Death of ‘Old Woodingdeaner’ Dick Cuthbertson 1926 – 2017

Painting of The Beehive, Crescent Drive North, Woodingdean by Douglas Holland from a c. 1930 photograph by Duncan Cuthbertson

Painting of The Beehive, Crescent Drive North, Woodingdean by my mum’s uncle Douglas Holland from a c. 1930 photograph by dad’s father Duncan Cuthbertson.

My dad was born in Woodingdean, 1926, shortly after his family moved into the village. The emerging village of shacks and tracks was almost nearly civilised by the time of his arrival. There was a shop or two, a cafe, and the Downs Hotel had just been opened the year before. Nevertheless, on the Downs Estate, east of the Falmer Road, it was a few years before such luxuries as tarmacked roads, electricity, or mains water arrived.

At the time of his death, as far as we are aware, whilst he was not the oldest person in Woodingdean, he was the oldest surviving indigenous Woodingdeaner.

I have touched on the early days of Woodingdean in two previous blog entries, Woodingdean and the Great War; Common Origins, and WW2 & the Woodingdean Downs Talk, as well as in the last two draft chapters of my Newmarket Farm book, Chapter 8. New Developments — 1911–1925, and Chapter 9. Brighton Corporation — 1925– Present. More can be read in the three books on Woodingdean’s early history by Peter Mercer. One day soon I hope to write of some of my dad’s experiences of early Woodingdean in more detail. But not today.

Meanwhile, here are a very few pictures of some of his contributions to our dig.

Looking SW from front to back of house; 3rd May 2013.

Looking SW from front to back of house; 3rd May 2013.

Looking N at excavation of the possible front door; 3rd May 2013.

Looking N at excavation of the possible front door; 3rd May 2013.

Newmarket Cottage, looking SE; 3rd May 2013.

Newmarket Cottage, looking SE; 3rd May 2013.

Cast iron lid of stove found on surface of rubble mound; 7th April 2013

Cast iron lid of stove found on surface of rubble mound; 7th April 2013

My parents with Mr Edwards. Michelham Priory WW2 Event, 19th August 2015.

My parents with Mr Edwards. Michelham Priory WW2 Event, 19th August 2015.

He was a quiet, intelligent man, practical man, with a sense of humour, adventure, appreciation of nature, and a belief in our responsibilities to others and the planet. He will be missed by many.

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3 thoughts on “Death of ‘Old Woodingdeaner’ Dick Cuthbertson 1926 – 2017

  1. I have loved reading your blog, David and feel I have come to know your family through it. I was very sorry to read that you have lost your dear dad and send my sincere condolences to you and your mum. Helen

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