Jack Brown, passed away peacefully on Wednesday 14th April 2021 at home, aged 80.
Funeral Service of the Late Jack Brown
Jack passed away peacefully at home on Wednesday 14th April 2021, aged 80. The loving partner of Margaret and step father to Mark. Jack was Jack! He was always his own man, very intelligent and generous, with a keen sense of humour.
A warm caring “Gentle man” He was respected by everyone and will be fondly missed. The service was held privately at Birches Crematorium, Northwich, on Friday 14th May.
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Jack was born on 30th April 1940 in the seaside town of Ryde on the Isle of Wight , a town renowned for its many beautiful Regency and Victorian buildings, his Grandparents owned and ran a chemist from their home at 109 High Street, Ryde. His mother was Katherine Anne and his father Alfred Buchanan Brown who, pre war, had been employed by Messrs. Duke Bros, Builders Merchants.
In WW2 Alfred Buchanan joined the National Fire Service soon becoming a Leading Fireman but was sadly killed, along with 11 other Firefighters when the National Fire Service HQ, based in the requisitioned Gloster Hotel took a direct hit from an enemy aerial bombardment on Jan 3rd 1943, he was just 36 years old.
There was a memorial stone with Jack’s father’s name on it set into the wall of the Old Fire Station in Station Street which was carefully removed and replaced into the wall of the engine house at the new station in Nicholson Street in the 1990’s.
Like many others widowed in the war it must have been very difficult for Jack’s Mother to bring up her young son and Jack worked hard to help.
When old enough he continually worked to fund his own way through his University Education, on the railways and in Pontins Holiday Camp with his most vivid memory being that of stirring a large cauldron of soup made of all the left-over food, He used to say it was kept on the boil for a week and all the punters thought it was marvellous although he wouldn’t have touched it with a barge pole!
Jack studied at Leeds Durham and Manchester Universities obtaining qualifications and diplomas in various subjects including Mathematics, Pure Mathematics and Applied mathematics with Distinction. Obviously his strongest subject, Followed by English Language and English literature.
Even after finishing university he continued to study and took various Open University courses obtaining a BA in 1980.
His thirst for knowledge stayed with him all his life and from a young age he enjoyed reading non-fiction covering many subjects particularly “The American Civil war” and “Native American Indians”.
The meeting with Margaret took place in 1982 when Jack also became a father figure to Mark and it was during this time that Jack was teaching maths and English at Buglawton Hall School.
This was a school which catered for young boys from Manchester on a weekly residential basis, all of whom had social, emotional and learning issues and the work with them was often stressful and demanding, Jack used his skiing holidays with Margaret and his friends as a much needed stress relief opportunity.
Jack and Margaret travelled when they could during their 39 years together, sometimes just the 2 of them and sometimes with friends, abroad, many times to Australia and the Islands off the mainland, and to beautiful areas of Britain like Scotland and the Lake District. Jack would have an amazing knowledge of all the places they visited due to the diligent research beforehand.
This amazing ability to retain knowledge not only made Jack a highly valued member of quiz teams but also earned him the accolade of ‘Best Trivia Player Ever’ bestowed upon him by Mark, when they consistently won the pub and leisure centre quizzes.
When Jack was 54 he unfortunately developed tinnitus which led to some hearing loss and he decided to take retirement, although hardly putting his feet up as he then went onto take a part time job with Cheshire County Council working on the ambulances taking the elderly and disabled to day care centres. Jack loved the people he drove because they really appreciated the help he gave and they would give hi small tokens of thanks like sweets.
He also voluntarily helped Age concern and used his very creative abilities to get them involved in various games, most of which he made himself such as a form of horse racing, skittles and bagatelle, amongst others creating much enjoyment but also encouraging the use of hands and minds.
This hearing impairment didn’t stop Jack from talking to everyone he met with his dry sense of humour and seeing a joke in everything, sometimes when others didn’t! On such occasions he would remonstrate himself saying “I must stop making these stupid comments” – though from what Margaret says, he never did!
He was a gentleman with definite views, and having experienced financial hardship growing up was acutely aware of poverty, he was extremely intelligent and artistic; painting in oils, a portrait of Margaret with their first dog Scamp, amongst many other subjects copies of the impressionist works and brilliant caricatures of friends (not all of whom appreciated them!)
Having found Margaret he supported her in all her passions, aiding her recovery following surgery by visiting the hospital with champagne and two glasses, encouraging her constantly in her practice and teaching of Tai Chi and becoming a wonderful father to Mark.
Jack so loved his canine companions, as did Margaret of course with Scamp their first Westie who would accompany Jack to Buglawton Hall School, as a puppy, notably on one occasion when Jack was acting head the school inspectors where present Scamp decided to welcome the visitors by ‘pooping’ on the office floor, whether this affected the schools report or not is not known!
After Scamp Margaret and Jack gave another Westie a home when Snowy joined the family but it was 18 months after Snowy died that Margaret persuaded Jack to get Barney, a cock-a-poo who fast became the love of Jack’s life.
Although Margaret under took the training of Barney it was clear that Jack and Barney had a special bond. In Margaret’s words this dog was wonderfully trainable, willing to learn and loved to please his humans and when Barney very sadly died last November, age just 9. It broke Jack’s heart.
Jack passed peacefully at home having lived a full and interesting life, always his own man, warm and caring, well respected and truly loved and despite his many talents, a very humble man.
Margaret asked Donations were made to the RNID, deafness being his biggest drawback to socialising and meaning he could no longer listen to his passion for opera and classical music.