Uncle served his country and Hooper’s customers

Graham Alland's uncle Bert Quinell is next to the man in glasses
Graham Alland's uncle Bert Quinell is next to the man in glasses

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This picture of staff at one of Portsmouth’s most famous old shops inspired David Pink to get in touch.

The original came from Graham Alland and shows workers in the 1960s at Hooper’s, the tool shop in Kingston Road.

Corporal Ben Quinell in tropical uniform while serving in the Royal Army Medical Corps in India in the Second World War

Corporal Ben Quinell in tropical uniform while serving in the Royal Army Medical Corps in India in the Second World War

David, from Portchester, immediately recognised his uncle, Benjamin Quinell, who is on the right of the man wearing glasses.

David says: ‘Ben worked for Mr Hooper senior before the Second World War. He served in the Royal Army Medical Corps and spent most of his war in India.’

He believes the two pictures of Ben were taken between 1939 and 1942, by which time he had been promoted to corporal.

He adds: ‘After the war Ben married his life-long love, Jean, who I believe he met at Hooper’s. They had two daughters, Fiona (Milmer) and Avril (Edmunds).

‘Ben returned to work at Hooper’s and became the manager of the tool section. When I started my engineering apprenticeship it was Ben who guided me on the best hand tools to purchase, most of which are still in frequent use in my workshop.

‘Ben was one of the most wonderful uncles any child could have asked for. He left Hooper’s a few years before the shop sadly closed its doors for the last time.’