Peter D A Toms
Pen Portrait of Peter Toms;
Date of Birth 21st January 1932

Peter was fostered from birth to countless homes. At five he was evacuated to Abergavenny in Wales until he was 13 when he went to live with his mother and step father. He stayed with his mother for a year until he joined the Royal Marines Band Service at the age of 14. He played the double bass and bombardon.

During his time with the Royal Marines he has been around the world twice on ships playing in the band. After passing exams he became a staff bandmaster and was in charge of a band on HMS Lion. In this capacity he has dealt with foreign royalty, ambassadors, consulates and diplomats. He would lead the band in playing when ships came into port, dinners, cocktail parties, concerts, and dances. He would play military, marching, dance band, and classical music.

In 1972 at the age of 40 Peter left the Royal Marines Band and was transferred to the Careers Service in Manchester for the recruitment of young teenagers to join the Marines Band Service. He lectured at schools and colleges over the next two years.

He joined Marstons Breweries, Macclesfield in 1974 as Area Manager managing 64 public houses in the Manchester and surrounding area for 16 years, transferring to Penrith in 1990, eventually leaving Marstons when the Depot closed in 1992.

Peter had M.S. since 1984 slowly deteriorating until the present day. He had short term memory.

Sadly Peter could no longer live at home and in December 2003 moved into Winters Park a care home were he was able to receive the care and support necessary. He continued to enjoy his life and especially the trips out with his wife, June, to various parts of the Lake District.

In June 2004 Peter had a stroke which he never recovered from; He was cared for initially at Carlisle Hospital then moved to Penrith Hospital, Carlton Ward where he remained until his death. He continued in the early days in Penrith to regale the nurses of his time in the Royal Marines Band.

He died on 23rd March 2005.

Thanks for your sad news regarding Peter Dalrymple Abercrombie Toms, an old shipmate of mine we were together in the Euryalus in 1952, crikey, 53 years ago, but my memory of him is that he had a strong Oxbridge accent. He and I shared a great delight in smoking calabash pipes with Balkan Sobranie special strong baccy. He would put his pipe into his tunic pocket whilst it was still alight and ruined several tunics thereby. Lovely intelligent man and the world is poorer for his passing. My Kindest regards to you Richard, ever...

Tom Lambert

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