Vic Miller

MANY warm tributes to the late Victor George (Vic) Miller, 83, formed part of the thanksgiving service at St Bartholomew's Church, Royal Wootton Bassett, the town where he was a popular, respected resident for many years.

Vic, born on St George's Day 1935, was originally from Cheam, where he gained his lifelong enthusiasm for the Scout Movement. He contributed to many activities, especially Scouting, Rotary, Probus and the Wilts & Berks Canal. His record of service to others is inspiring.

Early memories by a cousin recalled youthful happy Christmas celebrations at Cheam, Vic's love of cruising, his amenable nature and his generosity.

Vic joined the Wootton Bassett Scout Group in 1973 when his job with Burmah Castrol was relocated to Swindon. Wootton Bassett was fortunate that he made his home locally. Having started as an assistant Cub leader, he progressed to be Group Scout Leader, a post he held for 18 years, during which the new Scout HQ at Muddy Lane was opened in 1979. Subsequently Vic served on the Group executive, where he continued to benefit boys and leaders.

Former colleagues recalled successful, memorable camps and trips, a visit to Holland, Vic's enjoyment of swimming and the galas he organised. One tribute said: "He will always be an inspiration to the many Cubs and Scouts who passed through his cub pack and group." His fine influence set an impressive standard of excellence.

Vic worked for 30 years on the Wilts & Berks Canal, as a keen, active member of the local branch. He was involved in liaising with local authorities, and also had a major role in the trust's publicity, through displays and major canal events. His last canal boat, the Nonsuch, was launched at the Waterways Festival in Wootton Bassett in 2002. Sadly, Vic did not get to walk along the recently opened stretch alongside the Biffa landfill site, a project he had worked on from the beginning.

The St George's flag and many photographs were given central place at the service, which honoured a man who is sorely missed, but is remembered with much gratitude.

Cremation had taken place previously, and after the thanksgiving service, light refreshments were served in church, and the family took Vic's ashes to All Cannings, with those of his mother.