Monthly Archives: April 2020

Alan Iles

1951 – Some choristers on a Sunday

It is sad to report the recent death of Alan Iles who only a few months ago retired from the GCOCA committee having served for literally decades.

Alan, known to many as Jim, entered the choir as a probationer in the late 1940s and on leaving the choir and the school took an apprenticeship at the Gloucester Aircraft Company.  He later worked for Lucas and also for Bryce Berger at Hucclecote.  It was during this time he first made himself available to the OC committee.

When in his late 30s his career took a change of direction, he trained as a teacher at a London University training college gaining employment as a Design and Technology teacher with considerable industrial experience.  His first post was in Hailsham, Sussex, then quickly back to Gloucestershire, at Naunton Park Cheltenham finishing his career at Marling School in Stroud.

Alan’s interest in the cathedral and choral music never diminished, he and Jill his wife were regular supporters of the Choral Society and the St Cecilia singers, although Alan had a longserving commitment as a member the Stroud Choral Society.  In retirement he and Jill gave many hours volunteering as cathedral welcomers. His spare time was taken up by playing Bowls, winter and summer.

Alan’s regular presence at GCOCA committee meetings, AGMs and Reunions was greatly valued.

Terry Payne (1933-2020)

1943 – Terry Payne

Terence John Payne (known as Terry) was born on 12th December 1933 and died on 15th April 2020. He was born in Gloucester and after an early education in various local schools successfully on 28th March 1943 took a voice trial given by the late Doctor Herbert Sumsion for a place as a chorister at the Cathedral and a scholarship to The Kings School Gloucester. This was a very happy and fulfilling time.

In addition to his love of music his general education and love of sport was nurtured and enhanced. He played football and cricket for the school and as a player in the latter was an extremely fine wicket keeper. Terry also sang as a boy in the first Three Choirs Festival after the war.

He left school in 1950 and joined the local branch of the National Provincial Bank. However, his heart was not in banking and after National Service he applied and was accepted at King Alfred’s Teacher Training College Winchester in order to follow a career in teaching, his first love. Whilst at Winchester he sang as a Lay Clerk in the Cathedral. After training Terry taught in a number of schools gaining useful experience before he took up his first headmastership at St Edburghs Primary School, Bicester. This position was followed by becoming headmaster of Barley Hill School Thame. During his time at Thame he was a voluntary organist at St Mary’s Parish Church and helped in organising a local chamber choir.

1958 – The Lay Clerks

 In 1958 he married Monica in Gloucester Cathedral and they had a long and happy marriage blessed by two sons, Chris and Nick.

After retirement he started (in his own words) a second career as Secretary and General Organiser of the Thame Agricultural Show. This he did for a number of years during which time the Show grew and prospered.

Eventually he and Monica decided that the time had come to return to their roots and family and returned to Gloucestershire and Minchinhampton where they had many happy years. However, as age crept up on them they decided to move even nearer to the family and they bought a house in Witney.

Unfortunately Monica suffered from increasingly bad health and died earlier this year. Terry’s increasing deafness game him problems and to his great sorrow he was no longer able to enjoy the music which had played so great a part in his life.

He and Monica always gave generously to the communities in which they lived and they will be sadly missed by their family and many friends.

Michael Richards