The day had a rather sombre start as I opened my emails while the kettle was boiling and thought oh that's great I've got an email from Bill but then I saw the title and the words funeral and regret etc. There are relatively few people I've kept up correspondence with from work and Bill Easby was one of them, with a shared interest in transport Bill had a great fondness for steam railways and his dad famously drove for the LNER. Bill had a few favourite anecdotes which passed many a dull winter afternoon huddled in the offices by the radiators over a coffee, many of the stories centred on the railways in North Yorkshire. The stories seemed to creep up on you and morphed into one another sometimes, I suppose many of us were considered characters and in management it was a delicate balancing act between keeping in with the 'lads', getting the job done and appeasing bosses and clients. I think many of us have a lot of foibles which we would shy away from but evoke gentle ribbing, Bill certainly wasn't one for giving way to going grey on top and dipped in to many a dye pot none so striking as the morning he emerged in Fleetwood with bright red hair - a case of the emperor's new clothes - nobody was prepared to make comment. We did all have a laugh and we'd often retreat at lunch or after work to the pub and Bill would soon have the atmosphere relaxed as he restructured the company over some Guinness. Bill wasn't exactly into classical music and once stumped with a virtually teetotal client in Grangemouth who enjoyed choral singing was relieved when I volunteered to take the chap to the opera in Glasgow but got it straight in the ear from our director for letting me do it. I've quite a few photos ferreted away from on site events but could only locate a few from Fleetwood I think which feature Bill as site manager on overhaul projects, in particular presenting the loathed order of the toilet seat.. don't ask! As I said to Justin one of two brothers, sons of Bill who I worked with I couldn't really find that many words to say as I was a bit stunned all day but at least the funeral will draw together a fair old crowd of friends whom I haven't seen for many years now.
We've been out to Cheshire Oaks today and then an excellent meal at the Dog in Over Peover this evening. I think Yvonne and Graham have had a good time here and hopefully we'll be down in Hampshire around Christmas to catch up with family.
PMP Sponsors of POPS bus rally.