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For ex-cadets, students & staff of the Warsash Maritime Academy, founded 1935 as The School of Navigation & the Warsash Superyacht Academy

Ian Chalmers (1952)

Ian Chalmers was born on 2nd March 1935 in Dulwich and attended school in Cheam, Glasgow and Worthing before joining the School of Navigation for his cadet course in 1952. He went to sea with Blue Star but was forced to come ashore later due to his eyesight at which point he became an Articled Clerk with a firm of accountants in London.

Ian subsequently joined Debenhams spending 25 years in various account and administration roles. He had an active interest in church youth work and the Scouts. In 1961 he married Jennifer who was involved with the Guides. Later, after moving to Taunton in 1967, Ian became District Commissioner for Scouts, working with Baden Powell's daughter Betty, who was Guide Divisional Commissioner.

A further move with Debenhams saw the family relocate to Edinburgh where he worked at the company's offices in Princess Street. Ian became an Elder at Dunfermline Abbey. During and after the Falklands war he helped to support navy personnel separated by the conflict and faced with long periods away from home.

In 1983/84 the family moved to Goring where he took up the post of Company Secretary and Administrator for the wholesale and retail operation of the Scouts Association in Lancing.


He and Jennifer became members at St. Columba's. Ian became involved in district and synod affairs, as well as becoming an Elder at this Church. He was District President for Sussex West and convenor of the Synod's Church & Society Group, as well as one of the Trustee's for the Brighthelm United Reformed Church & Community Centre Project.

Scouting played a major role in Ian and Jennifer's lives. Ian's involvement as a Scouts Association employee led to Regional, National and International discussions as well as voluntary work as County Chair for West Sussex Scouts. He received a number of awards, culminating with the Silver Wolf, and only last year both Ian and Jennifer were involved in helping at International world Scout Jamboree in Sweden.
Ian's interest in youth work had continued during his years in Sussex. He became chair of his local Neighbourhood Youth Committee and monitored the rebuilding of the 'Rosie' in Littlehampton Road. He was an advisor to the West Sussex Council for Voluntary Youth Service and took an active part in promoting youth work at the South of England Show.

The news of his incurable illness at the beginning of this year and his sudden death on 27th July came as a shock to all who knew him. He leaves a wife, Jennifer, who like himself, is very involved in scouting, a son and daughter Duncan and Moira, and three grandchildren, Hollie, Ella and Callum, all of whom he was very proud.

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