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‘Right hand man’ conservationist Philip remembered with memorial bench

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Friends, family and colleagues gathered to celebrate the life of a conservationist whose “happy place was to be outside”.

Philip Poll was a “well-known” conservation volunteer who died last year. A bench has been installed near Roydon Common in his memory.

Philip, who was 77 and lived in West Winch, volunteered at the Norfolk Wildlife Trust (NWT) for more than 35 years.

Graham Poll, Julia Mower and Roger Poll
Graham Poll, Julia Mower and Roger Poll

He was also a founder member of the Gaywood Valley Conservation Group (GVCG) and had volunteered at several sites in the area.

Philip was described by friend and colleague John Hayes as his “right-hand man” and that his happy place was to be outside, especially at Roydon Common.

John, who is secretary of the GVCG, said: “He was my right-hand man to advise on ways of dealing with conservation, identifying fauna and flora and encouraging his colleagues in their voluntary work.”

Gathered for the unveiling of the bench
Gathered for the unveiling of the bench

The bench was made at Norfolk Wildlife Trust at Foxley Wood near Dereham, from a fallen Oak tree at the site. It was placed by Gaywood Valley Conservation Group and NWT wardens.

Ash Murray, West Norfolk Reserves manager for the Norfolk Wildlife Trust, said: “Phil made a significant contribution to conservation in West Norfolk over many decades and was an ardent supporter of the Norfolk Wildlife Trust.

“He quietly encouraged many people to take action for nature and was always very generous with his knowledge.

The unveiling of the bench
The unveiling of the bench
Gathered for the unveiling of the bench
Gathered for the unveiling of the bench
Family, standing (from left) Graham Poll, Julia Mower and Roger Poll. Seated are Allen Poll and Victoria Poll
Family, standing (from left) Graham Poll, Julia Mower and Roger Poll. Seated are Allen Poll and Victoria Poll
Roger Poll gave a short speech
Roger Poll gave a short speech
The view from the bench
The view from the bench
The unveiling of the bench
The unveiling of the bench
Andy Macpherson, Sue Carter and Sally Macpherson
Andy Macpherson, Sue Carter and Sally Macpherson
The view from the bench
The view from the bench
The inscription on the bench for Philip Poll
The inscription on the bench for Philip Poll
Philip Poll
Philip Poll
Family, standing (from left) Graham Poll, Julia Mower and Roger Poll. Seated are Allen Poll and Victoria Poll
Family, standing (from left) Graham Poll, Julia Mower and Roger Poll. Seated are Allen Poll and Victoria Poll
Gathered for the unveiling of the bench
Gathered for the unveiling of the bench
Michael de Whalley
Michael de Whalley
Roger Poll gave a short speech
Roger Poll gave a short speech
John Hayes
John Hayes
Gathered for the unveiling of the bench
Gathered for the unveiling of the bench
Gathered for the unveiling of the bench
Gathered for the unveiling of the bench

“He had a profound love of West Norfolk; its people, habitats and landscapes. Like many others, I will miss his wry smile, self-effacing approach and boundless enthusiasm.”



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