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News > Announcements > Obituaries > JOHN MALTBY (48-53)

JOHN MALTBY (48-53)

16 Dec 2020
Obituaries

John Maltby (48-53) died in late-August, 2020. His death was not covid-related and he spent a mercifully short period of illness. He leaves a widow, Ann, and a son, Colin. His lifelong friend Tim Hendley (49-53) writes:

“John came to Pangbourne a year before me but left in the same year, albeit at both ends of that year. He was a Harbinger Cadet Captain and I was the same in Hesperus, but we did not socialise at that time. After Pangbourne and National Service, we kept in touch and arranged a somewhat unusual short holiday on the Norfolk Broads in the late-1950s sailing a hired half-decker, loaded with camping equipment. A non-OP friend of John's joined us, and all I remember is pitching our tents on the rather wet, muddy river bank alongside our boats.  I have no idea of what we did for food or for washing and toilet facilities. The following year we were joined by Richard Walton (49-53) for a full week of sailing on one of the lovely old wooden sailing boats from Hunters Yard. 

Marriage and work intervened at this point in the mid-1960s. On my honeymoon in S.W. England, I remember calling on John and Ann, who were living in Somerset at the time. John had started a career in the insurance business while I headed into overseas banking with Barclays Bank DCO. John and family moved to New Zealand in 1974, searching new horizons, but decided to return to the UK in 1976.

In 1982, John left the insurance business. With Ann, he bought a bookshop in Crowborough. They sold this in 1991 and then opened another bookshop in Cheltenham, with Ann selling the books and John 'keeping the books.’ This shop was sold in 2005 after they found it impossible to cope with Amazon and its discounting.

In the meantime, John and I had re-established contact. Through the good pages of the OP Magazine, we discovered we both had an ambition to see Mt. Everest with our own eyes. John found that KE Adventure Travel had a couple of openings on their 2001 trip to Everest Base Camp on the north side in the Rongbuk Valley, Tibet, so we both signed up for what turned out to be an epic undertaking. John contributed a story for Issue 32 of the magazine.

John introduced me to the Internet while we were waiting in Kathmandu, showing me how to read/download emails from anywhere in the world.  I did not even own a computer at that point!

In recent years, we attended a couple of OP Dinners at the College together as well as one Founders’ Day with Tony Sissons (49-53) and one of the Over 60s lunches at the Turf Club.  John and Ann were living in a beautiful cottage in Prestbury, Cheltenham, near the race course.

So, goodbye old mate. We had some good times together.  Always cheerful, low-key, with a great sense of humour. Going to miss you. That's the trouble with growing older. Although it is wonderful to see your own family growing up, it is nothing short of desolating when a lifelong friend departs on the last journey. At least we did share some good ones in our time.”    

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