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Patricia Amy Somerville (née Johnston)

02 July 1923 - 18 September 2016

Born Patricia Amy Johnston in Edinburgh.

Educated in Edinburgh and as a boarder at Wycombe Abbey School for Girls in High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire.

July 1940 returned to Edinburgh for a course at The Edinburgh College of Domestic Economy.

1941 volunteered for service in the WRNS and posted as a cook at the naval shore station in Tobermory, Isle of Mull.

1942 promoted to Leading WREN as cypher communications clerk  at various shore stations in Scotland.

1945 posted to British Joint Staff Mission in Washington.

On release from war service in 1946 completed a two-year degree course at Edinburgh University.

Summer 1949 employed as cypher clerk with GCHQ at their then HQ at Eastcote near Ruislip, which involved learning Russian.

Memorial somerville-patricia-amy-1-resized
Patricia Amy Johnston as a Wren in 1944


Resigned on marriage 15 September 1950 to David Somerville from Edinburgh, a civil servant in the Ministry of Health after war service in the Royal Artillery ending as Major.

They lived in Manchester and London before moving to Fetcham, Surrey with two daughters and two sons, where Patricia was active in charitable work for Shelter and for Citizens Advice Bureaux (CAB), for several years as their county coordinator.

In 1976, on David’s retirement as Under Secretary in the DHSS with CB, they moved to Dorking where David died on 19 November 2002.

Patricia spent her final years in a care home in Dorking and died suddenly and peacefully in a nursing home in Rowhook, Horsham.