A Tribute to Dick Noake
Following on from our post last month regarding Dick Noake's death, the family have asked us to let everyone know that his funeral will take place this coming Friday, 15th May at 1.30pm in Birmingham. Unfortunately, only six people are allowed to attend and so we ask that OBs and friends raise a glass to Dick from their home at that time.
It is with great sadness that we inform you of the death of Dick Noake (Elmshurst 1959-1964) on Wednesday, 21st April. We take some comfort knowing that he was with his wife, Helen and children, James and Rebecca, at home.
Dick left the School in the same year (1964) that R.G. Routh (former Headmaster) died. Routh was the true embodiment of a Bromsgrovian - loyal, disciplined and faithful to the School, and a visionary for the future. The same can be said for Dick, one of our most loyal and devoted OBs - as School boy, parent, Governor, Trustee and latterly as Chairman of our own Foundation, his commitment to Bromsgrove was unparalleled. He was an Endowment Trustee, joining in 1996, and when the School was incorporated as a limited company in June 2003, Dick came on board as one of our original Governors. He retired from the Board in 2015 after 21 years' service to the School. As Chairman of the Foundation, he drove forward events, regularly hosting the popular Foundation Lecture at his club in London, and was an early pioneer of the life-changing bursaries scheme for children who would ordinarily not be able to attend the School. When he resigned as Foundation Chairman in 2016, the trustees lost a true leader and friend.
As a School boy, Dick was captain of swimming, a member of the water polo and 1st VIII shooting teams, Hon. Sec of the Golf Club and VP of the Debating Society, 1963 and 1964. He was a member of the Choir throughout his career at Bromsgrove, made it to the rank of Corporal in the CCF and, upon leaving the School, received an English Speaking Union Scholarship to America. Dick was House Monitor in his beloved Elmshurst and received the Milliken-Smith Cup. The Drama Review of 1964, his final year, talks of the "Dick Noake Combo", a group of three students who made popular appearances on stage to, we are sure, rapturous applause.
The Executive team know that they echo the sentiments of all in the School family, past and present, in expressing their deep sadness at the loss of a great servant to the School, who supported our every endeavour with wisdom, passion and endearing humility.
Our current Chair of the Foundation, Matthew Taylor adds his own tribute:
"The School has lost one of the rocks on which its success and prosperity have lately been founded and I concur completely with the tribute here from the Executive.
Dick and I were fact in the same firm for twenty-two years, although our paths at Peat Marwick, latterly KPMG, seldom crossed from a combination of geography and industry specialism. This did, however, give us a firm basis on which to build when I became a Foundation Trustee and was able to devote more time to Bromsgrove in my own retirement from accountancy. Dick proved very friendly and supportive from the start and I found the depth of his knowledge and experience invaluable. I shall feel his loss more keenly now that I have myself acceded to the Chair of the Foundation. I shall miss seeing him at our events and am very sorry to see him go."