In memory of Guy Mayer 1934-2019

3 June 2019

A tribute to Guy Mayer, who supported our humanitarian work. See our donations page to make a regular (or one-off) contribution.

My father, Guy, was five years old at the outbreak of the 2nd World War.   In spite of his young age, he quickly understood the agonies of war, the disruption to family life and the misery of being displaced. He knew first-hand how hard it was to be forced to move away from his family, but for him, it was only temporary.

He often commented with great sadness how harsh it must be for those who have to flee their homes and country.    Guy was very aware of his personal good luck, and especially in later life, he wanted to do something to help the less fortunate. 

Guy was brought up on the outskirts of Birmingham and qualified as a chartered accountant before coming to London to work at a large firm of accountants.  He soon decided to set up his own small practice close to home, working mainly with community organisations and local charities.  He loved to walk or cycle to his office, just off London’s Portobello Road.  He was heavily involved with the community of North Kensington.  He liked the cut and thrust of local politics and stood as a ward councillor for the Lib Dems - not with great expectation of success!  He was often seen bicycling around the neighbourhood wearing his trade mark hat.

In 2010, he enjoyed a lovely holiday in Syria, seeing the magnificent sights, being beautifully looked after and meeting wonderful people. He much appreciated what that great country had to offer.  The ensuing devastation, destruction and misery of lives destroyed and displaced greatly saddened him.  He was upset and shocked by the change of attitude in Britain towards those who were either seeking asylum or who just wanted to come and work here. He knew that he had been fortunate, and he wanted to give something back to those who had not been so lucky.

Outside work, he had a variety of interests.  Sailing was a huge passion.   He was also a lifelong hockey player and was very proud to play for England in the over 70’s team.  He was a keen walker with an excellent sense of direction, a skill he learnt during a brief spell in the Territorial Army after his National Service. Family life meant much to him, and he took great pleasure in his nine grandchildren, always wanting to know what they were up to!

He worked with lots and lots of community organisations and charities in North Kensington, and believed in social justice. We raised money for Positive Action in Housing in memory of our dad, as you directly support refugees in a very practical way.  I came across Positive Action in Housing a few years ago and hosted two refugees.  My dad met them both.  He was unbelievably friendly and interested in everyone he met; you could not fail to like him -as he was genuinely interested in others, and he appreciated what I was doing - hosting refugees.

Alice Mayer

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