in the UK at this time.  So he joined the Royal Insurance Company and then Legal and General.  He enjoyed the work and studied in his spare time for 3-4 years to become an associate of the Chartered Insurance Institute.  Gradually he broadened his knowledge and experience and climbed the corporate ladder to become a staff manager.  His new appointment meant travelling the whole country until he retired in 1990.

He was very active in amateur dramatics in Oxford and particularly enjoyed performing Shakespeare in the college gardens.  He was also a parish councillor and organised his village’s celebrations for the Queen’s Silver Jubilee in 1977.  Later he wrote the village emergency plan which was a requirement at the time but thankfully never called upon.

Much of his spare time was devoted to the TA.  After his National Service he joined the Intelligence Corps, began to learn the skills and arts involved in the interpretation of air photographs and soon qualified as a Photographic Interpreter.  His principal role was in support of the Harrier Force in Germany during the Cold War.  He rose to command 21 Intelligence Company (V) before retiring in 1985 as a Lieutenant Colonel.

In retirement he acted as a volunteer guide with the National Trust at Stowe School.  Ultimately he moved on to become a tour guide at Bletchley Park which he thoroughly enjoyed.  He also served on the Medmenham Club Committee and as a museum trustee at Chicksands.

His wife, Sue, pre-deceased him in 2012.  He is survived by his three sons, Arnie, Tim and James.