Ben Probert passed away on the 14th August 2016 aged 86 years.
Ben joined the Bristol Fire Brigade with his brother Richard Probert, in 1958 & both went on Training school a Speedwell under D O Osborne & Sub O Sandy Sandell. They were both posted to Bridewell on opposite watches, both Ted Rudd & Bill Bates were separated to accommodate them! Ben was promoted to Leading Fireman. in 1966 & resigned in 1968. He was at one stage told he would never be promoted as he was too scruffy! He emigrated to Oz. worked at the Eldo tracking Station in far North Queensland for two years this was followed by his appointment to the colonial service as a Kiap in Papua New Guinea (a form of governor) in charge of an area the size Gloucestershire. He retired from government service, joined a gold prospecting company as Quartermaster, this was still in the Highlands of New Guinea. He finally retired into what was his childhood home. Ben had an almost photographic memory which of course helped him with those wonderful Manuals of Firemanship. Following his retirement he loved to travel & visited most of the world. He donated his collection of memorabilia from Papua New Guinea to Bristol City Museum.