SOUNDS & SEA: Frank Revill with two items which sum up his life - a bugle and an Endeavour calendar.
SOUNDS & SEA: Frank Revill with two items which sum up his life - a bugle and an Endeavour calendar. Alistair Brightman

THE STORY OF: Frank Revill

HE'S brushed shoulders with more members of the British royal family than most and spent much of his life at sea.

Frank Revill's life has revolved around the ocean, from serving in the Navy to working on a replica of Captain Cook's Endeavour.

He even met his wife Betty at a yacht club.

The English-born larrikin, now aged 82, has had his share of unique life experiences.

It was while he worked with the Endeavour replica that he got to shake the Queen's hand.

 

 

Life memory... Frank in a photo from 1997 with Prince Charles who he met while working on the Endeavour replica.
Life memory... Frank in a photo from 1997 with Prince Charles who he met while working on the Endeavour replica. Alistair Brightman

When Prince Andrew was the ship's special guest, Mr Revill was assigned to look after the Prince and answer his questions.

The pair ended up chatting for 45 minutes, with the Prince firing question after question to stall his company much to their annoyance.

Coming from a "poor family", Mr Revill acted on advice given to him by his school's headmaster and became an apprentice in the Navy.

Of the 2000 people who started their training the same time as him, only 90 made it out with Mr Revill being one the "survivors".

He was trained as a blacksmith, fitter and turner and went on to serve in the Navy for 15 years during which just six months was spent ashore.

The land stint came about due to a birth of his first child, with Mr Revill going on to father three children in total.

Though his life vastly changed through the years, something which always stayed with him was his passion for music.

The brass player first learned the cornet when he was just four-years-old, and kept up practice for the next 72 years.

While at sea he would sneak to a noisy part of the ship for daily practice sessions to not disturb others aboard.

Now living at Fraser Shores Retirement Village, he recalls regularly playing instruments at his home and entertaining other residents until his health gave way.

When asked about his life's passions, he says his wife Betty was one.

Their love blossomed over mathematics.

At that time, the metric system was being adapted and nurse Betty asked Mr Revill for help to understand it.

He was working as a purchaser for a cement company, so he knew a few things about measurement.

They married in 1982.

Together they worked on an Endeavour replica, assigned to guide the ship into different wharfs.

Their farewell letter from colleagues stated they would be remembered for "good humour, cheerfulness, comforting hugs and consumption of grog."

They are enjoying their retirement years together in Hervey Bay.


‘Police ran like a couple of gazelles’ to apprehend man

Premium Content ‘Police ran like a couple of gazelles’ to apprehend man

Two general duties officers showed their fast footwork when they arrested a wanted...

Man arrested after dangerous stolen-car chase across towns

Premium Content Man arrested after dangerous stolen-car chase across towns

The chase went through Ballina, Alstonville, Lismore and Goonellabah.

Blue-green algae blooms to red alert at Tweed

Premium Content Blue-green algae blooms to red alert at Tweed

Council has issued a red alert for blue-green algae following its latest water test...