Sidney George Hutchings
9th January 1908 – 12th July 1986
The following obituary was published in The Ringing World of 8th August 1986 (Page 686)
George, as he was known to ringers, was at the time of his death the longest serving member of the Bedfordshire Association, having joined in 1923.
He was one of a number who learned to ring on the six at Kempston with the band which was formed shortly after World War I, under the leadership of Pearl Inskip.
In those days, Kempston had one of the leading six bell bands in the county and it was standard practice for a team to be nominated for the Sunday evening ringing to ring a 720 of any one of a variety of methods, some of which do not appear very often in peal columns today, such as Woodbine, Royal Bob, Boat Race, etc.
In these circumstances, George very soon became a good six-bell ringer and this, combined with his patient consideration for beginners made him a natural for teaching recruits. It is in this role that he will be remembered by many of the older members of the Bedfordshire Association.
He played a major part in building up the Kempston band again after World War II and rang in the first peal of Major on the bells with the local band in 1948. In 1959 he took over as tower captain from Pearl Inskip and served until 1975.
George spent many hours in the tower during the re-hanging and the eight and the augmentation to 10 and took part in the ringing during the service when the 10 were dedicated in 1981.
He passed away on 12th July, at the age of 78. During the internment in the nearby cemetery, half-muffled Grandsire Caters was rung, at a steady pace of which he would have approved.
Later that day, a half-muffled quarter peal of Plain Bob Royal was rung to mark the passing of the last link with the Kempston band from between the wars.
Kempston,Beds 17th July 1986
A Quarter Peal of 1260 Plain Bob Royal
1 Anne Izzard
2 Lynn Brett (1st inside)
3 Margaret Feneley
4 Gillian Izzard
5 D A Hammond
6 S J Darwood
7 R Chapman
8 C W Izzard
9 N H Brett
10 A M Keech (C)
Half-muffled in memory of George Hutchings, former Tower Captain