The infectious enjoyment that Peter derived from 'gigging' can be traced back to his first ever musical purchase - Vanilla Ice's 90's classic - 'To The Extreme' (on vinyl).
Even at a young age, the comedy was not lost on him, as passing dog walkers on the suburban streets of Bromley could often hear "Go white boy, Go white boy, Go" blaring from the front room of 75 Scotts Lane whilst Dad watered the magnolias on the front lawn - textbook. This early exposure to 'phat beatz' no doubt influenced Peter's decision to take up the drums at Eastbourne College. Often our drum lessons would overlap, resulting in a lengthy trade of the latest 'Alan Partridge' quotes (the grenade sequence upon entry was a favourite, replete with returning fire from our phantom AK47's) - a much more appealing alternative to double chemistry.
Whilst 'having a ruddy laugh' was always a high priority for Peter, he was also a very talented drummer and musician. 'Metronomic Pete' provided the backbone to The Westropp Band; his solid time keeping papering over any minor cracks in a usually flawless performance. He also drummed for Rob Cowen in the formative years of the band, this time performing on a stage frequented by such greats as John Bonham and Keith Moon at 'The Borderline' in London. Among the first festivals that Peter attended was Glastonbury 2000. I remember him and cousin Edward returning with the slogans 'Modern Animal' and 'Carbonated Youth' written across their respective t-shirts, both terms that were repeated ad infinitum over the next few months.
The festival account, and more importantly another avenue of banter had been opened. Over the following years Peter attended an abundance of gigs/festivals all over England and Europe. He can be seen on youtube at the Isle of Wight festival 2008 with his hands pumping the air, lending his legendary support to the Operators. Peter achieved this elevation by sitting atop gammy-legged co-gigger Joe Johnson - the resulting months off any form of exercise a small price to pay for bant.
Music, especially when shared meant a great deal to Peter. Whilst there were several highlights, including 'Power Ballad' nights at Leeds, Justice at Somerset House, and 'Oxegen' festival with Ellie in Ireland, I'll never forget Kings of Leon's Brixton Academy gig on his birthday, August 14th 2008. The band's single was racing towards the number 1 spot, and as such the demand for tickets was sky high. A total of 4 eager Operators, 6 of the Clapham contingent and 9 tickets made it over to the venue. Promptly clubbing together to pay for an extra from a tout, Peter spearheaded the fund raising. After a massive sing/mosh along to the soon-to-be chart-topper, there was a moment of shared euphoria as the band dropped down a gear for the ballad 'Arizona'. It's long been an Operators' favourite, and I know held a special place for many of the Clapham lads too. I'm so grateful to have shared that moment, and several others with his chums and mine.
Long may his spirit of bant and love of music grace many a festival/gig in the future. It goes without saying that I miss Peter as a brother, but with such ease he fashioned a unique and powerful bond with so many. He had family beyond family, knew what made people tick, and knew how to get the best out of them. On a musical note (not literally, Lynn), a lyric from his favourite song that I suspect rings true for so many of us when thinking of Peter: "I saw the crescent, you saw the whole of the moon."