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Nicholas Oliver: a tribute

  • Posted on Sep 14, 2018

Nicholas Vincent Oliver was born in 1973 and grew up with older brother Justin and their mum and dad, Vince & Kathy, in West Norwood.

Nick was born with brittle bones which meant that he had to face a mountain of disabilities.  If things weren’t bad enough, during his teenage years he lost his hearing but learnt to lip-read very quickly. The hearing loss was and extreme blow to him because of his love of music and he realised that being deaf was more of a disability than being in a wheelchair.  However, he wasn’t one to let disabilities get in his way and was determined to live life to the full and that is exactly what he did.

Nick was always curious and he loved reading and learning. He took a course in law but what he really wanted to do was to be a better writer. He also took courses in journalism and copywriting and then moved on to his passion  for writing comedy. After a short period of work experience with the BBC, Nick worked for KISS FM for 5 years writing joked for their jingles.  More recently he wrote jokes for the Radio 4 show “Newsjack”.

In his late teens he took up wheelchair snooker with his determined enthusiasm and played in many competitions, including some in Belgium.  Snooker gave way to pool and he developed his skills and competed in various tournaments in the UK.

He also enjoyed the cinema and loved going to watch films when they were made available with subtitles. He developed his love of the theatre when closed captioning was introduced. Another of his favourite pastimes was going to different restaurants sampling various cuisines, his favourite being a good old “Ruby Murray”.  He loved sport and was a keen football fan and an avid supporter of Barcelona and Chelsea.

Who was Nick?

He was sociable, happy and confident although his naturally sunny disposition was sometimes sorely tried by his disabilities. Whenever anyone met him he was always cheerful and full of good humour. Despite his condition he learnt to drive and this gave him a certain amount of freedom and independence allowing him to meet up with his friends whose company he enjoyed and valued highly.

Nick wanted a simple life, never wanting to be the centre of attention. To his mum and dad he was IT consultant, menu planner, entertainments officer and personal satnav.  Kathy and Vince love him deeply and are so proud of all he achieved despite his over whelming difficulties and they will of course always miss him, his lovely smile and his chuckle.

So we want to give thanks today for all that Nick has given us.

by Vince and Kathy Oliver