Tuesday 25th Apr 2023

Bob Finch – BaA 46-53

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Submitted by Patrick Guiton  (BaA 44-52)

Bob and I joined BaA together in those austere years immediately after the War. We had reason to be grateful throughout our lives for the strong ‘grammar school’ education we gained at Housey and for surviving the many challenges of boarding school life in getting it.

When we left CH in the early fifties Bob and I went our own ways and it was a chance encounter nearly  50 years later which put us back in touch and into a good friendship for the next quarter century.  Since we lived on opposite sides of the globe much of this was conducted by correspondence utilising both email and snail mail extensively to explore a range of common interests. However, on my regular long haul trips to UK I was always a welcome visitor to the delightful home full of fine original art work and books which Bob and his wife Sue maintained in Cambridgeshire.

By this stage of his life Bob had moved from an initial training and work experience in Chemistry  through Science Education and on into a love for and skill in exploring English Literature more particularly that of the 18th and 19th century. Teaching adults in a subject area of core interest to Cambridge University but outside its formal structure called for sensitivity but also for self assurance and Bob’s fine record of doing just that over 10 or more years through U3A speaks for itself.

Bob became a consummate wordsmith and enjoyed writing pieces for publication.  By  2016 he was a Governor of CH and he encouraged the school to engage with a topic close to his heart  in a piece written for the Church Times. He produced an Allegory in which King Edward VIth and Bishop Ridley were  brought from the 16th  into the 21st  Century in addressing the problem of unaccompanied  refugee minors in Calais :  in Ridley’s well known but transposed words   “to take out of the streets all the fatherless children and other poore mens children that were not able to keep them “.  It was a memorable reminder of the School’s Founding Charter.

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