Heartfelt tributes paid to former Lancashire police chief and community stalwart

Ribble Valley MP Nigel Evans has led tributes to Pendleton resident Mr Anthony (Tony) Ormiston who died aged 82.

Tuesday, 16th June 2020, 3:45 pm
The late Anthony (Tony) Ormiston

A retired police chief inspector for Lancashire Police, in his early years Mr Ormiston was in the Coldstream Guards, an elite Foot Guards regiments of the British Army, for seven years.

During his career in the police, Mr Ormiston was involved in policing high-profile incidents, which included outbreaks of violence during the 1981 Toxteth Riots and the Miners' Strike.

Described as a "great friend", Mr Evans paid tribute: "Tony was a giant of a man in more ways than one. He served Her Majesty the Queen during his life, both as a Coldstream guardsman and in the Police. He was a font of knowledge on the history of the Victoria Cross, and those who have been awarded it, and spoke regularly across the country to groups on the subject.

"He was a stalwart of the church in Pendleton, and was the instigator behind a memorial in Pendleton, to those who had died in the two great wars. Without his assistance that memorial would never have happened. He was such an influence on me and such a great friend that I said prayers for Tony in the Church in the House of Commons during the time of his funeral. "He will be sorely missed by everyone who knew him."

Born and brought up in a little picture-postcard village called Wetheral, on the outskirts of Carlisle, Mr Ormiston attended the local village school in Wetheral and then a commercial school in Carlisle. Upon leaving school he joined the Coldstream Guards where he attained the rank of sergeant. Active service included periods in the Middle East, while ceremonial duties included Buckingham Palace, Tower of London, Windsor Castle and taking part in the annual ceremony of Trooping the Colour - the parade to mark the Queen's official birthday.

A family spokesman said: "He was incredibly proud of this period of his life and maintained a life long connection, serving over 40 years as the secretary of the Liverpool branch of the Coldstream Guards Association."

After leaving the army, he joined Lancashire Constabulary and served for 38 years performing CID/uniform roles across the county. His first posting was Widnes on a department known as Task Force - this later became the subject of the popular 60/70's TV show "Z-Cars". Prior to retirement in 1997, he was chief inspector responsible for force welfare.

Mr Ormiston's funeral service took place this morning (Tuesday) at All Saints Church, in Pendleton, and due to the coronavirus pandemic, there were restrictions to a small graveside service only. However, the family plan a memorial to celebrate his life at a later date.

He is survived by his son Julian, stepson Tim, daughter-in-.laws Jane and Amy and granddaughter, Tabitha.