1937 - 2003

 North Craven 
 Heritage Trust 

Roy Gudgeon was elected to the Committee of the Heritage Trust at the AGM of 1994. He was elected Chairman in 1995 and he continued in that post for 7 years until standing down in 2002. He had decided not to accept a fourth triennial period on the Committee after the 2003 AGM. He died in Airedale Hospital on 21st October 2003 after a short and rapidly progressive illness. But that brief paragraph needs considerable expansion to reflect the benefits he brought, and continues to bring, to the well-being of the Trust. Like all organisations it is necessary to evolve and to do so in a manner and at a rate acceptable to its supporters. He became Chairman at a time when communication with the Building Preservation Trust and the Museum of North Craven Life needed to be re-established. The Sunday Walks were re-invigorated, with attendance and interest reaching new heights. The Know Your Area evening walks were a popular innovation, as were the occasional day time events. Publications under the auspices of the Trust were encouraged and several came to fruition. The Journal took a step change improvement in the quality of its presentation. The manner in which these changes were done was all important to their success, for Roy was no 'detached' Chairman but was involved, indeed at the forefront of all these activities. As a distributor he had the longest list of members by quite a margin. Visiting, re-visiting and cajoling advertisers for the Journal, for example, was a time-consuming activity which few realised he carried out. He uncomplainingly took on so many of the small but necessary tasks without which the Trust would not have continued to flourish in the way that it has. Roy lived for much more than the Trust and its activities. He was born in Surrey, but most of his childhood was spent in Devon and Cornwall (why else would he support Torquay United?) which might account for his empathy with farming and rural affairs. After National Service in Germany, he was employed by a commercial bank from which he later took early retirement and came to live in Ribblesdale. Here he was able to enjoy hill-walking to the full, as well as involving himself in the charitable and social life of the area. He was a man who delighted in setting and achieving targets - whether his own, for example in climbing Mount Kilimanjaro two years after hospitalisation with a burst appendix, or helping with the planning and organisation which allowed others to achieve theirs. The high places gave him spiritual enjoyment, but he was just as pleased to have others plan and lead lower level walks which explored the history of the locality. He has also collected and collated much history of his own parish of Lawkland, for which he acted as Clerk to the Parish Meeting. When next you climb Ingleborough, or even see it in one of its many varied moods, you may be reminded of a man who contributed much to the Trust and, as they say, 'made a difference'.

H. Foxcroft.







Courtesy of the Craven Herald




The symbol of the three fishes is found at 'Resting Stones' and is a fitting tribute to sit with the Obituary for Roy Gudgeon who told Diana Kaneps about it.