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News > Obituaries > Obituary - Guy Catchpole

Obituary - Guy Catchpole

It is with regret that the Club announces the death of Guy Catchpole OI (1936-1944)
16 Jan 2020

CATCHPOLE, Guy, died 16th December 2019.

If you would like to send in an obituary for the next issue of the OI Journal please send to:

Many thanks

Stuart Catchpole OI (1963-1976) writes:

Guy was born in Felixstowe in 1926, the third son of Stanley and Nancy Catchpole. He was followed by a sister who sadly died aged just 2 – he tended her grave for almost 90 years. He missed a couple of years of primary education due to ill health – spending most of it on the local farm, which left him with a life-long interest in agriculture. The family moved to Ipswich where Guy followed brothers David and John to Ipswich School in 1936. It was always alleged that in his first music lesson the teacher asked whether he was related to David and John. “Yes Sir” was followed by “then get out of the room now!” Different times.

Guy remained at the School, playing 1st XV rugby, 2nd XI cricket, being head of Broke House - and to everyone’s surprise passing his School Certificate – until 1944 when he enlisted in the Rifle Brigade, based outside York.  As a third son he was spared active service but was deployed to the chaos that was Germany after the war. 

After he returned from the Army he started working as a “Gentleman Apprentice” breaking up pig iron for the major engineering manufacturer Ransomes Simms & Jefferies on Ipswich docks. The Gentlemen Apprentices wore white lab coats and were somewhat unkindly referred to as “The Ice Cream Men” by the rest of the workforce.  

After moving into sales he was appointed the Ransomes agricultural machinery representative in Scotland for 6 or 7 years where he made many, many life-long friends and more importantly it was in Edinburgh that he met Myra and where they married in 1955. Those of you who remember him will understand why he was known as “the talkative Englishman.”

They soon moved to Haywards Heath in Sussex, where Guy covered the whole of southern England and the south Midlands selling and servicing agricultural machinery, while Myra manned the phones to farmers panicking about machine breakdowns in the middle of harvesting. In 1961 he was promoted to sales management in the grass machinery division, returning to Ipswich and renewing his relationship with the School. He was on the Old Ipswichians Committee and ran the New Year OI Ball for several years alongside George Notcutt and was President in the 1970s.

Guy remained Ipswich based but regularly travelled the world driving exports – Europe, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Canada, the US – and they say the globalisation is recent! 

It wasn’t all work and no play - he joined Woodbridge Golf Club in 1964, served on the committee for several years before becoming Captain in 1977 and then President for 9 years, and an Honorary Life Member. Less than a year ago he still made sure he was at the golf club every Monday morning to catch up with old friends. 

He was a keen fisherman with his cousin and life-long best friend Peter Cooper. 

He is survived by wife Myra, children Fiona and Stuart and grandchildren Zoe, Max, Nicola and Matthew 


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