A popular Abergavenny Thursdays player who captained the team to winning the Welsh Challenge Cup in 1951 has sadly passed away.
Robert Curzon – known to everyone as Bob – was a prominent sportsmen and captained Abergavenny Thursdays during some of their most successful years. He played for the Thursdays for several years and rejoiced in the nickname of “Quicksilver” Curzon.
He was born and brought up in Pontypool and joined the army during the Second World War.
He served in Burma as a Chindit in the special forces. The Chindits, known officially as the Long Range Penetration Groups, landed by parachute and glider behind enemy lines to fight the Japanese army in the jungle.
He eventually rose to the rank of Sergeant Major. Whilst serving he played in a number of army teams alongside such luminaries as future England International Tommy Lawton and BBC personality Peter West.
When he returned to South Wales he met and married Usk girl Joan Herbert. They were married for 64 years until her death in 2011.
He was a skilled bricklayer but went to night school and qualified in what was then called Time and Motion management, later Organisation and Management. He worked for 25 years at British Nylon Spinners (later ICI fibres) in Pontypool before moving on to Cardiff City Council and Torfaen Council.
After he retired he maintained his sporting activities, winning awards for both golf and bowls.
He also became chairman of the local branch of the Burma Star Association, organising events for veterans and raising funds for the families of the Ghurkhas with whom they had a close relationship.
In 2005 he took part in the commemoration of the 60th anniversary of VJ Day at Tredegar Park in Newport, reading the words of the famous Kohima Epitaph, “When you go home, tell them of us and say. For your tomorrows, we gave our todays.”
In the 1960s he was commissioned as a lieutenant in the Royal Naval Reserve and helped to run the Sea Cadet Corps unit TS Kittiwake in Pontypool. He also commanded a guard of honour for Prince Charles during the investiture celebrations in 1969.
He died quietly, aged 94 at Abergavenny’s Belmont House Residential Home following a long battle with cancer.
He leaves three children, Jeanette, a retired teacher, John, a journalist and David, a quantity surveyor. He also leaves six grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.