Dad left school at 14 and later joined the RAF on National Service, then, after marrying mum in 1952, he joined his father-in-law in his tailor’s shop in Fulham where he rose to the principal suit maker and showed his real talent.
My father was an astute businessman and, recognising a good opportunity, purchased and ran several properties up till very recently, always bemoaning the ones that got away!
Church Street shop
In 1968 mum took a table in an antiques shop in Church Street (Edgware Road not the posh Kensington) and dad got roped in with no choice.
After marrying in 1973 and moving to Bournemouth I started supplying mum in the shop and that was the start of all the Ardinglys and Newarks – with dad doing all the driving at 3am with trailer in tow, often in freezing weather but never complaining, only happy to be helping mum and I in something we loved – anything for a quiet life!
Around that time, with Fulham becoming vacant, dad let mum and I open an antiques shop on the premises called Remains to be Seen and that lasted a little while until we became involved with fairs at Olympia and the Decorative for many years.
Dad was dad always on the scene, loading and unloading, painting walls, getting coffees – anything he could do to help, always referring to himself as the unpaid helper.
He was super proud that mum and I held our own at the major fairs in London. He was particularly interested in anything to do with the Second World War, as he lived through it, and watched the old films over and over again as well as the news all day long.
Dad was completely unflappable while all those around him were in a spin and we never once heard him swear. He always erred on the side of kindness, giving others the benefit of the doubt.
Dad came down to live near me in Bournemouth for the last year and that meant we spent a lot of time together and were able to visit mum easily in the care home down there. We even managed to squeeze in a family holiday to his beloved Mallorca in August where he enjoyed many happy times with mum.
For dad life was full and rewarding and he had the most wonderful nature, always smiling, great sense of humour, extremely generous and always doing things for others putting them first. Above all he was hugely proud of all his family and these last two lines of my daughter’s poem to her grandpa at his burial really sums him up: From tough beginnings he rose to success
But being a grandpa was what you did best
From daughter Jan Keyne (Town & Country)