John Leo Routledge

John, who was also known as Leo to many people, passed away on the 5th of July 2017 at Primrose Lodge Residential Home East Goscote. He moved to St Peters Court in Syston in 2004 to be near family and quickly established himself as a ‘local character’ with his daily visits to local cafes, pubs and supermarkets. His regular routine became that after enjoying a breakfast at Upstairs Downstairs cafe, he would call in at the Grosvenor for his daily whisky. Many people knew him or knew of him and all cared about him, however few know of the fascinating life of this intelligent and charming man.
Born on Merseyside in 1936, John moved to Leicester with his family in 1949. He attended Alderman Newton’s Grammar School and whilst studying for university entry appeared as Shylock in a production of ‘The Merchant of Venice’ to rave reviews. John served his National Service in the RAF, based in Sri Lanka, and whilst there appeared in the film ‘The Bridge over the River Kwai’.
John gained an MA degree in Law and English at Cambridge and also an MA in linguistics at Lancaster. He spoke fluently in several languages, including French, German, Portuguese and Spanish. Sadly, John was diagnosed with bi-polar in his 20’s, which had a profound effect on his life, but this never stopped him from pursuing his career as a teacher of English to foreign students.
John lived and worked as a teacher in London, Rio de Janeiro, Portugal, Paris and Oxford. He met his first wife Ecila whilst teaching in Brazil and together they had a son, Eric, who still lives there with his wife and two daughters. John was very proud of his son and would often talk about him.
John was a true gentleman – articulate, warm hearted and kind, always with a twinkle in his eye. He will be sadly missed but long remembered by all who came to know him.