Bernard Billington – Died 31st January 2015
Bernard, ably supported by his wife Kathleen, had been a staunch member of the Civic Society since its early days and he regularly contributed his well-considered views on most subjects discussed at our monthly meetings.
Probably the highlight of his achievements as a member was the fact that it was he who first suggested that the Civic Society should endeavour to get the Queen Victoria statue removed from the Station Walks and returned to a more appropriate site in the town. He also introduced us to his friend Wilf Burt, the stone mason who eventually oversaw the safe transport and re-erection of this statue in the Queen’s Gardens. Bernard personally paid for a new sceptre to replace the original one which had been stolen.
Bernard suffered medical problems in his later years, exacerbated by the rather sudden death of his much loved wife, but although no longer able to attend our meetings, he retained his interest in the society’s activities to preserve and enhance his beloved Newcastle to the end.
Bernard saw wartime service in the RAF, during which time he was “mentioned in despatches”. This was followed by a career in the insurance industry.
A man of high standards and integrity, his contributions to the work of the society, and his friendship with those who remember him will be greatly missed.