THE family of one of Aldershot’s oldest retailers — Edgar Jerome Ltd — has announced the death of the founder’s youngest son Edgar James Jerome.

Mr Jerome, who was 77, ran the gentleman’s outfitters with his brother Frederick for 50 years, before his son John and nephew Paul took over in the 1980s.

Owing to ill heath, Mr Jerome, a keen Aldershot Town football fan, was unable to attend the Wellington Street store’s 80th anniversary celebrations in March.

His son John said: “He was very proud of the town. He was Aldershot through and through and a real Hampshire man.”

Born in 1925, he was a natural joker, but was also a fine businessman.

John added: “He lived the business; he was there all the time. When he was married he had a half-day off, but he was at work the next day. It was very hard in those days to take time off.”

Edgar Jerome was educated at Farnham Grammar School and served in the Middle East as a RAF radio mechanic in the Second World War. He was married to Mary and became the proud father of John and Shirley.

He collected model soldiers and put military displays in the shop window for the Queen’s Coronation and jubilees.

Football was a great love in his life; he was treasurer of the supporters club of the old Aldershot FC.

John said Aldershot Town FC’s promotion this season had brought Mr Jerome great joy.

“He was over the moon that they were going up to the Conference League. Even though he was too ill to go, he always listened to the reports afterwards. He absolutely loved his football.”

Mr Jerome’s family thanked staff at Frimley Park Hospital for all the loving care and attention he was given. His funeral is on Thursday at 1.45pm at the Church of the Ascension, Aldershot.

Donations may be sent to “Shak Renal Unit Extension Fund” c/o Dr Johnathan Kwan, Director Renal Unit, St Helier’s Hospital, Wrythe Lane, Carshalton SM5 1AA.