Brian Pink: wildlife enthusiast and photographer followed his interests round the globe

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Brian Pink in the El Yeso Valley in Chile in 2004

WILDLIFE enthusiast and photographer Brian Pink has died at the age of 77.

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A retired painter and decorator who previously worked as a milkman for Edgars Dairies and Lavender Farm, Brian was an avid traveller who had visited all corners of the globe to pursue his interest in bird watching and nature.

Born in Lymington in June 1941 to parents Fred and Peggy Pink, Brian had a brother called Norman.  His childhood home was in May Avenue and he attended Lymington infant and junior schools before moving on to secondary school in Brockenhurst.

As a young man Brian was part of Lymington Rowing Club and the water polo team based at the town’s sea water baths. He was later a member of Burley Golf Club

After leaving school he worked at Lymington Post Office as a motorcycle courier delivering parcels, before moving on to become a milkman at Edgars Dairies in Keyhaven.

Brian met Carole, whose parents ran a pub, when they were teenagers and soon after their wedding, they became parents to Stephen in 1962, followed by Jason in 1965 and daughter Justine in 1967.

After living in Broad Lane, Lymington, the family moved to a larger home in Park Road, Ashley in 1969.

At this time Brian was still working as a milkman and after completing his rounds he often spent the afternoons undertaking other odd jobs such as gardening and delivering turf. He later established himself as a painter and decorator working for private clients and undertaking contracts for Hendersons Letting Agents in New Milton.

Brian and Carole separated in 1973 and Carole then decided to emigrate to New Zealand with four-year-old Justine, leaving Stephen and Jason to live with their father.

Brian was an avid reader with a lifelong interest in military history and memorabilia, which led to research and then an 80-page book on the history of Motor Torpedo Boats and other military vessels that were constructed at Lymington’s Berthon Boatyard during the war.

In the book, published in 2005, Brian traced the history and events surrounding a number of Berthon-built coastal forces crafts which were deployed to Greece, Turkey, Sierra Leone, Burma and China during and after the Second World War.

Brian was also an avid traveller and regularly visited far flung destinations to photograph birds and nature.

Son Stephen said: “My father had the most amazing collection of photographs as he would go off on these incredible trips three or four times a year. He had been everywhere – Africa, Chile, South America, the Caribbean, India.

“He had told me he would only be going to Norway and Finland this year but when I started going through his papers, I found out he was also going to Madagascar as well.”

The garden of Brian’s home in Ashley was immaculately maintained and filled with colourful blooms.

Brian was taken ill suddenly just before Christmas, and died on Boxing Day. He is survived by his three children, eight grandchildren and one great granddaughter.

His funeral will take place at Bournemouth Crematorium on Friday 18th January at 2pm. As Brian loved flowers, floral tributes are welcome.

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