We are sad to announce that Leonard Bate (94C) passed away on the 8th March 2023.
After starting his RAF career in Ground Radio Fitter Apprentice Training (Locking), Len left Cranwell as an Electrical Engineering Officer starting at Neatishead, West Drayton and Benson (Tactical Communications Wing (TCW)).
As OC B Flight/OC Ops on TCW, this included a detachment to Peru as a member of a team monitoring the fall-out of French nuclear testing. Following TCW’s move to Brize Norton, in May 1977 Len was posted to Leuchars as JEngO 43(F) Sqn (Phantoms). Len’s experience on the Phantom led to a tour as OC Phantom Aircraft Development and Investigation Team at Coningsby before returning to Cranwell in May 1981 as an Avionics Lecturer.
This was followed by three years at Swanton Morley as Tornado, then Tucano Project Team Leader.
In November 1986, he was SEngO 17(F) Sqn before an MoD posting as Project Officer for the Tornado Aircraft Mid-Life Update Programme. March 1991 saw Len return to Cranwell again as Departmental Head for Avionics, Electrical and Computer Studies before his final posting to Brampton as Project Officer for Market Testing of RAF Engineering Support Units.
Len retired from the RAF in March 1996.
Len started an equestrian photography business but, during this, he also entered local politics starting as a Waverley Borough Councillor and, alongside various charity and hospital roles, ended up as Mayor in 2008!
Len died in the loving care of wife Merrill and his daughters Lauren & Genevre
and at the end of a life filled with duty, diligence and with love.