Brooke loses a very special bell ringer

The Rutland village of Brooke has been saddened and shocked by the sudden death of David Clemence. David was a very popular member of the village community and of the local bell ringing group. His cheerful relaxed personality and his unassuming gentle manner added to his reliability and made him really easy to get on with.

He was born in 1943 in Arnold, Nottingham where he grew up. Upon leaving school he was Apprenticed to the MOD for seven years. He then took up a post as hospital engineer at Nottingham City Hospital.

When he was 15, he met Barbara and as childhood sweethearts they continued a lifetime relationship. They married in Nottingham and delighted in their three children: Matthew, Daniel and Elisabeth.

In 1983, they began a family enterprise by buying the garage in Braunston. David serviced the cars while Barbara ran the village shop and Post Office.

Finally, David worked at the Property Service Agency of the MOD working at Cottesmore, Wittering and Cranwell until he retired. Barbara, in the meantime, had developed her real talent of Botanical Painting and as an artist and teacher she quickly became very well known and appreciated. David took a great pride in her work and supported her by travelling with her to study the great architecture of other countries and cultures.

They took delight in renovating old properties using their combined skills to great effect. After doing four they eventually came to Brooke and made their house into a wonderful home. Here David played with the grandchildren letting them accompany him on the ride on mower. Here he worked on his beloved old car – a Singer Le Mans and here he worked on his motor bikes and listened to his rock music.

Here it was said of him that he would rather take the mower to pieces than cut the grass!!!!! Here he took up bell ringing, following in the footsteps of his father, grandfather and great grandfather, and became a valued member of the team enjoying working with Ray Bailey on the mechanical aspects of the bells.

It was said he was the best father a child could have – a fitting epitaph for a delightful man

Ian McKelvey

BB BellBoard
Central Council of Church Bell Ringers