We are saddened to have to report the death at the end of June, at the age of 84, of our comrade George Meddemmen. He was born in Camberwell, South London, in 1920 and joined the old Bloomsbury branch in 1947. In later years he was a member of Central Branch living in Rayleigh, Essex. Comrade Meddemmen taught art and design and much of his contribution to the party was in this field, designing for instance posters and the front covers and inside illustrations of the pamphlets on war, Ireland and the miners’ strike we published in the 1980s. Asked last year to record his reminiscences he wrote: “I was on demob leave in 1946 after six year war ‘service’ in the artillery (a number of my works, painted during the Italian campaign, are in the archives of the War Museum) and thanks to Tony Turner in Hyde Park, I learned of the party and joined. Apart from my artwork, I’ve done little of note for the cause. My dizzy heights were reached in the 50s, when I chaired one of the Party’s Sunday evening public meetings in a T. U club in Gt. Newport St, W1. (Those meetings were very well attended, before TV gripped so many people’s bottoms.)” Which shows that being a soldier is not a bar to later being receptive to socialist ideas
We are sorry to also have to report the death in June of comrade Daphne Cottis of Southend who originally joined the Party – in Southend – in 1944. Older and not-so-old members will recall that she often represented Southend branch at Conference, together with her husband Harold (who died three years ago), as well as volunteering to run the literature stall that is always set up on such occasions and maintaining a Socialist Standard round locally. She was also a keen supporter of Southend United football club and for many years acted as a steward at their home matches.