Play / pause Sydney Avery

Sydney Avery

  • Josh Levine
  • Interview by: Sydney Avery


Sidney Avery was born in Aldgate in East London in 1909.

He was orphaned at the age of six

and lived in Norwood Orphanage, which was the home

for orphaned Jewish children in North London.

He was there until he was 18

but then, as for so many people, the war intruded

and he was called up in 1941.

He joined the RAF and he was seconded

into the Second Tactical Air Force,

which was formed in 1943 made up

of Fighter and Bomber Command units,

and it was intended to serve in support and defense

of army ground forces.

While serving, he became a specialist in codes and ciphers.

He was first posted to RAF Stornaway

on the Island of Lewis in the Outer Hebrides

and then landed in Normandy on a tank landing ship

three weeks after D-Day; he and his group followed

General Montgomery's 21st Army Group,

supporting the army in the field

as it advanced through northern France, Holland,

Belgium, and northern Germany.

In 1946 Sidney returned to Britain.

He was demobbed and he returned to the law

and he resumed his articles.

He qualified as a solicitor in 1948

and then he set up his own practice, Avery Midgen & Co.

It still exists under a different name.

He retired in 1969 but went back to work two years later

to become the in-house lawyer

for construction giant Taylor Woodrow

as it began its enormously ambitious project

to revitalize London's Docklands.

In his mid-80s Sidney and his wife emigrated

to California to join their only son.

He died in 2010 at the age of 100.

  • Favourite

    You have to be logged in to use favourites.

  • Report

Back to search results

More RAF Stories

Please note our website uses cookies to improve your experience. I understand. For more information see Privacy Notice & Cookies