Frederick James Pitstow (d. 1949, aged 69)

Much detail covered in Stacey's "The Pitstows of Saffron Walden" - see reference.


A distinguished career has been brought to a close by the death on May 15th of Mr. Frederick J. Pitstow, of Saffron Walden, at the age of 69.

Mr. Pitstow was the son of the late Frederick Pitstow sen., and had lived in Saffron Walden all his life. He commenced work with a firm of estate agents, but later took over the agency of the Essex and Suffolk Insurance Society. At the time of his retirement be was a district inspector.

In World War I. he joined the R.A.O.C., 1915 and was posted to Salonica, where he was promoted to sergeant. While there he was appointed bandmaster of a band, the members being drawn from 30 different units. He was demobilised in 1919.

As a musician he played the clarinet in [the] Town Band and was a member of the local orchestra, in which he played the bassoon. He was also for some years in the Amateur Operatic Society and had taken leading parts in Gilbert and Sullivan operas.

In the world of campanology he was well known and was one of the Pitstow family who rang the Surprise peals in the latter part the 19th century. He was secretary of Essex Association from 1921-34, being the first layman to hold that office, and was treasurer of the Saffron Walden Society up to the time of his death, an office he had held for over 30 years.

He was also a leading member of the Saffron Bloom Lodge of Oddfellows and had been secretary for many years. Among the offices he had held was Provincial Grand Master of the Cambridge District.

Mr. Pitstow was an ardent Freemason and had been a member of Walden Lodge 1280 for 25 years and was P.M. P.P.A.G.D.C. of Essex and also a Companion of the Walden Chapter 1280.

The funeral took place in the Parish Church on May 19th, at which a large congregation attended. The service was conducted by the Vicar, the Rev. M.R. Sinker, assisted by the curate, the Rev. R. Humphries. Among those present were Mr. A. E. Pitstow (brother), Messrs. H. N. and L. E. Pitstow (cousins), A. W. Coles (vice-president, Middlesex Association), R. C. Heazel (secretary, Essex Association), E. J. Butler, F. W. Housden and W. Prior (Essex Association), J. W. Ward, T. I Dennis and P. Webb (Ely Association), and R. A. Strong, W. Parish, Mr. and Mrs Mumford, L. Turner and T. J. Godfrey, of the local society.

As the cortege left the church a quarter peal of Stedman Triples was rung on the back eight (half-muffled): L. E. Pitstow 1, E. Butler 2, R. C. Heazel 3, J. W. Ward 4, H. N. Pitstow (conductor) 5, T. R. Dennis 6, A. M Coles 7, F. W. Housden 8. Among the many floral tributes were wreaths from the Essex Association and Saffron Walden Society.

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