Frederick Henry (Eric) Walker

- 21/5/2019

We report the sad news of the loss of Frederick Henry Walker (known as Eric), a member of the Wellingborough Branch who rang at Wollaston. Following a request for all towers to ring in the millennium, a new band was formed at St Mary's Wollaston, and at the age of 79, Eric learnt to ring church bells. His tutor was the tireless Rex Line with assistance from Anne Hickling, Ivor Dickin and John Holmes. A team was formed and trained and did indeed ring in the millennium at St Mary's Wollaston.

Eric assisted with a big fund-raising effort to put in rope guides, change the bearings, refurbish the clappers and purchase new ropes. Under the guidance of Tower Captain John Beresford, Eric became quite proficient at the simpler methods and really enjoyed Grandsire. He liked ringing the bells and was delighted when a quarter peal conducted by Alan Marks was rung for his 80th birthday in 2000.

Due to health complications, Eric stopped ringing in 2011 but he was always happy to see the bells being rung for Sunday service and retained his membership of the Guild until the end of his life. Eric died peacefully in his sleep on 21st May 2019. The wollaston ringers and friends rang his coffin into the church for his funeral on 14th June 2019 and also rang him on his way to the Nene Valley Crematorium. A quarter peal of Plain Bob Doubles was rung in memory of Eric on the day of the interment of his ashes in St Mary's Churchyard Wollaston on Saturday 27th July 2019.

Author: Thomas Coulter-Brophy