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Brian Alec Timothy Holden 1935-2013

brian_holden

To view further photos of Brian Holden, please click here.

The Tiffinian Association learned with much sadness that Brian Holden passed away on Sunday 19th May at the age of 77.

After leaving Tiffin School, Brian read modern languages at Cambridge and later returned to teach at the School for many years.  He continued to be a strong supporter of the School and the Tiffinian Association throughout his life.

We plan in the fullness of time to commemorate Brian's many years of dedicated service to the Tiffinian community. For now we plan to use this page to share memories of Brian. If you have recollections you'd like to share please send them to Alex Swift via TAL@tiffin.kingston.sch.uk

This is very very sad news indeed. Brian taught me French and Russian in my early days at Tiffin. I also went on one of his week long trips to France to the Chateau Kerfily. An abiding memory. He asked after my parents when I met him even after so many years. He was a good man and always had the interests of the school at heart.

He will be sorely missed.

Phil Phillips (1974), Chairman of Tiffin School Governors

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Over the years I had a steady correspondence with Brian who always showed interest in what I was doing and who shared my appreciation of what Tiffin does to prepare its pupils for success in their work and life. His commitment to the school was inspiring and certainly encouraged me to remain in touch despite the great distance. He will surely be missed by the Tiffin community.

A great loss.    

Frank Webb (1965) D.Phil          
Visiting Professor of the Practice of Public Policy, Duke University, Durham,USA

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I was saddened to hear of the death of Brian Holden, at the relatively young age of 77 (especially compared to his father, who famously defied the bookies to reach 100: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/surrey/6586637.stm). Brian was my form master at Tiffins in forms 1A and 2A (1965-67), and he taught me French and Latin in those two years. In the Sixth Form he also got me through O-Level Russian. At the end of the second year he took me and two others (Martin Gilley and Jonathan Hannam) to stay with a family in France, near Le Mans, driving there in his trusty Skoda, in what I think was the first of a number of such trips for his more promising French students.  Although we may have thought of him as a slight oddity at the time, looking back I can see him as a kind, fair and talented teacher, who successfully ran his classes without recourse to the more "traditional" methods favoured by some at the time. I'm not sure about this, but I believe he may have been instrumental in setting up the school's language laboratory in 1966, and in instituting the distinctly non-traditional teaching of French, whereby we studied the language entirely orally for the first year.

Andrew Taylor (1965-1971) 

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I was in the same form as Brian and his nickname predictably was 'Batty' from his initials. He was a quiet, studious chap, even at school, and well-liked as a classmate. When he became Editor of Tiffnews I gave him every support I could and he made a first class job of it. When he wanted to give it up I'm afraid that assistance could not extend to taking over from over 200 miles away - but he asked me!

Brian West (1952) Founder-Editor of Tiffnews

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Reading the devastating news of BAT Holden's death makes me realise what a gap that will be left in the whole Tiffinian community. I was taught French by Brian during my first two years at Tiffins but he had much more impact on me as the house master of Churchill Gordon while I was House Captain. He also lived in Ewell as I did and would always stop and give me a lift to school saving me the trudge to either bus or train. Many a discussion was to be had during that journey that plotted the rise of the house to Champion status and I still have the Govenor's prize on my book shelf to commemorate that. Brian's association with Cambridge and Tiffins has remained strong ever since and at any time I could phone of write to him and conversation picked up as if we had only spoken the day before.

He will be sadly missed.

Bob Seal (1974)  

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I remember Brian Holden well from when he taught me French in the early 70's. He was then a somewhat stiff, shy man who was nevertheless an excellent teacher and able to command the classroom.  He took me and two other boys for a two week French study trip to stay with a French family - friends of his - in Brittany, where we all had an excellent time, and improved our French. I had been meaning to write to him to say thank you after all these years, and I'm glad I did only recently. He emailed me graciously back to thank me, despite being ill. 

Phil Morris (1973) 

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Known to us underlings as Batty BAT Holden was always a quiet and considerate prefect.  As far as I can remember I was the only scruffy pupil that Batty actually gave three of the best with a slipper!  In recent years I have been in touch with him from South Africa with reference to OTA and the website. 

We will miss you Batty Holden

Roger Newby (1956) South Africa

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I have just seen the very sad news of the passing of Brian Holden.  Whilst he never taught me directly, he was one of those Masters for whom the greatest of respect was afforded by all of us.  

My thoughts go out to his family at this very difficult time. 

Ian McNamara (1990)

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Of course with those initials his nickname was Batty.  There was an unfortunate in my class with the name R A T White - who needless to say was Ratty.  Me, I had an early growth spurt and ended up being Tiny. There was a physics master I liked whose nickname was Maggot - for the life of me I can't remember his real name.

Martin Moore (1958) USA

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This is very sad news indeed.  Brian was both my form and French teacher in the mid-1970s.  I remember him fondly.  In particular, I recall the summer when he drove a small group from our year to Brittany in his white Citroën to spend a couple of weeks at the Château near Elven owned by his friends (they always greeted him affectionately as "Monsieur Hache").  It was a trip full of fun and adventure (and the daily "useful vocab" tests - "Calvados" and "décapsuleur" still remain with me!).  Aside from improving our French and table tennis skills (and almost destroying the family's orchard - but that's another story), we had an opportunity to get to know Brian more as a person and outside of the school environment; he was clearly a good and caring man.  I was so pleased to meet Brian nearly 30 years later at a Tiffin reunion in Oxford, and was both impressed and touched at the clarity of his memory of that trip.  He was evidently a man deeply committed to his vocation, Tiffin School and the welfare of us boys - his charges. 

Adieu, Monsieur Hache!

Mark Sandham (1981)

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I worked with Brian for many years arranging Old Tiffinian Dinners at Oxford and Cambridge. It was a shared labour, but Brian took the leading role. He was distressed when Brigadier Harper once referred to me as his lieutenant, but I regarded it as a compliment. After ill health forced my retirement he regularly updated me on news of other retired colleagues and was a much valued friend.

I shall miss him greatly.

Tom Jackson (staff 1980-1999)

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With the sad news of the departing of Brian (Batty) Holden the Tiffin Community has been left with an enormous hole. I don't actually remember Brian that much at School although I do recall his help in the French Language labs in my earlier years. But I am obviously aware of the tremendous amount of work he did for the Old Tiffinian Association and latterly TAL. Brian was a Past Chairman and Life Vice-President. He was Treasurer of the OTA for some 35 years (I need to check this), worked tirelessly with his life-long friend Dennis Barnard on membership and communication.  Trustee of the Memorial Fund, helped with the 200 Club, took over the Editorship of Tiffnews for many years and became one of the founders of TAL and was a Trustee of TAL when he died. He was always there to help me and other Directors / Trustees with support and advice. From being a pupil to teaching at the School, all his working life Brian continued almost full time connections with the School, even after his retirement, and was still involved with Tiffinian Ltd and Elmfield Enterprises. There cannot be many other people whose life can be said to have been totally Tiffin. 

A true Tiffinian and all round nice guy.  Brian will leave a big gap and will be very much missed by all of us.

Tony Millard, TAL Chairman

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Like others who have written to you about him, I benefited from his professional and well-ordered approach to teaching French, and I, along with Neil Kenny and Michael Price, was one of those invited to stay with his friends the Charette family at the Chateau de Kerfily in Elven, near Vannes in Brittany.  He was very popular with the family (who, it has to be said, had perhaps mroe than their fair share of eccentrics!), who would greet him as "Mister Hache" (ie "Mr H"), or "Misterash" as we thought they were saying until he explained it to us.  I can honestly say that that holiday changed my life; it gave me a lifelong love of France and the French language which, until then, had been no more than another subject to do at school.  But he obviously spotted something in my work that he thought would benefit from being developed, and for that I will always be grateful to him.
 
He was gentle man, somewhat shy I think, but immensely kind.  I did a lot of drama and music at Tiffin and I want to put on record that he and his parents came to everything - plays, concerts, entertainments or whatever else was put on.  Anyone who has ever done any performing of any sort will understand how much it means to have people who come to watch or listen with that degree of loyalty.  It was a quiet, understated loyalty, but it was fully appreciated.
 
He was the only teacher we had (in the 1970s) who taught in a gown.  Brigadier Harper and Mr Roberts wore their gowns for assembly, of course, but Batty was the only master I remember who taught in one.  It had a hole towards the bottom into which some of the more fun-loving in the class (Richard Cotmore, this means you) used to try to insert a foot as he passed; it also earned him with us at any rate the extra nickname of 'Tatty Batty'. 
 
It is obvious from the messages that have already received just how much Brian Holden's kindness and loyalty to the school were appreciated; I am pleased to be able to add my own tribute to theirs.
 
 
Sean Lang (Tiffin 1971-1979)

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The service that Brian gave to Tiffins' was long and absolute ,"ask Brian, he'll know" and nearly always he did. He was appointed Head Boy ex  ordinary prefect in 1955; that was quite  an achievement for in those days a non-school team playing Head Boy was practically unknown. Not that Brian had been idle in previous years, his major  efforts were to look after the welfare of the library, which now could be expanded in Elmfield   On leaving school and having done his national Service he went to Cambridge to read modern languages  and then he went to teach in Wimbledon; when a suitable  vacancy came up at Tiffins' he, not  surprisingly,  applied and was appointed by J.J.Harper, current Headmaster. That was a first facet of his service to Tiffins'.  I know little of his teaching career but from what leaked through he was a good teacher who was always was willing to help a boy in difficulty. Also he took part in school trips particularly to  France a country he loved. 

Already he was doing all he could to bolster the Old Tiffinian Association where over the years he held every office there was to hold, but he was particularly interested in trying to get every leaving  boy to join the O.T.A., a difficult task to put it mildly. Again I cannot detail  what he did in his offices. I remember phoning him at home and as he was usually out at a meeting, so I spent half an hour talking to his father who only predeceased his son, this year, by a few months ,having reached the amazing age of 105. For years he was the editor of Tiffnews and unofficial  archivist looking after the archive room and it was in this category that  I often asked him  for help from the records available there for my own research.  Not only was I answered quickly but also often with detailed answers but also with courtesy which was his byword.  Brian's death has left a massive crater in the O.T. world.  Never again will one man do so much for the school he loved so deeply.  

But  there is no doubt that he was a gentleman, perhaps of the old type, which I type as a compliment of the highest level.  

Brian Bunker 

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I was sad to receive the news of Brian Holden's death, having met him at most of the Tiffin events that I've attended in the past few years.  Brian was my housemaster and also taught me Russian in the sixth form in the early seventies. Forty years later I am still able to read and sometimes understand the written language thanks to Brian. I have a memory of him at the time as the manager of the school tuck shop, and I was one of the team of sixth formers he enlisted to sell sticky buns, chocolate bars and fizzy drinks during break times.  He was fund raising for Tiffin School back then, and he also marketed a nice line in umbrellas!  Brian was one of the masters, as we called them, that I'll never forget: a diffident, intelligent and diligent man devoted to Tiffin School.  

Mike Gibson (1974)

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I was a contemporary of Brian (Batty) Holden and remember him well.  Two instances come to mind.  He sat to my left during our A Level French Literature exam and while attempting a prodigious output, I glanced across, in a moment of respite, at Brian's script. After less than an hour he was sitting arms folded and looking down at his answers, none of which covered more than a page of the booklet. His writing was small and exceptionally neat.  That epitomised Brian in those days;  an individual of measured words, neat and concise. The second memory I hold was visiting him at Downing soon after I went up to Fitzwilliam, Cambridge.  He was still the precise Brian in dress and manner and he was wearing a Tiffin tie! Being at Tiffin Boys' did a lot for most of us, including Brian, but he put back so much more than the majority of the school's alumni.

Rest in peace Batty.  

Geoff Dinkele (1947-1954) 

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I was only at Tiffin School for the first three forms as my father moved away through his job.  However I remember Batty Holden as the Head Boy in my first year.  The fact that I don't remember any other prefects or head boys from my seven years at grammar schools is testament to the positive impact that he had on me.

Eric Hooper (1954 - 1957)

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I have known Brian since I joined the school in 1970, when he was my form and French teacher, and he became a very close friend of my parents too.  Few people can match his longstanding dedication to the welfare of the school, its pupils and the wider Tiffin community, in which he participated fully to the end despite struggling, with fortitude and without complaint, against illness in recent years.

 Ian Barnard (1970-1978)

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Very sad news.  The death of a true Tiffinian.

Rod Bennion

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I was saddened to hear of Brian's death and have many fond memories  of "Battty".  Like some of the others who have paid tribute to him, I too remember him fondly as "monsieur H." I was fortunate to have gone on one of his trips in is beloved Citroen DS to Chateau Kerangat in Brittany one Easter holiday, along with Paul Darby and Mick Ronayne, where we greatly improved our French. It was on this trip that Brian revealed his gentle and very human side. I seem to remember some April Fool's pranks we played on him and which he genuinely seemed to appreciate. 

Brian sparked my love of languages, teaching me French and Latin (and I think Russian)  while at Tiffin. Twenty years after leaving I had the pleasure of  reconnecting with him, thanks to Simon Alpe, and we enjoyed catching up via email and in person on one of my visits to the UK  from California, when he very kindly gave me a tour of the school and even took me to lunch at his favorite Italian restaurant in Ewell. 

I have always thought of him as "Mister Tiffin" for all his dedication to the school which he obviously loved. He will be missed. 

John Kellett ('78)

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Brian ("Batty", as we affectionately knew him) taught me French and Russian in the late 1960s and early 70s. Perhaps with hindsight I should have stuck to modern languages - as my brother, Philip, did - but I decided to do classical languages after O Levels instead and went on to Oxford to study Greats.

I have many warm memories of Brian, but especially of travelling to Brittany in his (as I thought at the time) very swish Citroen - rather upmarket from the Skoda he subsequently had. I was lucky enough, as was my brother a couple of years later, to be selected for a study visit with Brian and two other Tiffinians. We stayed "en famille" at the Chateau Kerangat, speaking only French, at least officially - I think there may have been a few mutterings in English late in the evening when Brian was out of earshot! But it made a great difference to my spoken French - alas it has become very rusty since. 

I remember especially the "Fete" on Easter Monday when we all attended the local carnival, won numerous bottles of vin mousseux on the stalls and consumed same that evening; a sore head the following morning, which Madame la Chatelaine kindly attributed to the unaccustomed "melange" of wine and shellfish; and, during the festivities, Brian exhibiting a soft spot for one of the ladies of the extended family. But, slightly to the disappointment of his pupils, his gallantry remained impeccable!

A loyal Tiffinian for so many years, he will be missed.

Kevin Butler

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I am most probably part of a small group who have known Brian from his time at school right through until his death.
I know that everyone will be interested in the manner by which he took up his Latin studies.  We were both in 4A - George Spriggs was our form master - an experience in itself - I should know as I was form captain! It was two-thirds through his year in 4A that Brian suddenly took an interest in Latin. For me it manifested itself in an unusual way - we cycled down to Worthing for the day - me on my BSA Golden Wings Bike  and Brian - I am unsure - but probably on a Hercules Kestrel Bike. Of course no helmets! We sat down on the beach to eat our sandwiches and I  took out a book to read and Brian produced from his saddle bag a huge Latin Dictionary to read! He informed that he taken up an interest in Latin!
Brian, because of being under - age was along with most  other students in 4A was  unable to take ‘O' levels at the end of the school year (I was alright as I was overage!).  For some reason at this time there was an age limit on sitting for ‘O' levels. However,  he progressed via the Tiffins internal examinations into the Lower 6th Form Arts where he embraced Latin with enthusiasm,  which he never lost for the remainder of his life.

Emeritus Professor David Barker AM Faculty of Law, University of Technology, Sydney, Australia

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When I started at Tiffin in the early 50's, Brian was head boy.  Given his initials, his nickname was inevitably "Batty".  In fact I never knew his name was Brian; in those days Christian names were rarely used.   Between school and university, as was usual,  Brian had to do his spell of National Service in the army for a couple of years. Brian was a studious fellow, so the thought of him being a soldier and sticking bayonets into people required a leap of imagination quite beyond me.  If I remember rightly, there was a cartoon in a contemporaneous issue of the Tiffinian -1954 ish.  

Dave Lee 1953-60

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Brian was my form teacher for the first two years at the school and he also endeavoured to teach me French. Having known him ever since, I have sometimes wondered whether he wore that gown as a drily humorous nod in the direction of his nickname. I can remember how it billowed behind him as he walked from our form room to the language lab, reminiscent of Batman.   I too went to France with him, in his crimson Citroen DS, which was a brilliant car.  I recollect the novelty of  vin rouge at dinner and the odd aperitif on the basis of it being very culturally appropriate.   In later years my brother (he also went on such a trip when we were at school) and I revisited Kerfily in a battered old mini traveller, and saw him there with (I think) some of his eleves. We were beyond his care and responsibility by that stage and ended up, fairly well oiled, shooting empty bottles by the chapel wall with some sort of artillery which could have been left there since the war.  Perhaps he never fully disclosed to parents that such activities took place, but they made those trips quite an adventure, and we saw quite another side to him; relaxed and far less serious than the classroom persona!  

He has been a good friend of our family, he even drove us in his huge Bronze Citroen when my wife and I were married.  He was with us at Christmas and presented presents wrapped in the same old paper that he used every year, having bought vast quantities ages ago. He was ill but pressing on as usual regardless.   He coped with illness much as you would expect; with stoicism and dignity.

Clive Bernard 

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I am saddened by the news of Brian Holden passing away. Brian was my form teacher and taught our French classes during the two years I spent at Tiffin School (1972-1974).  I was one of the first two Japanese students to enter Tiffin, with its difficulties of its time.

I have only fond memories of Tiffin and spent my formative years there constructively, in large part due to the fairness of kindness of Brian. I remember Brian as being firm, but supportive and an exemplary motivated teacher.

I kept in touch with Brian through the years and we exchanged Christmas cards every year (Brian always on time, I not). I did not receive a card from him last Christmas and was worried.  I received an e-mail thanking me for my letter this March, which turned out to be the last time I was able to exchange communications with him.  I met him in London once after leaving England, about 25 years ago; one regret I have is not visiting and seeing him again. I will miss him deeply.

 Kenichiro Aoki (Tiffin 1972-1974)

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We became colleagues when I joined the staff in 1970. In those days our paths didn't cross a lot as I was a scientist and he was a linguist, but in the early 80s I started to go to the Tiffinian dinners at Cambridge and I remember, on my first visit, he found me a room in his old college, Downing. From then on we increasingly had more to do with one another with regard to boys who went to Oxbridge as I was very much involved in preparing boys to Oxbridge for physics or engineering.

We really started to work together in 1988 when he became part of my finance team when I became responsible for the school's finances as Deputy Head. Always reliable and giving a lot of attention to detail he dealt with the private funds of the School. This close working was to continue after my retirement when I took over the chairmanship of Tiffinian Ltd and he was our treasurer/secretary, a position he filled until his death. Our other close association over the same period was when, at Tony Dempsey's instigation, I set up the first electronic database of the Old Boys. Brian was a mine of information and this is something we are all going to sadly miss. Printing labels and lists of Old Boys was not one of his strongest points, so for years every three months he came over to my place so that we could do this for the next issue of Tiffnews or whatever, and caught up over a cup of coffee. Sheelagh and I will miss those visits as we all will miss him in the Tiffin community.

 Just a few thoughts, but I could say a lot more...

 Howard Watson

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 Although I was more or less a contemporary of 'Batty' Holden at school (1947-55), and we probably overlapped at Cambridge (I was at Trinity1955-58), it was only much later that I came to appreciate his immense good nature and thoughtfulness. That's because more than thirty years after I had left the school he took the trouble to track me down, I can only imagine via telephone directories, and wrote asking if I was the Roger Felstead who had been at Tiffins in the 1950s.  If so, would I be interested in attending the reunion dinners held every five years for those of us who had gone on to Oxford and Cambridge?  I was indeed, and I have always enjoyed meeting him on those occasions for a chat.  On one occasion, after a good dinner at Wadham, I remember roaming around the college with him, hoping to find somewhere to enjoy a few more drinks before calling it a night.  Perhaps not everyone's idea of 'Batty'.  At our last meeting, in March 2011, I had a feeling that he was perhaps not in good health, and I feel now that he was already ill at that time.  He was a good man, and like many others, I will miss him.  

Roger Felstead

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Brian's passing must surely be one of the saddest events for the Tiffinian community and particularly for the "alumni" of the last several decades for Brian was in many ways the OTA personified. Several contemporaries have already said things which I could have said myself - I too was one of the chosen few taken to Kérangat one Easter and can corroborate the tales of what a warm and fun-loving man Brian was despite the somewhat dry and austere persona he donned in the classroom.

I am sure this was indeed simply his way of managing his shyness. I remember "Bert" Seaborn walking along the corridor one day and calling out - in his usual boisterous manner and at the top of his voice - "How now, Bats?" in front of dozens of pupils, startled that anyone could dream of calling Brian by his nickname in public. Brian simply smiled, replied politely and went on his way, totally unruffled.

My contemporary, Sean Lang has mentioned the entire Holden family's unfailing support to everything in the way of music and drama and another old friend, John Kellett, has told of our April Fool's day pranks whilst we were at Kérangat - but I also remember that we managed to make fools of ourselves by getting the wrong day, blacking up the bedroom door knob with shoe polish on March 31st! Back in the UK, whilst waiting to drive off the ferry, Brian made use of the hydraulic suspension of the DS - I think this was the light blue version of the "Batmobile" - to lift us higher than a Rolls-Royce next to us: the car's occupants seemed a little taken aback but we were delighted and in fits of laughter at being able to look-down on them.

Having lived in France for all my adult life, I received a surprise visit from Brian a few years ago when I was living in Burgundy and he followed this up with a kind invitation to a restaurant that he knew, not very far from my home. On this second occasion we talked about our respective Citroën Xantia cars - I have never been a great "car man" but I am sure that the memories of Brian's Citroën were of inspiration to me: unfortunately I have never had the chance to draw up next to a Rolls-Royce.

Paul Darby, Clermont-Ferrand, France (1978)

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Mr Holden drove a really cool old Citroen DS - the "BAT-mobile" as we used to call it (after his initials of course!)

David Larsen, pupil 1976-1981

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I was so glad to see Brian Holden at the summer 2011 reunion at school. He was my form teacher 1968-70 and taught me French and Latin.
I had no real talent for either at the time, fair to middling in French, probably worse in Latin. Latterly, his efforts have come home to roost.
I appreciated his demeanour, his Citroen car and his patience. In 69-70 we won a day off for 2C having sold the most programs for Tiffin Fair and we played cricket on the school field.  A small example of  good memories.

Fondly remembered,

Ray Gillon

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He was a figure my Father, John Roberts, the former Head, greatly respected, as I did as a pupil in his form 1D, longer ago than I would care to admit! 

Peter Roberts 

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So sad to hear of the death of my old classmate of the 50's.  He was a good friend of the dear old school. 

Laurence Lewis, Tiffins 1946 - 1953

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I have very fond memories of Brian and working with him during my time at Tiffin.  He was a true gentleman and always totally professional in his approach.  He was a mine of information which I found most helpful in my role.  I'm very pleased that I saw him the last time I visited Tiffin.

Rooie Thomas  

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O rare Brian Holden! 'Bat', 'Bats' or 'Batty'. as he was inevitably - though affectionately - called because of his initials, was my friend and classmate through eight years at Tiffins (1946-48). 'Batty' he may have been, but he was anything but daft. He was a quiet boy, who concealed a basic shyness beneath a mask of calm unflappability. He had a sense of humour, but expressed it with a smile, never roars of laughter. A bright pupil, studious in class, his efficiency and sense of organization made him a superb school librarian while the quiet firmness of his personality made him a likeable and respected prefect - and ultimately the head's choice for Head Boy.

As we all know, Tiffins became virtually Brian's life, for, apart from a brief period of National Service and a short year or so at another school, he returned to Tiffins and stayed the rest of his life. Others have already paid trbute to the various posts he held at different times in the O.T.A. His involvement with school affairs continued long after his retirement - possibly too much so, some of us sometimes felt. I remember several occasions when I have phoned Brian's number, to be answered by his nonagenarian (but sprightly) father, "Oh, hello, Michael - no - Brian's out at the moment, but you'll catch him at the school if you ring there"! 

Once during a phone chat Brian had grumbled about having to rustle up three obituaries at short notice with a Newsletter deadline approaching. I asked, jokingly, if it would be sensible if we all put our own obituaries on file for instant access when the time came. Brian said, with no trace of a laugh,"Well, that would save me a hell of a lot of bother". I am sure that Brian did not file his own obituary and I am sure too that he would be amazed - and probably embarassed - by the huge number of warm tributes that have come in so far from Tiffinians of every generation in remembrance of a man who has become a legendary Tiffinian.

Michael Webb (Tiffins - 1946-48)   

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Brian's quiet and unfailingly loyalty, gentle encouragement and self effacing hard work coupled with his lifelong love of Tiffs mark him out as one of the greatest servants of our community.
May he rest in peace and rise in glory. In Christ
Fr. Robbie Low (1969)

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I will remember him as a long standing friend for whom nothing was too much trouble, but above all for his outstanding contributions to so many Tiffinian activities - School and Old Boys.  In so many ways he kept the ship afloat over the years .  Irreplaceable!

John Glasscock (1946)

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I have many memories of Brian, and these are just a few:  Muscadet chez Mariannique, going up and down in the Citroen DS, his ancient tennis racket ("de la tante"), "a tout a l'heure", dropping by for a carefully-measured instant coffee in room 14 (or, more precisely, in the office piled high with papers within room 14), tuck shop stocktakes, Oxbridge reunion dinners, OTA dinners (at which he had more achievements that most for which to stand up and "take wine"), OTA social lunches, a simultaneous chess match (as organiser, not player), some obscure vocab (such as "otorhinolaryngologiste" and "prestidigitateur") which I have yet to use. 
Brian was kind and dignified, and did a great deal beyond teaching me O-level French and Russian, and I am immensely grateful to him.

Peter Robinson (1982)