NOVEMBER 2018 + Peter Fillan Obituary

Since its formation in 2001, our Group has held its Quarterly Open Meetings with a Guest Speaker every year, with subjects covering a wide and varied range with most (if not all) relating to a local (i.e Devon) and/or historical interest.    Our next Open Meeting, on FRIDAY 07th DECEMBER is no exception, and the subject connection could not be more local.

Captain & Mrs Jones

Our Speaker will be Chris Robillard, a local journalist/author, whose new book is called “Captain & Mrs. Jones” – a true story of love, romance and espionage in war-torn France during the 2nd World War (according to its cover)   “Well, yes, interesting  …. I hear you thinking, but what’s the local connection?”   I could leave the author to tell you on the night, but in the hope of tempting you to come and hear the full story, I will tell you that the story has come to light because the son of Captain & Mrs. Jones now lives here in Marldon, and has only very recently been able to tell the full story to our Speaker (for reasons which will be explained by the author).

Our December Open Meeting is also our Christmas Evening, and this year, for various reasons, we have decided to change the format and have a Speaker instead of entertainment, pleasurable though that has been for some years.   There will of course be mulled wine, tea/coffee, and Mince pies, plus a raffle.   In another change, the Meeting will be open to all, i.e Members and their spouses/guests as usual, and non-members.  Admission will be only £2, payable on the door on the night.   Alternatively, if you wish, you can buy tickets in advance.   If you would prefer to buy tickets, please contact either our Secretary Derek (529859) or our Chairman Tony (521419).    Members will receive our usual flyer in good time, but please look out for our Posters on the Village Notice Boards.   Although there will also be a reminder in next month’s Magazine, please make a note of the date now.

xmastree
FRIDAY 07th DECEMBER

I am pleased to say that our programme of Guest Speakers for 2019 has already been arranged by our Secretary (Derek), including “Smuggling in Devon – the truth behind the fiction” by Robert Hesketh and “Nature in the Garden” by Paul Rendell.

If you have any queries about any of the above, please do not hesitate to ring either our Secretary Derek (529859) or our Chairman Tony (521419).

Tony Chidlow .. Chairman

>>>>>> <<<<<

PETER FILLAN
(Former Headmaster of Marldon C of E Primary School)

Peter Fillan  was Headmaster of Marldon Church of England Primary School for 21 years, before retiring in 1988.   Sadly, he passed away on 28th October, only a few weeks before his 90th birthday.    He will be remembered with much affection, and sadness, by very many present and former residents of Marldon who were not only pupils at the School, but were also Peter’s contemporaries, who will recall those happy years when their own children were his pupils.

Peter and his wife Jean retired to Dartington, and thankfully Peter was rewarded for his lifelong devotion to his profession by enjoying a long and well deserved retirement.

Peter was one of the last generation of Head Teachers who actually taught, and had no objection to being described as “an old fashioned teacher” who loved teaching children.  He had a firm hand when necessary, and was liked and respected by all parents whose children were in his care.   The children in turn enjoyed their schooldays and especially what might be called the “non academic” pursuits and experiences which Peter introduced and thought were essential, such as days (and weeks) on visits to places such as local farms, beaches, camps, and other places further afield where the children could gain knowledge and  experience of life and how others lived beyond the classroom and their life in a small village.   He was always conscious of the safety and welfare of the children in his care, whether on a visit to a local farm or a week long “holiday” under canvas at centres just that little bit further from home, such as Wembury or Slapton.

Peter was also very keen that, living so close to the sea, as many as possible of his children learned to swim, and encouraged the building and use of an outside swimming pool at the School, encouraged and assisted by eager parents.

Notwithstanding these “non academic” pursuits, and despite the size of what was, after all, a small village school, very many of his children have progressed both academically, and subsequently in worthwhile careers.   At the risk of repeating myself, Peter will be remembered and missed  with much affection and sadness  by all who knew him.

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