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Farewell to Bomber; December 1944 to September 2020

Updated Sep 11, 2020 (Updated obit)
Published Sep 10, 2020
A sad loss to his many friends

The T&RA is deeply saddened to announce the passing of Christopher Griffith-Jones, fondly known to most as Bomber.

Izzy Duncan writes:

"Bomber was a true Corinthian all-rounder. An overgrown schoolboy, in the best possible way, he turned his hand to an array of pursuits with cricket, Real Tennis, Rackets, golf, shooting and his beloved bridge high on the list.

In his later years, he would sometimes throw on his whites to help out my ailing cricket team on a Saturday and poached some steepling catches in the deep. A firm supporter of youth cricket, I could call upon him to coach alongside me at local primary schools and was an instant hit with the kids. Much to his delight, they used to chant his name ‘Bomber’ whenever he turned up.

I have so many fond memories of him: playing together in the Hangover Doubles, watching a test match at Lord’s in the pavilion behind the bowler’s arm, tackling an exploding antique chair in a chateau which didn’t take kindly to him sitting on it…. In the words of Simon Mansfield “a defining moment at Chateau d’Arcangues 2012’ on our real tennis tour of the Basque country. (see top photo). He was affable and clubbable and had friends far and wide at his many clubs at Queen’s, Hurlingham, MCC, Royal Wimbledon Golf, Winchester House Club, Real Tennis clubs all over the world, The Old Cheltonians, to name some of his favourites.

I received an email circulated by a group of his chums at his golf club entitled ‘I’m afraid we have lost a top Slacker/WAF’ with an explanation of ‘Slackers are a Saturday roll-up at Royal Wimbledon known as such for a late start and keenness on a liquid lunch.’ This was Bomber all over and held in great affection. A sad loss and taken too early."

The T&RA also record that Bomber worked for many years to establish the T&RA School and University Sponsorship Scheme and was instrumental behind encouraging school competition to be played at The Queen's Club in more recent years. Many of our current 21-28 players probably picked up a racquet for the first time thanks to Bomber's passion.

Highly competitive, yet sportingly fair-minded were two of his strong characteristics. He had been elected to the Jester's Club in 1993. He had recently been elected Vice Chairman of the local Conservative Association. Bomber's passing leaves a canyon in many great institutions.

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