Rear Admiral Phillip Edwards C.B. L.V.O
We are sad to report that Rear Admiral Phillip Edwards C.B. L.V.O., a most distinguished resident of Boars Hill, died at his home on 12th December 2014. A Thanksgiving service was held at Wadham College, Oxford on Friday 13th February 2015.
Phillip Edwards was born in 1942 in Llanelidan, Denbighshire son of the late Robert and Dylis Edwards. He embarked on his naval career as a 15 year old Royal Naval Reserve cadet in the training ship HMS Conway. In the next 33 years his career progressed with alternate appointments at sea and ashore. In total he served in a battleship, an aircraft carrier, 2 cruisers, 4 destroyers, a frigate and last but not least, for 2 unforgettable years, in Her Majesty’s Yacht, Britannia as the Commander (E).
In 1977 whilst a member of the Royal College of Defence Studies he was amongst the first group of western military officers to visit China since the Revolution in 1948. Following 2 years as Captain of the Operational Sea Training Base at Portland he was promoted to Rear Admiral and in 1980 became Director General of Fleet Support (Policy and Services). During the Falklands War he had particular responsibility for the logistical aspects of the campaign and afterwards for evaluating the lessons learnt. Some hundreds of recommendations were made concerning the design and operation of warships and their equipment.
He was made an LVO (Lieutenant of the Victorian Order) in 1970 and an ADC to her Majesty the Queen in 1980. In 1983 he was awarded a CB (Companion of the Order of the Bath) and retired from the Royal Navy at the end of that year to become a Fellow and Domestic Bursar of Wadham College, Oxford. From 1988 to 1994 he was chairman of the university’s Committee of Domestic Bursars. On his retirement as Bursar he was elected an Emeritus Fellow and served for a further 5 years as Development Director.
He and his wife Gwen had 3 daughters who produced 7 grandchildren between them. Their much loved daughter Lynn died in 2002. The Admiral, along with his wife, was Welsh speaking and maintained strong connections with the principality. He was a member of the Health Policy Board for Wales for 5 years.
He was President or Vice President of several ex-service and cadet organisations in Oxfordshire and the wider Midlands. He was a liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Engineers, a Freeman of the City of London and a Trustee of the Oxford Preservation Trust. He was a Fellow of both the Institute of Mechanical Engineers and the Institute of Management and an Honorary Fellow of the Institute of Technical and Scientific Communicators. His recreations were golf, travel and tending his garden on Boars Hill.
The above obituary was prepared, with acknowledgement, from a biography on the website of the Oxford Preservation Trust