Thursday, 11 August 2022

Footballer and town sergeant who welcomed Princess Anne

STAN COX died peacefully on October 19 at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford, aged 83.

STAN COX died peacefully on October 19 at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford, aged 83.

He was born in Shiplake and went to the village primary and then Rotherfield School. Stan completed an apprenticeship at Stuart Turner in Henley where he met his future wife Betty.

In 1951 he joined the Royal Electrical Mechanical Engineers and was stationed mostly in Egypt.  After being demobbed he was in the Territorial Army for three- and-a-half years.

Stan and Betty married in 1957 at St Mary’s Church in Henley and moved into their first home together in Park Road. They had two daughters, Christine and Maureen, and six grandchildren, Rebecca, Dom, Ben, Richard, Michael and Henry. In 1967 they moved to St Mary’s Close where they spent many happy years. After working at the Cowley Motor Works for many years, in 1977 Stan joined Betty at Henley town hall after being offered the prestigious job of town sergeant and town hall keeper.

His civic duties included assisting the Mayor and carrying the mace on official occasions. He enjoyed the opportunity to meet people, including giving tours of the town hall to schoolchildren. He was very proud to be invited to the welcoming party for Princess Anne in 1977.

After the girls left home and Stan and Betty retired, they moved to a bungalow in Abingdon.

Stan enjoyed football and cricket and as a youth played football, firstly for the YMCA and then Shiplake and Reading Aerodrome. He was 25 when he moved to Henley Town Football Club where he continued to play until retirement.

He stayed with the club and was given lifetime membership. He managed the reserve team for many years and was also club treasurer. He continued to actively support the club, still attending their games, even after moving to Abingdon.

Stan loved playing crib and dominos at the Henley Conservative Club. Betty and Stan helped run bingo in Henley and in later years they both enjoyed going to the bingo at Abingdon Conservative Club.

Stan had a great passion for music, especially playing the piano and keyboard. He loved attending the organ concerts in Henley and Abingdon and occasionally visited Blackpool Tower. He has passed on his interest and passion for music to his grandchildren, especially Dom and Ben, who became music teachers.

Stan was a dear friend to everyone that knew him and his family meant the world to him. He will be fondly remembered and sadly missed.

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