Keith Knowlton - An Appreciation by Martin West and Mike Hosker
Keith Knowlton, who died at home on 2nd March, was born in 1930 at Hayes, Middlesex, the oldest of three boys. He did his National Service, during which he met Eileen and they married in 1953. He qualified as a member of the Plastics Institute and moved to the North West in 1968 to work for Ciba Geigy. He and Eileen, with their three sons, set up home in Arley End.
Over the years the village here has been greatly enriched by Keith’s presence. In the 1970s the small, privately run Nursery School was about to close, just as more young families were arriving. Keith, then Chairman of the C.A., wisely and skilfully negotiated to save it in community ownership. As a Parish Councillor – eventually becoming Chairman there too – he strove to secure the old primary school building as our Village Hall. We remain grateful to Keith, and to Charles the late Lord Grey, for their crucial assistance and leadership in acquiring these two valued assets for the village. Keith’s involvement however, did not end there since he continued to fund raise and to work long and hard to maintain the Hall with his DIY expertise.
Keith was a keen local golfer and a talented photographer. He loyally supported Eileen's valiant efforts for the long ago Youth Club and in her decades of tireless work for the Pat Seed Fund and “Christie’s.” The legendary Annual Sports Day here benefitted too from his involvement and he graced our Village Show with the prize produce from his allotment. His lengthy period as Chairman of the Primary School Finance Governors is remembered with great gratitude. All this work and his commitment to Knutsford “Probus” gave us Keith as a model for the “Big Society” long before David Cameron discovered the idea!
We extend our deepest sympathy to Eileen in her loss and to Mark, Ian and Alan and all the family, while assuring them that Keith and his legacy will not be forgotten.
Mike Hosker/Martin West
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