Claude Eastes, who died on 25 January 1984, was born in Reigate, Surrey on 8th May 1919.

In April 1939, with the war in the offing, he joined the Territorial Army and served with the 42nd Battalion Royal Tank Corps.

He was soon selected for Officer Training, and in November 1940 was appointed to a Commission in the 7th Queens Own Hussars.

Shortly afterwards he joined the 7th Hussars at Abbasia in Egypt, just as the Regiment was leaving for service in the Burma Campaign, and later in India.

He subsequently served with the Regiment throughout the Italian Campaign, during which he held the appointment of Regimental Signals Officer.

In 1947 Claude was appointed Adjutant. Later that year he organised the move of the Regiment back to the U.K. where he continued as Adjutant until June 1948, when he was appointed to the Staff as G.S.O.3. HQ Catterick District.

In 1950 he was selected to become Senior Instructor of the Wireless Wing at the RAC Centre, where his quick brain and technical aptitude earned him great respect. As a result, he was selected for Technical Staff Training at the RMCS Shrivenham in 1955. From RMCS he was posted to the Fighting Vehicle.
Research and Development Establishment, where he remained until rejoining the Regiment at Tidworth in 1957.

He continued to serve with the Regiment as Technical Adjutant up to the time of the amalgamation in 1958 when he decided to retire. His technical ability and training were to have a great bearing on his subsequent successful career in civilian life.

In 1958 he joined AEI Ltd. as reactor manager of their Nuclear Research Project, a post he held up until 1963. During this period he became a “Fellow of the Institute of Nuclear Engineers”.

In 1963 he joined Fiat of Italy in a similar capacity on the Fiat Nuclear project, where he held various appointments in the nuclear field.

In 1976 he transferred to the Flats Laser research project where he remained for some years until later becoming a consultant on Lasers in both the Industrial and Medical Fields.

Claude returned to England in 1982 and his home in Mortimer, Berks. where he lived happily with his wife Anne, whom he married in 1956, and his two charming daughters. He was always a keen athlete and became an accomplished skier. In his early days, he was a keen Rugby Footballer, representing the
Regiment on many occasions. He was also a Life long member of the Old Reigatians.

He was devoted to the Regiment and seldom missed attending the Officers Dinner and the Old Comrades reunion, even during his long periods abroad. He will be sadly missed.

Related topics

  1. A short history of The 7th Hussars
  2. Timeline: Middle East (Egypt and Libya)
  3. Timeline: Italy 1943-5