The Off Beat Post

The Off Beat Post



Thanks to all of you for joining this venture.

Over 150 recipients so far but spread the word please for more.

The May Edition is included as many have joined since it was circulated.

The success of the Newsletter will rely on yourselves to send your stories and experiences so don’t be shy!!
Post or email is fine. AND include photos where you can!!!

Some of our friends are not on email. Could you print the newsletter for them? Depends where they live but it would be handy to have a few volunteers.


You can look at old copies of THE LAW newspaper via the Essex Police Museum website. They are hilarious and worth it!!!

In the April 1969 edition, it states the number of officers on each division on Amalgamation and another article stating the Rent Allowance was going up to £6 per week!!!!

Also some very odd car and human bodies one may think!!!

The Southend Sea Swim 1969.

When the sea was not so clean apparently these guys donned cosies (no Speedos or mankinis thank goodness!) and swam from the Lady Saville at Leigh to Westcliff Jetty about one and one-third miles.

I see Colin Saines, Mick Hollyoak, Les Johns, Peter Yorke Wade, (The Winner) and Malcolm Briggs.

Recognise Anyone Else????

Did we really drive these cars????

Mental Health Amongst Us

It was Mental Health Week 16 to 20 May.

This coincided with an article in NARPO News Magazine and a survey that 65% of 800 retired officers suffered from some mental health problems.

In this case our profession has a worse mental health problem than the Armed Services!

I have to deal daily with the problems of post traumatic stress disorder.

I know that am not alone with this.

Many of us and our families have to deal with other mental health illnesses and disabilities on their own.

Alzheimers, dementia, strokes and all their various types affect others in ways that we could never imagine.

Fit and healthy friends of only a few years ago are having to deal with the problems and rely on the understanding and love of our families and close friends to help with even the smallest of day to day tasks.

There are so many ways that we can help each other.

I would like to feel that this newsletter may be used to bring, those who want to, together in individually acceptable social meetings.

If you would like to meet up at any time or place suitable to you then let’s start a conversation going to organise venues and people with like needs.

I am prepared to coordinate the coming together of groups.

Let me know your thoughts and ideas.


It would not be fitting if I failed to mention that 75 years ago many of our former colleagues took part in the D Day Landings of June 1944.

Our friend and fellow pensioner, Eric Carter now in his 95thyear, volunteered for the Royal Marines on his 18thbirthday.

He had already served in the Essex Regiment Signals Home Guard from the age of 16 years. (John Graves another Southend Boy also served in the Home Guard)

From then on he trained for the next two years at Lympstone, Devon, Scotland and Slapton Sands on handling landing craft making ready for the eventual assault on the Normandy Beaches.

On 6 June 1944 he landed many hundreds of troops onto Queen Red Sector on Sword Beach Normandy. Making several landings Eric now reflects on the experience and firmly states, “Don’t call us heroes! We were just doing what we had to!”

Two weeks after completing his task as a landing craft coxswain, Eric served the remainder of the War as a Royal Marine in the Far East.

Eric found it difficult last week during the commemoration period of this amazing feat of bravery and loss of so many lives and privately remembers the experience.

I am sure you will join me in saying a huge “THANK YOU” to Eric and all our other friends and colleagues who served in the World War.

Next year will be the 75thAnniversary of the end of World War 2.

I am certain that there are many other stories to be told about our friends who served our country during this period.

Please send me photos and memories so that I can include a fitting tribute to all those who made it possible for us to live the lives we do today!

Eric at 16 years of age in Home Guard Uniform

Eric at 16 years of age in Home Guard Uniform

Eric Carter 95 The Off Beat Post

Eric at 94 taking it easy at home

Send me your photos and memories so that I can include a fitting tribute to all those who made it possible for us to live the lives we do today!


At our stage of life it is so important to look after ourselves and get as much help, support and advice as to how we can to deal with the aches and pains of mature life.

Over the years I have been lucky to get such help from a variety of people and organisations.

When I first went down with my problems Mick French was a rock of support as we cycled for miles and talked and talked. In later years he taught me how to calm myself and using breathing techniques helped me tremendously.

Karen Turrell, my daughter and Lisa Gosling, Dave Westoby’s daughter set up a Health and Well being Company called Simply Stride that help me and many others of all age groups to cope with the physical and mental problems that hit us in life. Giving me confidence and core body strength showing me a better path to follow.

I will tell you more about these people in further issues.


Dorothy and I love our garden and I know there are many of you that share the same passion for the colour and satisfaction that our greenery provides.

Ours is constantly being improved and redesigned as we try to plant yet another plant that, “we will find a place for!!”

The roses in the front garden are a delight at this time.

Here are some photos I think you will enjoy.

Please send me your photos and if you have any advice or experiences to share feel free to let us all know.

The Off Beat Post Garden
The Off Beat Post Garden
The Off Beat Post Garden
The Off Beat Post Garden

A Postcard from:

I would like you all to share your photos and stories of a holiday or where you now live so that we can all enjoy the experience.

I will start things off by telling you about the wonderful week we had in North Wales.

Staying at The Riverside Hotel at Betws y Coed we were centrally placed for touring the area.
Visiting Caernarfon, Llandudno, Portmeirion and even climbing to the summit of Snowdon (by train of course).

The Off Beat Post Wales
The Off Beat Post Wales
The Off Beat Post Wales
The Off Beat Post Wales

We would highly recommend the Hotel for a stay in the Snowdon Area. Wonderful staff, beautiful rooms, good food and peaceful stunning gardens with picturesque walks along the riverbank.

For more info see the website on Snowdonia or contact direct at Craig-Dderwen Riverside Hotel Betws-y-Coed LL24 0AS tel. +44 (0)1690 710293

Drivers Wanted

Southend NARPO Welfare

The Branch are setting up a pool of volunteer drivers for less able members to attend various appointments and other requirements.

Full details can be obtained from Dave Seago (details below in Useful Contacts) who is organising the service.

Rainbow Trust Children’s Charity – Essex

Volunteer drivers required for various duties

Check out their website Rainbow Trust for details of the charity and if you can help Contact Sarah Raven Lloyd on +44 (0)782 560 1360.

Future Events

The Essex Police Pensioners Garden Party 2019

Essex Police Sports Association Pavilion,
Police Headquarters on :-

Friday 2nd August 2019 at 2 p.m. for 2.30 p.m.

Contact Sam Barkway at

Old Cops Club Reunion Lunch

Southend Rugby Club
Sumpters Lane
Southend on Sea SS2 5RR

1.00pm Friday 30th August 2019

Cost £15 per head Send Cheques made payable to:

The Old Cops Club
27 Chase Gardens
Westcliff on Sea

Another Reminder!

This newsletter is about you, and its success relies on your input.

My contact details are below and I look forward to hearing from you.

Useful NARPO Contacts

Southend Branch

Chairman Fred Simpkins
+44 (0)1268 459 185

Secretary Peter Yorke-Wade – Peter Yorke-Wade
+44 (0)1702 624 217

Membership Secretary John Coyle
+44 (0)1702 527 455

Welfare Dave and Hilary Seago
+44 (0)1702 526 583

Social Secretaries Mike and Lyn Beaveridge
+44 (0)1702 529 985

Chelmsford Branch

Sue Heaton –
+44 (0)774 884 8393

Colchester & North East Essex Branch

John Tingue –
+44 (0)125 581 3102

Copyright © *2019 BOB CRAVEN, All rights reserved.
OFF BEAT POST – Newsletter for Retired Police Personnel

Our mailing address is:
20 Marcus Chase Southend On Sea Essex SS1 3LG

Contact Bob Craven or text +44 (0)7884083641

The Off Beat Post