The first batch of Ryde's Auxiliary Fire Service volunteers, photographed in the garden of the London Hotel on 3 October 1938. John Percival Clark is in this crowd.

Leading Fireman John Percival Clark of Ryde section of the Auxiliary Fire Service and Ryde Company of the National Fire Service, Fire Force 14d, passed away at the County Hospital, Ryde, on 16 March 1950 aged 62.

 

John, of 12 Star Street, Ryde, served with the Machine Gun Corps (Service No. 102785) in the First World War. He began his war service on December 1915 and despite being wounded didn't return to civilian life until February 1919. Post-war he successfully ran a grocery at 22 Pier Street. Years later he acquired a bakery in Arthur Street and later moved the business to 33 St John's Road.

In 1937 with his business partner Mr H.W. Taylor he formed the firm 'J.P.Clark' and established a bakery and confectioners at 168-169 High Street. His interests included being vice-president of the Ryde Sports Supporters Club, he was also an active member of the British Legion and the Town Club in addition to several other societies.

In 1938 he volunteered as a part-time member of the Auxiliary Fire Service at 50 years old and was listed among the first AFS firemen that turned up for training with Ryde's Chief Officer Max Heller on 3 October that year. He later achieved Leading Fireman and continued to serve throughout the war with the AFS and NFS whilst running his bakery. He left a widow and two sons. The funeral took place at All Saints Church four days later.

Rest in peace Leading Fireman Clark.