School: 1958-66

Lived: 23rd March 1947 - 6th December 2020

Ollie (Geoffrey Oliver Cater) was born on 23 March 1947. He was an only son and the family owned and lived at the East Dean garage. He went first to private schools in Jevington and Eastbourne (Nevill House) and in September 1958 to the Grammar School. Some will remember him for his first day scuffle when a guy tried to snatch his cap at the top of the steps. Ollie’s response demonstrated the character that would endear him to his contemporaries throughout his school life, and indeed his whole life.

Ollie was known at school for his poor eyesight, his bottle-top glasses and reading books with the pages close to his face, but none of that inhibited him in his life. He was always known as Biggles due to his glasses. He was well known to Mr Shaw and became a prefect. He had the first motorcycle and first car at school in King’s Drive ; his Ford Zephyr was notorious.

Rugby was Ollie’s thing, but he also played football as an uncompromising defender, and at cricket as an opening bowler. Ollie was a Fred Trueman kind of fast bowler, shirt out, trousers flapping, hair flopping, thundering up to the crease. He was a great sportsman all his life and later became a kingpin at his beloved Jevington Cricket Club.

Following EGS Ollie worked for Shell in London for three years, but he disliked the job and the travelling. Teaching beckoned and he studied PE and English at Culham College, Oxford, although he was also very good at History.

Leaving Culham, Ollie married Angela from Eastbourne with whom he had two children, Marcus and Gemma. He worked at secondary schools in Kent for a while before returning to Eastbourne after his marriage failed. He worked at Hampden Park Secondary School and St Andrews Prep before becoming Director of Studies at an Eastbourne Foreign Language School.

Fate threw him together with Tam, a previous girlfriend from school times; love rekindled, and they married and had many happy years living in Jevington. Tam is a successful author and they spent much time abroad and in the UK researching her books.

Ollie was a great supporter of EOGA – one of the group of 1966 leavers whose reunion in 1991 led to the resurrection of the Association the following year. A big strong man and tough as old boots, but if you really knew him you would know that he had a kind and generous nature underneath that gruff exterior and was a committed family man who loved his children and grandchildren. He fought a long and brave battle against pancreatic cancer but died on 6th December 2020. There is a memorial bench and trees at Jevington cricket club.