We are very sorry to announce that David Rear, a dear friend of the Society and a stalwart committee member, died just over a week ago (not, as it happens, from the corona virus). This is a deep and sad loss.
On behalf of the committee, our Chairman Peter Shallcross wishes to record our appreciation for the huge contribution David made to the Society, and to the cause of conservation more widely in the local area.
Apart from the natural world and conservation, David had wide ranging interests; everything from aviation to music and sport. He had a passion for cricket (he was a member of Surrey Cricket Club) and soccer (Wycombe Wanderers where he spent his early years, later Chelsea), a taste for musicals (a particular fondness for Doris Day), for Dad’s Army, and for cryptic crosswords.
He retired to Tisbury after a career teaching in west London, during which he took part in and helped organise numerous voluntary conservation projects and acquired a diploma in conservation and ecology. His arrival on the committee fifteen-odd years ago greatly strengthened the Society, in particular its campaigning on conservation matters.
A quiet and modest man (the photo of David at the Community Day in the Nadder Centre had to be taken surreptitiously!), he had a prodigious memory and would happily help less experienced companions, teaching them to identify all they saw or heard. His particular passions were birds and butterflies. He frequently led excursion trips for members (a favourite place was Grovely Wood) and he spent countless hours working on the conservation of the adjacent Oysters Coppice.
We shall miss him, his knowledge, campaigning zeal and perseverance, attention to detail, experience and ideas, enthusiasm, sense of fun; above all, the person he was.
If it's not me, Elizabeth, website editor (keen but ignorant), I'll say so.