Patrick Peace

Many past and present members of the Club attended the funeral of Patrick Peace on 13th October 2011; Pat, who was twice President of the Club, and was an Honorary Life Member, died at the end of September, aged 97.

A photo of those present and the script of Andy’s speech is below:

Pat Peace’s funeral; 13th October 2011. Members and former members of the Castle Mountaineering Club. Sean Jennings, Charles Knowles, Norma Jackson, Ron Purkiss, Keith Skews, Gordon Riley, Alan Fowler, Steve France, ? , Ronny Hindmoor, Mike Anderson, Jill Anderson, Serena France, Margaret Anderson, Mike Doyle (at front in suit), Anne Payne, Bob Payne, Caroline Whitehead, Marian Birkett, Paul Goodlad, Vanda Boyd, John Barnard, Linda McLeish, Mary Peace, Frank Mellor, Hugh Dowling (dark glasses), Jennifer Mellor, Ashley Turner, Kate Fowler, Mike Jackson, Chris Kell, Andy Smith, Suzanne Came, Andy Came, David Pendlebury, Alison Williams, Rosy Smith, Martin Whitaker, Pat Cocks, Barry Goodlad. (Photo: Alan Fowler)

Patrick was the first member of the Castle Mountaineering Club I met when I first went along to the clubroom behind the Rising Sun Inn on Abbey Lane. This was back in 1973. Pat was standing with Mary just by the door. He introduced himself, and, as with so many other first time visitors to the Club, he and Mary took me under their wing, gave me a meets list, introduced me to other members, and enthused about climbing and mountaineering. I was soon attending my first Club meet.

By that time Patrick was already a long-standing member of the young club. He and Mary had joined it in 1969, just two years after it was founded, so they were in pretty well from the start. Patrick served the Club in many different roles. He was Vice-president, President (twice, in 1976 and 1980). At various times he was Equipment Custodian and Clubroom Custodian and he was a member of the committee for many years. In recognition of all this, he was awarded Honorary Life Membership of the Club. He used his practical skills to help the Club; for example he made a lot of flags and stickers in the shape of an orange Castle (the Club logo) which members could put on their tents and cars (or motorbike in my case) so they could find each other more easily on Club meets. He also supported SACC, the Sheffield Association of Climbing Clubs, as he served as chief timekeeper and starter at the annual fell race organised under the auspices of SACC. Of course he was supported in all this by Mary, who also did her stints as president, committee member and meet organiser. Together they were invariably referred to in the same breath as: “Pat’n’Mary”.

Patrick, accompanied by Mary of course, was a very active Club member in the 1970’s and early 80’s and a consistent attender at Club meets, both local and away. Looking through my old logbooks, it is noticeable how often Pat’s name appears in my notes of Club meets. Although Pat did some hillwalking and scrambling, and I particularly remember an ascent of Cader Idris with him and on another occasion a traverse of Striding Edge, his real love and forte was rock climbing. This was particularly the case for local crags like Stanage and Froggatt Edges. Pat seemed to have an encyclopaedic knowledge of the climbs and could tell you exactly where each hold was and what to do with it. He was always calm and laidback. I never saw him get gripped on a climb. He was also seen at social events which occurred frequently in those days. Apart from Club events like the Annual Dinner, and sessions in the pub after a good climbing meet, there seemed to many parties in those days, where Pat could always be relied on for a good conversation about climbing.

I am sure other Club members will have many memories of Patrick, and some good reminiscences to recount later. Let me just just finish by saying that Pat was a great guy. It was a pleasure to have known him as a friend. He was a gentleman and a climber, and you can’t say better than that.

AJS 13 Oct 2011

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