Home   News   Article

Subscribe Now

Saying farewell to Hunstanton’s Brian Holmes





In his weekly Turnstone column, Hunstanton writer John Maiden reflects on the lives of two former members of a town Society...

Last Tuesday saw members of the Hunstanton Society and family members paying tribute to Brian Holmes for all his hard work over many years. It seemed highly appropriate that following his funeral at Mintlyn Crematorium, a reception was held at the Hunstanton Heritage Centre, which has been the beneficiary of Brian's endeavours in making visitors, as well as new local residents, aware of the town's amazing past and its potential for future improvement.

In fact, the Heritage Centre, with its band of dedicated volunteers, embodies the slogan: ‘Looking to the future while preserving the best of the past,’ which was adopted when the Society began life as Hunstanton Civic Society in October 2002.

Twinning signing in the Council Chamber
Twinning signing in the Council Chamber

Having paid my own special thanks to Brian in this column and in ‘Hunstanton Town & Around’, Brian's wonderful family kindly gave me the opportunity to add a few words following son Jonathan's tribute to him as a father. It was at this point that I suddenly realized just how much I was going to miss Brian's input when it came to my limited ability to speak in public.

Instead of a script, I have usually relied on a sequence of illustrations, with Brian deciding the length of time each one should remain on the screen. While collecting my thoughts, I decided to read an email received earlier in the day from a former member of the USAF 67th Special Operations Squadron.

On a weekday afternoon in 2018, Senior Master Sergeant Ken Wilson had driven up from RAF Mildenhall with his wife Kari to be present at the installation of the Twinning Sign on Redgate Hill, along with Town Mayor Amanda Bosworth, flood survivor Neil Quincey, Brian Holmes and others. Brian had produced a mock-up of the sign for use at the Twinning ceremony, held at the Town Hall in 2016, where Ken witnessed the signing of the Twinning document by Lt Col Brad Downs and Town Mayor Andrew Murray. It is easy to see how a couple of pictures would have been helpful, prior to reading this email from Ken Wilson.

SM Sgt Ken Wilson witnesses the Twinning document on May 6, 2016
SM Sgt Ken Wilson witnesses the Twinning document on May 6, 2016

"Kari and I are deeply saddened to hear about the passing of Brian. Please accept our heartfelt condolences and know that my thoughts and prayers are with his family during this difficult time. Brian was a wonderful person who touched the lives of many. His kindness, generosity, and warmth will always be remembered. He will be greatly missed by all who knew him. With sincere sympathies, Ken."

Town Mayor Andrew Murray signs the Twinning document on May 6, 2016
Town Mayor Andrew Murray signs the Twinning document on May 6, 2016

Unfortunately, I have to close today's column on another sad note. Today I will be attending the funeral of Ivy Scales, another Hunstanton Society member. Brian and I had just finished one of our presentations on the history of my hometown, held in a smallish room at the Golden Lion Hotel, when Ivy and her sister Barbara arrived due to a mix-up with the start time. Without further ado, Brian and I repeated our presentation and Ivy became a much-valued Society member, She will be greatly missed. More about Ivy next week.



This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies - Learn More