Obituaries

Geoff Wheat

Geoff was a member of the band at St Anne’s Cathedral in Leeds. He learnt to ring in the late 1950s on the heavy eight at St Peter’s, Swinton in Lancashire (now Greater Manchester). He rang his first quarter, covering to various doubles methods, in March 1959. For a time in the 1970’s he was the tower captain at St Peter’s and was also responsible for winding the church clock. In the 1980’s he moved his business activities to Yorkshire and acquired a flat near Leeds Parish Church (now Leeds Minster). He joined the band there and rang with them when his business commitments allowed. He became a member of the Yorkshire Association in 1999. In 1998 his ringing activities moved to St Anne’s Cathedral Leeds and about that time he also joined the Guild of St Agatha, the Guild of Catholic Ringers. He was an enthusiastic supporter of Guild events which involved trips to various parts of the country and overseas to Dublin and the Isle of Man. Geoff was an excellent coverer. The high placings of the Cathedral band in branch striking competitions owed much to his competent handling of the tenor bell. Indeed, on one occasion, this aspect was specifically mentioned by the competition judge. Away from bellringing, Geoff had many other interests including jazz, a touring theatre group and most forms of transport. The latter also provided his occupation which was that of a bargee ferrying aggregate and other bulk loads on the Humber and the tidal reaches of the Trent. Geoff was diagnosed with cancer in the Spring of 2012 and underwent a major operation in May 2012. He died from complications arising from this on 7th January 2013, a week after his 70th birthday. Geoff was an integral part of the closely knit Cathedral band and his presence will be greatly missed.

TONY STAMP

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Central Council of Church Bell Ringers