RIP RON SMITH
UKIP New Forest East
With a heavy heart I pass on this sad news.
RIP Ron, you will be missed by a lot of people and be remembered for having a full life, being a stalwart and the guiding force of the New Forest East branch of UKIP.
Condolences to his family at such a sad time.
The following was sent to me from Peter Day:
Ronald James Smith was born in Aldershot on 30th March 1921. His father was in the army stationed at Aldershot and was badly injured in WW1 losing the use of one of his arms. After Ron’s early years in Gibraltar, the family returned to the UK, first to Belfast and then Farnborough. During WW2, Ron was sent to the Duke of York Military School in Dover, and in 1945 he joined the Royal Engineers where he did an apprenticeship at the Army Technical School. From there he became a regular soldier, but did a Chemical Engineering degree in his spare time.
After the Army, he was accepted as an Industrial Chemist for Research & Development at the National Gas Turbine Establishment in Farnborough. From there he joined the Bahrain Petroleum Company (BAPCO) as an Instruments trainee, but by the time he left he was the Refinery Instruments Supervisor.
He returned to the UK and joined Lummas as a Process Engineer, and later shared the design of all the control systems for Total’s Immingham Refinery. Later he joined Comsys Automation in Paris, but was sent back to the Middle East as a consultant, becoming the Chief Instrument Engineer for Aramco, when he retired.
Ron became involved with UKIP prior to the 2005 General Election, when he became the agent for Peter Day in Southampton Test and Kim Rose in Southampton Itchen. He later set up a UKIP branch in New Forest East (NFE), where he became the Chairman, and was also the agent for Peter Day in the 2010 General Election.
He remained Chairman of NFE until his deteriorating health forced him to pass the Chairmanship over to Phillip Fawkes.
Ron was a real stalwart for UKIP over the last 15 years running the Southampton branch when Colin Cain retired and then the NFE branch, where he organised speakers for open meetings, including a packed hall for Nigel Farage in Lyndhurst prior to the 2010 General Election. He was also a tireless writer to Prime Minister David Cameron and local MP Julian Lewis, as well as the ‘Times’ and ‘Telegraph’.
He will be sadly missed by all who knew him in UKIP.