Bob Batts died suddenly and unexpectedly on 28 September, aged 66. His partner of 40 years, Brenda, was with him.
Bob was very active in Birmingham Anti Nazi League and the Socialist Workers Party in the late 1970s and early 80s.
A couple of memories from that time. Tina Gallagher remembers how we took a coach of School Kids Against the Nazis to the Leeds ANL festival.
We were all dancing away to “Enjoy yourself, it’s later than you think” with The Specials. The school children hurried off to catch the coach, but we adults said “it will wait for us” and danced on.
Bob laughed and said, “The coach has left”.
In those days we did Friday night pub sales and Bob and I did a paper sale in Handsworth on the night of the riots in 1981. We were arrested and handcuffed together in the van.
After that Bob’s career as a psychiatric nurse was cut short and he eventually had to retrain and find other work.
Bob had become a psychiatric nurse after experiencing the trauma of his mother’s mental illness and death. He cared deeply for his cousin Mandy who has Down’s Syndrome and for Brenda’s niece, Hannah, who has cerebral palsy.
Bob was a kind and lovely man with an infectious laugh and always a twinkle in his eye. He loved music from punk rock to Gustav Mahler. He was a compulsive reader, walker and a sports fanatic.
Bob left the party but remained a lifelong supporter.
He will be very sadly missed by a large and loving family, children Daniele and Izak and grandchildren Bianca, Osaze and Chijioke. His partner Brenda is an active member of our branch and we send our love and sympathy to her.