Tributes paid to Exmouth’s Jack Skinner

PUBLISHED: 15:02 14 November 2017 | UPDATED: 15:02 14 November 2017

Jack Skinner

Jack Skinner

Archant

Jack Skinner, who was born in Exmouth and was a descendant of Nancy Perriam, the famous Exmouth naval heroine who served as a ‘powder monkey’ with her husband on board various ships in the Napoleonic wars under Admiral Lord Nelson, has died aged 85 after a short illness.

Tributes have been paid to born and bred Exmouth man Jack Skinner, who died aged 85, after a short illness.

Jack was born at a property in Clinton Square, Exmouth, in 1932, the only son of Edward and Mabel Skinner and brother to two sisters, Betty and Majorie.

Their father, a petty officer, was one of the first Exmouthians killed in World War Two. Edward Skinner died aged 51 in November 1939 when his ship HMS Rawapindi was sunk by German battleships in the North Atlantic.

His family said Jack was ‘very proud’ to be a descendant of Nancy Perriam, the famous Exmouth naval heroine who served as a ‘powder monkey’ with her husband on board various ships in the Napoleonic wars under Admiral Lord Nelson; the Wetherspoon pub, on The Parade, Exmouth is named in her honour.

Jack, whse life was steeped with maritime history, was educated in Exmouth and left the old grammar school in Gypsy Lane in 1947 to start work as an apprentice boat builder at Dixons.

Later he fished for a living and also volunteered on the Exmouth lifeboat crew. In 1952, Jack completed his national service with the Royal Navy.

Jack met his wife Marian Tozer, from Exeter, at the old Regal dance hall in Imperial Road, Exmouth; they married in May 1953 and had 59 happy years together. Marian died in 2012, aged 77.

The couple had a daughter, Linda, who lives in Teignmouth, and four sons; Martyn who runs an engineering business in Exmouth, Michael lives in Perth, Australia, and Simon and Ian – known as Chubb - are both Exmouth ceramic tiling contractors.

Jack and Linda enjoyed being grandparents to 15 grandchildren and five great- grandchildren.

Throughout his life, Jack was employed in a variety of jobs; a painter and decorator and a coach driver for Greenslades coaches.

He ended his working life as communications officer and desk clerk at Exmouth police station, in North Street.

In retirement, Jack enjoyed fishing on his boat Donna with his sons and friends, and more recently spending longs periods in Lanzarote with Marian.

Jack died in Teignmouth after a short illness.

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