Search

Community stalwart and carnival organiser dies

PUBLISHED: 10:21 05 November 2010 | UPDATED: 10:25 05 November 2010

Caister Canival organiser Bill Fortescue pictured with late wife Patsy has died from  cancer.

Caister Canival organiser Bill Fortescue pictured with late wife Patsy has died from cancer.

Archant

A COMMUNITY stalwart and leading Caister Carnival organiser has died from prostate cancer at the age of 79. Bill Fortescue passed away on Sunday at the GP unit at Northgate Hospital.

Bill Fortescue

A COMMUNITY stalwart and leading Caister Carnival organiser has died from prostate cancer at the age of 79. Bill Fortescue passed away on Sunday at the GP unit at Northgate Hospital.

He was a member of the original committee that organised the 1977 carnival and was usually seen at the head of the procession until 2009.

Mr Fortescue joined Norfolk Broads Lions Club in 1987 and over the following years held many officer posts including president in 1994/95. For years he took his regular turn in transporting older people to their lunch club at Hemsby and acting as Father Christmas on the sleigh.

He was well-known to a generation of young people in the village, running Caister Youth Centre for more than 20 years.

Born in Southtown, in 1931, Mr Fortescue was educated at Edward Worlledge School. He passed the 11 plus, but the grammar school had been evacuated to Nottinghamshire during the war and he did not take up a place.

Leaving Cobholm Senior School at 14, Mr Fortescue started as office junior at Chamberlin, Talbot and Bracey solicitors.

Later learning shorthand and typing at evening classes he was secretary to the managing clerk.

He moved to Divers and Sons, wine merchants, in 1954 and in 1961 to Superior International as accounts clerk.

Mr Fortescue was head chorister and soloist for a number of years at St Mary’s Southtown and later a server.

Serving on the Great Yarmouth Council of Youth from 1947 Mr Fortescue was elected youth mayor of the borough for 1952-53.

He was one of the youngest members of Gorleston church council and later on the PCC at Holy Trinity, Caister.

He married Patsy in October 1955 and the couple had three children, Susan, Julie and Paul and six grandchildren. The family were his priority at all times.

After obtaining a diploma in youth work his first appointment was at the Netherhall School, Cambridge as youth tutor. While working in Cambridge the family were allocated a council house on Fortescue Road.

However, Mr Fortescue longed to return to Norfolk.

He successfully applied for a job as district youth and community officer at Caister Youth Centre in 1966. His time there brought many changes to the centre, including one of the first floodlit sports areas in the district.

Those were the days of an excellent youth service and Mr Fortescue ran Duke of Edinburgh Award courses, camps and summer expeditions. He led adventure weeks at Holt Hall for disadvantaged young people and was a tutor on many leader training courses before retiring in 1987. For many years he was one of the Toc H meals on wheels drivers and served on Caister Playing Field management committee.

After his retirement he was offered a job back at Chamberlin, Talbot and Bracey, now Chamberlins, and later became the office manager until his final retirement in 1996.

From 1970-2002 he was on Caister Playing Field management committee and for a number of years was involved in fundraising events for St Edmund’s Church, West Caister.

Losing wife Patsy last year after her brave struggle against cancer was something which hit him very hard despite the strong support of his family.

The funeral is taking place at 1pm on Friday, November 12, at Holy Trinity Church, Caister. The family has requested donations to Nelson’s Journey, Macmillan Cancer Support and Northgate Hospital GP unit.

Other News

Yesterday, 19:52

The A47 has been cleared after a two vehicle car crash.

Yesterday, 18:07

An historic Great Yarmouth housing estate is in line for a multi-million pound makeover which will improve housing for more than 1,000 people and hopefully build new homes for a few more.

Yesterday, 17:05

Business owners have warned that people are too scared to go onto a town centre street amid fears of a rise in violence at weekends.

Yesterday, 17:01

American Football used cheerleaders, cricket turned to T20, and football had the short-lived Golden Goal.

Most Read

Yesterday, 17:05

Business owners have warned that people are too scared to go onto a town centre street amid fears of a rise in violence at weekends.

Read more
Twitter
Mon, 12:33

A road rage incident in Great Yarmouth saw a man leave his car and try and get into another driver’s car when it was stopped at traffic lights.

Read more
Mon, 15:17

A woman who was wanted by police on recall to prison has been found in Great Yarmouth.

Read more
Norfolk Police
Yesterday, 07:17

A woman thought she was going to die as her ex-partner stamped on her head twice and broke her nose, a court heard.

Read more
Norwich Crown Court
Mon, 17:24

Emergency services were called to Great Yarmouth town centre after a disused lamp post caught fire on Monday afternoon.

Read more
Rescue Service

Local Weather

Sunshine and Showers

Sunshine and Showers

max temp: 8°C

min temp: 6°C

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the Great
Yarmouth Mercury

e-edition today

Subscribe

Newsletter Sign Up

Great Yarmouth Mercury weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy