A man who spent more than 40 years working as a dentist in Watford, Bernard Woolf Bloom, has died at the age of 82.

Bernard moved from London to Shendish during the war and attended Hemel Hempstead Grammar School. From there, he went to Newcastle University Dental School, graduating in 1957.

It was while he was at Newcastle, working as a part-time porter at the Royal Victoria Infirmary, that he met a nurse, Lucienne, who would become his wife and life-long companion.

Once qualified, he moved to Hempstead Road, Watford, where he set up his first dental practice. Patients who went to the practice would often recount stories about Bruno, the Bloom’s very large St Bernard dog, and their encounters with him.

In 1959 Bernard purchased New Hertford House, in St Albans Road, Watford, and moved his surgery to the much larger first floor premises. It was a thriving practice.

Bernard was ahead of his time, working two surgeries and doing advanced crown and bridge work. In 1980 he introduced a full time hygienist, being the first practice in Watford to do so.

He was a devoted family man and loved spending time with his four sons, Stuart, Philip, Nicholas and David and, latterly, his grandchildren. 

He also had a passion for flying and for many years owned a Piper Cherokee which he kept at Elstree.

It was not unknown for him to fly his plane down to the South of France, where the family were staying, laden with Heinz baked beans - staple food for growing boys. 

Bernard was thrilled when his son David went into dentistry and in 1991 the practice again relocated to Leavesden Road, Watford, with Bernard working until his retirement in May 2001.

He was happy to retire knowing his patients were in the safe hands of another Bloom.

Unfortunately the retirement he had planned, travelling and enjoying life, was marred by ill health and Bernard passed away peacefully on Sunday, March 23 after a long illness.

His funeral was held three days later at Edgwarebury Cemetery.

Talking at the service one  of his friends said: "Bernard was one of life’s gentlemen and will be sadly missed by all who knew him, none more so than his family."

He is survived by his wife, Lucienne, four sons and eight grandchildren.