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Author Topic: Mr. George Gatey  (Read 565 times)
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Craggs
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« on: March 29, 2017, 16:13:08 PM »

Mr George Gatey.
Solicitor (ret)
Died on the 22nd July 1940  aged 65 years
Spent most of his professional life in Windermere in the Lake District and retired to Little Common Bexhill, East Sussex.
Buried in the Churchyard of St. Mark's Church, Little Common, Bexhill, East Sussex

Attached is a photograph of the grave headstone of Mr. George Gatey, a retired solicitor, who was a very well known and respected gentleman.  I first thought that his resting place indicated a military / CWGC grave - or a 'Civilian War Death' but a bit of basic research shows this not to be the case.

Bexhill-on-Sea Observer - Saturday 27 July 1940

RETIRED SOLICITOR'S DEATH.

The death occurred on Monday, as the result of an accident, of Mr. George Gatey, of "The Corner", Barnhorn-road.  For many years Mr Gatey, who was in his 66th year, was in practice as a solicitor, being head of the firm of George Gatey and Son, of Windermere and Ambleside, where he was a prominent figure and held a number of public offices.  He came to Bexhill about four years ago on his retirement.  He was a member of The Cooden Beach Golf Club.
Mr. Gatey leaves a widow, three sons and five daughters.  Two of the sons are in the Services, Pilot Officer Norman Gatey R.A.F.,V.R. and Commander (E) Colin Gatey R.N., and daughter, Miss A.E. Gatey is in the F.A.N.Y., A.T.S..
The funeral took place on Thursday.  Following cremation at Brighton, the ashes were interred in St, Mark's church-yard, the service being conducted by the Rector (the Rev G.N. Standish).
Mr. J.F. Towner and Messrs Longley and Co., St. Leaonard's-road was the funeral director.


Bexhill-on-Sea Observer - Saturday 17 August 1940

The Late Mr. George Gatey.

The "Westmoreland Gazette" pays high tribute to the late Mr. George Gatey of The Corner, Little Common, who lived at Windermere all his life until he retired and came to live at Little Common in 1936.  Mr. Gatey was well known and loved in The Lake District and held many public offices.  He was a keen sportsman, having been Captain of the Windermere Golf Club and the Secretary of the Windermere and District Angling Society.  He was also interested in cricket and bowling.
The following is an extract from the tribute paid to his memory by the Rector of Windermere in the Parish Church at the end of his sermon on Sunday, July 28th :-
"One of his friends testified to me that he had never heard him say an unkind word to anyone or about anyone, and that he was a fine English Christian gentleman.  Personally I feel that I have lost a friend of over 30 years standing - one in whom there was no guile.  We sympathise with his widow and their family in the suddenness of his untimely death.  Truly it may be said of him 'The souls of the righteous are in the hand of God' ".
_______________________________________

According to the newspaper report, Mr George Gatey died "as the result of an accident" - but I haven't yet worked out what happened.

A basic search of "George Gatey solicitors" shows references to original legal letters are still kept in The Museum of Modern Art in New York.

I can find no reference to either of the named military sons or daughter in the CWGC register so, therefore, I think they survived the war.

The "Westmoreland Gazette" is still a publication in the Lake District.

Mr. Gatey's headstone does look like a Military / CWGC style headstone.  I wonder if he had a military history of some sort and this headstone was commissioned by his children in the Services - may be ? ..... perhaps ?......  possibly ?

If you wish to see his grave, headstone, then go through the main gate of St. Mark's. Little Common, turn right and go to the very Eastern boundary - he lays next to the East boundary in the rhododendrons.  The lower part of the headstone inscription shows that his wife, who survived him for 24 years, is buried in the same plot.  The inscription shows that Margaret Gatey "late of Portinscale" , which is in the Lake District, died aged 84 years on the 15th June 1964.

 

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alkhamhills
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« Reply #1 on: March 29, 2017, 20:05:14 PM »

George Gatey

Born 18 Sept 1874, Keswick.
Married Margaret Macliver ¼ Sept 1900 Birkenhead.

Probate. Of The Corner, Little Common, Bexhill on Sea. Died at Cooden Golf Course, Bexhill*. Probate to Margaret Gatey, widow, and Norman Gatey, solicitor. Effects £32349.
Norman was his eldest son

*sounds like a heart attack??


In 1901 with wife Margaret & 2 servants at Brantfield, Boness on Windermere. He was a solicitor.  
In 1911 with Margaret & son Norman, & 2 servants. At Haroker Moor (or Hawkes Moor) Windermere. He was a solicitor.
In 1939 George, Margaret(19.5.1880)  & daughter Ruby & 2 others. At The Crover, Bamboo Rd, Bexhill. George a retired solicitor. Against Ruby’s name noted W A T S (presumably Women’s Auxiliary Territorial Service)
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Snowdon
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« Reply #2 on: May 21, 2017, 08:57:54 AM »

In 2011 I interviewed a Royal Marine Commando who was billeted with Mrs Gatey between about September and December 1944.

He provided some really fascinating details about living with the Gatey family, in particular interest to your post the death of Mr Gatey.

Apparently he was playing golf and his ball went into a minefield and he hit a mine with his golf club  and was killed in the explosion.

Best wishes

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Craggs
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« Reply #3 on: May 21, 2017, 09:12:33 AM »

Hello Snowdon and welcome to the Forum,

Is there any open record of the incident with the mine and the golf club ?  

Cooden Golf Course sits on the footprint of the old WWI Cooden Camp.  In WWII the area was, as you will be very much aware, one of the possible sites for a German invasion and would have had minefields to defend against such an attack, being only a stones throw from the beach.

I go to a friends house in Cooden Drive quite frequently so could pop into the golf club if there is any chance of some sort of record being kept.

Thank you for your information and if you do have any more then please do post it.

Noel
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Snowdon
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« Reply #4 on: May 21, 2017, 13:51:53 PM »

Hello Noel

Nice to hear from you.

I don't have any other information, sorry. I live in Staffordshire and the Commando was from Stoke on Trent, so I don't really know your area.

I can send you an audio file of the interview if you would like? It's of a Royal Marine Ken Adams and his wartime experiences in NW Europe., but there's about 10-15 mins about being billted with the Gateys after 45 Commando had returned from Normandy around 19mins in.

Let me know. My email is: johnsnowdon@mac.com

Regards

John
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Snowdon
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« Reply #5 on: May 21, 2017, 23:52:27 PM »

Noel

Bexhill Museum have the same info about George: http://www.bexhillmuseum.co.uk/museum-news/civil-war-dead-honoured-nov-2015-1076.html

John
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Snowdon
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« Reply #6 on: May 21, 2017, 23:55:39 PM »

And the inquest papers are here:

http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/0c20e0f3-15d8-4ee9-a57e-f220d019b12b
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Craggs
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« Reply #7 on: May 22, 2017, 06:56:41 AM »

Thank you John,

I have sent you a 'pm'

Noel
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