Jack Dady, Gentleman
1913 - 2006
We are sad to announce the
death of a much respected and dearly loved member of our community.
Alfred John Dady, known to all as "Jack" passed away peacefully
just after 4pm on Thursday 30th November 2006 at the age of 93.
More information will be added in the
days to come and it is intended that an online "Book of Remembrance" will
be available for anyone wishing to leave a message, their thoughts or
In the interim please email any message
clicking here and it will be posted on this page.
A service of thanksgiving was held at
Fenstanton parish church on January 20th 2007 at 2:30pm.
"My father was born 93 years ago in St Ives
into a very different world of candle light, coal fires and the night cart
for sewerage. Although his mother died when he was 10, Dad had a happy
childhood, not poor, but there was not a lot of money.
A keen Boy Scout, much time was spent outdoors learning about wildlife and
developing an interest in birds which lasted all his life.
My grandfather was very keen on education and made sure that his children
had every possible encouragement to study and develop enquiring minds. A
bright lad, Dad got a scholarship to Huntingdon Grammar School.
Having been brought up in a staunch Conservative family, Dad's sense of
fair play and equality lead him to join the St Ives Labour party of which
he was secretary for a time. Not a very robust organisation - Stafford
Cripps spoke to an audience of 3, one of whom was a well known
A strongly religious upbringing and the arrival in St Ives of a very
approachable high Anglican priest, Father Algy, made Dad seriously
consider a life in the Church. However he finally opted for a career in
As a qualified mechanical engineer he spent the war working in the
Aeronautical Inspection Department, passing aircraft fit to fly, and
defending the country in the Home Guard.
After the war Dad joined BOAC as their best qualified aeronautical
engineer, thanks to his own studies. As a staunch trade unionist I think
he was rather a thorn in the side of management. Most of his working life
was spent overseas, the last 15 years as Engineering Director of Kuwait
My mother was worried that, after retirement, Dad "would sit on his
backside playing with his stamps" After retirement the maternal comments
were more on the lines of "2 hours ago your father went to the Post Office
to buy stamps, but he will be home for lunch" - Dad did like his food.
With a keen sense of order, Dad got the church yard cleaned up and sorted
out the rather chaotic plan of graves. He cleared many footpaths around
the village, often mistaken for a council worker. When he came to map the
paths, he found that one had been blocked by a local company. Having
failed to get this remedied by the District Council, he appealed to the
ombudsman and the problem was resolved - people ignored the old man at
their peril when he was on a crusade!
Dad negotiated with the Charity Commissioners on behalf of various village
charities with which he was involved. He took his work on the Parish
Council very seriously and ensured that the standing orders and terms of
reference for committees were up to date. He was chairman of the Council
for 3 years.
Taking time to talk to the older villagers made Dad realise that their
stories needed to be recorded if they were not to be lost for ever. Thus
began the process which would result in a history of Fenstanton, followed
by one of Hilton. With a readers ticket for Cambridge University and
digging around in local archives he was able to indulge his love of
Just this year Dad wrote notes on "People of the British Isles" "
Religions of India" and "Religions of the British Isles" - just to keep
his mind exercised.
A generous man of integrity and intellect with a strong sense of justice
and great sense of humour. At ease in company whether on the Royal Yacht
Britannia or the Crown and Pipes. That was Jack Dady - a wonderful father,
grandfather and friend."
Patricia Jones - taken from her Eulogy
presented at Jack's funeral.
Dear fellow Fenstanton people.
I met Jack when we moved into the thatched cottage next to the Baptist
chapel. We then moved to Yelling after a few lovely years in Fenstanton What a
I am very very sad
I am very sad to hear that
Mr. Dady, has died, I have very many memories of him, We always use to have a chat when I was on my way taking my children to school, Today my 7 year old daughter came home from school with a prayer she had wrote for
Mr. Dady (what a lovely thought) A wonderful man, who will be sadly missed.
Was very, very sad to hear of the passing of the lovely Jack Dady.
Had the good fortune to spend some time with him recording an oral history interview for the Huntingdonshire Heritage Programme in 2004.
It was fun!
Jack then came along to a special event at Wheatfield School where the children had been learning about the history of St Ives and he was a real hit with them too.
Will cherish his book.
We have known Jack since we were very young, we always shared an interest in birds, and the wild life, found across the fields down the village Fen, this we shared up to recent years. A lovely man who will sadly be missed from the village , sleep well Jack.
from Lewis & Chrissie Bowles
I write as Chairman of the 1st Fenstanton & Hilton Scout Group to say how wonderfully supportive Jack was, and how much we shall miss him.
Over the years he was always there to help us keep the fun going - from buying stamps at Christmas Post time, to kind donations to coming along and talking to the youngsters themselves. It really was a sight to behold when a room full of normally very noisy youngsters sat wrapt and listened as he talked.
He was a true gentleman who gave us as a Scout Group the most precious gift anyone can - his time.
We hope to be able to send at least one representative along to the service on January 20th as a small token of our thanks for all he did for us.