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Paul Perry

Updated: Dec 21, 2021

Sensei Perry was born in Hertfordshire in 1950 and grew up on a farm. He was not the keenest at school preferring physical and sporting activities. He discovered karate at the age of 17. When he was 18 he moved, temporarily, to Australia, as the idea of surfing appealed to him. Being in Australia gave him the opportunity to train under Yamaguchi Sensei and to travel frequently to Japan to study under the tutelage of Kanazawa Sensei who awarded him Shodan. Whilst Shotokan karate remained Sensei Perry’s main love he became a master of Tai-Chi , yoga and became fully conversant with many other martial arts.

On returning to England, as a Shodan, he trained with Sensei John Van-Weenen. He deputised for him on many occasions taking the class which was always popular with the students.

The relationship between Senseis Van-Weenen and Perry became uneasy and less friendly which resulted in a split. Sensei Perry then formed Jin Se Kai which was based mainly in Hertfordshire and the surrounding area. He always followed Kanazawa Sensei and competed for SKIF for many years both in kata and kumite.

Renshi recalls “Sensei Perry was a diligent practitioner of Shotokan. He was relentless in pursuit of bettering himself. He was a great instructor but very intolerant and unforgiving if a student stepped out of line. Once after demonstrating an awesome technique Renshi, then only green belt, let out an involuntary whistle. Sensei Perry went ballistic and vented his views upon Renshi in no uncertain terms leaving him to practice push-ups for the remainder of the class. Even though he could appear tyranical I always thoroughly enjoyed his classes which were physically hard and demanding but equally informative.”

”He was so supple, the only karate-ka I ever witnessed performing vertical splits stood up against a wall! At that time 3rd Dan Judo-ka Richard Saint, (Karate Shodan) who again was a great martial artist and a very hard man, was asked to perform a strong mae-geri to the abdomen of Sensei Perry. Sensei with kimae just took the kick as if it were nothing. ”Faster and harder” he said and with a flick of his leg, performed a block a bit like a kekomi, Richard Saint fell to the floor with an already swollen shin. He had something akin to a hard-boiled egg on it within seconds.”

He was a hard man but a true gentleman with a terrific sense of humour outside of the dojo. Sadly there aren’t too many of his type around.

Many CFTS students trained with him and all benefited from his karate-do and instruction.

Master Perry was awarded 9th Dan about a year before he passed away.

He passed away due to cancer on 22nd of February 2014 and will be missed by many karate-ka across the globe.

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