Daughter pays tribute to ‘very caring’ Second World War veteran Arthur Jolley
The daughter of a Second World War veteran from Ipswich who has died aged 104 has paid tribute to a “very caring and kind father”.
Arthur Jolley, who served in India, North Africa and Italy, where he worked in prisoner of war camps, died last month.
He was a father of four, grandfather to 10 and great grandfather to seven – with one on the way.
Irene Pickess, 62, of Ascot Drive, Ipswich, said: “He was just a down-to-earth man.
“He wasn’t one to boast about anything. He was just a very hard worker and for his age was in very good health up until last September.
“We were very fortunate to have him for so long.”
Born in Framlingham in 1910, he joined the Suffolk Regiment in Bury St Edmunds in 1930, and served during the Second World War.
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“He was very quiet about the war,” Mrs Pickess said.
“He never really spoke very much about it. But gradually, as the years went on, we did find out a little more information.
“He hurt his ankle in the war so he didn’t actually go on active service. I think the Suffolk Regiment went out to Singapore, but because he had hurt his ankle he had to go on lighter duties, so he was actually taken to North Africa and Italy, where he looked after German prisoners during the war.
“He was very proud to have served and he loved wearing his medals. He wore them when he was 100 and laid a wreath on the Cenotaph in Christchurch Park. That was a very proud moment for us as a family to see him do that.
“He was very proud to have laid that wreath.”
When he returned to Ipswich in 1945, his first job was at Paul’s Felaw Maltings alongside the old Ipswich Docks.
Speaking to this newspaper when he turned 104 last year, he said: “I feel very lucky to have reached this age. I have always been active, which is the key.”
Mr Jolley, who also lived in Renfrew Road, Ipswich, remained a keen gardener and snooker player.
Mrs Pickess added: “He was a very caring and kind father. He looked after us very well and worked very hard throughout his life.”
When turning 100, Mr Jolley donated his birthday money to East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices to help the charity build its Treehouse House centre in St Augustine’s Gardens.
“Soon after, he was asked to go along and meet the Duchess of Cambridge (who visited the centre in 2012),” Mrs Pickess said.
“They shook hands and he spoke to her. It was a proud moment for him to meet someone from the Royal Family.”
Mr Jolley died peacefully on February 6. His funeral was held at St Andrew’s Church, Rushmere St Andrew last Monday.