3 August 1946 – 24 December 2015
It is with much sadness I am reporting that Robbie Richards died on Christmas Eve at the Royal London Hospital. He had bravely borne some months of illness and operations but it was thought he was finally rallying. However he didn’t recover from a heart attack in mid-December.
Robbie and Carol (his wife) owned and ran the Fox Reformed Wine Bar for 35 years. In its heyday, the Fox hosted one of the strongest backgammon clubs in the country. It held regular Monday night tournaments and a hotly contested annual ladder. Large groups of Fox players regularly attended UK and international tournaments.
Not a grandmaster himself, Robbie was a great promoter of backgammon. I am one of many to whom the Fox introduced the game and its many weird and wonderful players and friends including Dod (my husband).
I worked at the Fox for and with Robbie and Carol for nearly 10 years off and on. They remained great friends after I moved permanently to the other side of the bar. He was a local character. I always found him an excellent host, however he did have his opinions and he sometimes failed to tolerate fools. His mind was always on the go, he was full of plans and ideas. But my overriding memory is of his sense of mischief and fun. He was a gentleman and a hoot. I will miss him greatly.
The Fox finally closed its doors for good in February of last year. That was sad enough. Our thoughts now are with Carol, and their children, Alice and Jack.
The funeral is at 11am on 21st January at GreenAcres Woodland Burials, Kiln Road, Epping Forest CM16 6AD. There will be a gathering afterwards in Stoke Newington, venue yet to be decided. Family flowers only, but donations if desired, to The Smile Train charity. If you would like to come along to either part of the day, could you let Carol know (firstname.lastname@example.org); this will help with planning numbers.