A prominent community figure in Otterton and Budleigh Salterton who won an MBE in the New Year's Honours List in 2022 has died aged 94.  

Gerald Victor Millington, from Otterton died on December 21. Gerald was born and spent his childhood in Hatfield, Hertfordshire. He did his National Service for 18 months in the Royal Navy in the late 1940’s before working at the Midland Bank (now HSBC), starting as a clerk and rising through the ranks to relief manager working in around 100 branches in London, particularly the East End and the South East. 

He was married for 64 years to Beryl who died in April 2021, they lived in Cuffley Hertfordshire before retiring and moving to Otterton in the mid 1988. They both became a big part of village life. Dad was the resident organist at St Michael’s in Otterton and played every week for services, any weddings, and funerals until 2016. He was instrumental in moving the organ within the church and researching the history of it. He continued to have a played once a week till a few weeks before he died. 

He was part of the garden club committee and parish council. Drove the local Red Cross Van for the elderly and volunteered at Fair lynch Museum in Budleigh Salterton. He sang in Exmouth Choir, been a member of the Exmouth stamp club and the PROBUS group. 

Him and his wife Beryl, were involved with Otterton Twinning Association and went on many trips to the Vieux in France and hosted the same family from Vieux for many years. 

They regularly opened their garden in the summer to the public and Dad would spend hours working in it. Gerald also loved bird watching, walking and nature. Stamp collecting was a great passion and has an extensive Channel Island collection. 

In 2022 Gerald was awarded a BEM by Queen Elizabeth II for services to History in a service spanning 33 years at Clinton Estates in Devon as an archivist. 

Gerald began working at Clinton Estates as a part-time volunteer archivist in 1988. He was intent on developing his research in local history and spent the next three decades documenting every item and publishing many books and articles on local history. 

Gerald has also written and released eight books, three about villages in Hertfordshire and five about villages, local walks, and farming in East Devon. On the anniversary of World War One, Gerald conducted extensive research into local soldiers, and their families to write the book ‘Devon Remembers Heritage Project.’