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Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett

GUEST,Sylvia 07 Jun 03 - 02:44 AM
My guru always said 07 Jun 03 - 04:42 AM
Herga Kitty 07 Jun 03 - 05:32 PM
Zany Mouse 08 Jun 03 - 07:03 AM
GUEST 09 Jun 03 - 06:48 AM
alanww 09 Jun 03 - 06:55 AM
Herga Kitty 09 Jun 03 - 03:06 PM
GUEST,Andy Jackson 09 Jun 03 - 06:17 PM
Snuffy 09 Jun 03 - 07:28 PM
Neil the Goblin 10 Jun 03 - 10:46 AM
My guru always said 10 Jun 03 - 02:21 PM
SussexCarole 10 Jun 03 - 04:09 PM
Morticia 10 Jun 03 - 08:18 PM
Col K 10 Jun 03 - 10:10 PM
JudeL 11 Jun 03 - 03:02 AM
My guru always said 11 Jun 03 - 03:55 AM
RWJ 11 Jun 03 - 04:50 AM
Monksy 11 Jun 03 - 07:13 AM
My guru always said 11 Jun 03 - 08:07 AM
Noreen 11 Jun 03 - 08:24 AM
GUEST,Jimannie 11 Jun 03 - 04:54 PM
My guru always said 12 Jun 03 - 04:43 PM
Hawker 12 Jun 03 - 05:16 PM
Monksy 12 Jun 03 - 05:24 PM
Piers 13 Jun 03 - 01:33 PM
My guru always said 16 Jun 03 - 12:34 PM
alanww 16 Jun 03 - 12:58 PM
GUEST,Jo Gaggs 16 Jun 03 - 05:36 PM
GUEST,Sylvia Merrett 17 Jun 03 - 02:37 AM
My guru always said 09 Jul 03 - 06:20 AM
Noreen 09 Jul 03 - 01:12 PM
GUEST 09 Jul 03 - 01:31 PM
GUEST,Trevor Watts 22 Jul 10 - 04:08 AM
My guru always said 22 Jul 10 - 04:16 AM
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Subject: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: GUEST,Sylvia
Date: 07 Jun 03 - 02:44 AM

Bob Merrett 'Doom and Gloom Bob' of Sidmouth fame passed away on June 3rd.

The funeral will take place on June 17, 12.00 at Merton Cemetery, Garth Road Morden Surrey.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: My guru always said
Date: 07 Jun 03 - 04:42 AM

Thanks to Sylvia for putting this thread up! I know Bob will be missed, an outstanding festival character with a heart of gold and renowned for his 'gloomy' songs. I'll certainly be going along to have a final sing for Bob.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 07 Jun 03 - 05:32 PM

Doom, gloom and despondency workshops won't be the same.... I've posted Sylvia's sad news to umf and the Middle Bar Singers.

Kitty


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: Zany Mouse
Date: 08 Jun 03 - 07:03 AM

Bob will be missed at many festivals. Maybe he won't be gloomy now he has harp and wings.

ZM


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: GUEST
Date: 09 Jun 03 - 06:48 AM

Bob was a regular of the Middle Bar at the Anchor Inn at Sidmouth FF and I often had long discussions with him over many Irish Whiskeys about life and the universe in general and his exploits in particular very late at night at the Royal York Hotel. More recently I saw him at Miskin FF at Easter and at Upton FF on the Mayday Bank holiday weekend.

I will always remember his knack of singing any song gloomily and of singing a sad song so that you wanted to bang your head against the wall and cry out loud ... Dear Bob.

I hope the funeral goes well (I cannot make it myself). I certainly think that he would have enjoyed hearing Keith Marsden's Funeral Song at his own funeral or wake - after all he used to sing it himself ... The first three lines of the chorus go:-

"Till all his other wives came in weeping down the aisle
We had to send for extra chairs they queued for half a mile
They came from near they came from far they filled up every pew! ..."


RIP Bob
Alan


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: alanww
Date: 09 Jun 03 - 06:55 AM

GUEST was me, incase anyone didn't guess ...


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 09 Jun 03 - 03:06 PM

Guest Sylvia

The Anchor Middle Bar singers are discussing (on middlebar@yahoogroups.com) what would be an appropriate contribution from the MBS for the funeral. Did you post the details so anyone could turn up, and is there a way of contacting Bob's family to ask what they'd like?

Kitty


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: GUEST,Andy Jackson
Date: 09 Jun 03 - 06:17 PM

How very sad.. I will be at Bobs final workshop, hopefully to join in an appropriate chorus or two.

Andy


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: Snuffy
Date: 09 Jun 03 - 07:28 PM

What a lovely fellow. He was one of the first people I met when I started coming to festivals, and I always appreciated his company.

We had hoped that his mild stroke at Upton was just a warning, but sadly it was not to be.

WassaiL! V

Let's not have a sniffle .....


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: Neil the Goblin
Date: 10 Jun 03 - 10:46 AM

Dear Sylvia,
    So sorry to hear the news,I hadn't seen him for quite a while,but we will miss his bloody miserable songs at the Chanticleer folk club,and Ido mean that in a nice context.
    I am afraid I won't be able to make the funeral but I will be thinking of you.
      Love from Neil& Martina


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: My guru always said
Date: 10 Jun 03 - 02:21 PM

I've just managed to get a few details from Richard Atkins who was a good friend to Bob, as I know Sylvia won't be around on the MudCat till the end of the week.

Apparently the family have decided on family flowers only.

Donations will be welcome to a drop-in centre (posting name of drop-in centre later) where Bob used to go on a Thursday to help out & have a sing with the regulars. I understand donations are usually collected by the Undertakers who in this instance are:

Sherlock & Sons
190 South Street
Dorking

I'm certain that Sylvia will be updating this thread on her return regarding arrangements on the day for anyone joining us.
Hil


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: SussexCarole
Date: 10 Jun 03 - 04:09 PM

Memories of Bob being presented with a lollipop award for his gloomy & slow rendition of Bonny Light Horseman at Towersey.....Farewell Bob


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: Morticia
Date: 10 Jun 03 - 08:18 PM

I am so sorry to hear this......I'm going to miss him


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: Col K
Date: 10 Jun 03 - 10:10 PM

Another one goes to that great Folk Club in the sky.
My last memory of him was at Upton this year after his visit to hospital and his great pleasure in saying that the rumours of his demise were a little premature. Sadly though it has happened and he will be missed by many.
He was a lovely person and always had time for other people. Sadly I doubt that I can make his funeral, but I am sure that he will be singing from above during the funeral.
He will be missed.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: JudeL
Date: 11 Jun 03 - 03:02 AM

He was one of life's unique characters & there is going to be a Bob shaped hole in a lot of people's lives, including mine. I won't be able to attend the funeral but my thoughts will be with those who can. There's a phrase a heard referring to those who have died as "having gone to sleep in Heaven's arms", remembering Bob's snoring if he's up there sleeping he'll be doing a grand job of keeping the rest of them awake. I'll be raising a glass or two in memory of someone who I never saw approach anything in life with less than good humour, despite the gloomy face. Jude


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: My guru always said
Date: 11 Jun 03 - 03:55 AM

See also this thread


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: RWJ
Date: 11 Jun 03 - 04:50 AM

I am sorry to hear about Bob I did not know his name was Merrett so am late with this thread . I last saw him at Upton he will be missed .

Fare well Bob


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: Monksy
Date: 11 Jun 03 - 07:13 AM

Dear friends
it is lovely to read these tributes to Bob.
His funeral will be at Merton & Sutton Joint Cemetery , Garth Rd, Lower Morden, SM4 on Tuesday 17th June at 12 noon.

Donations for MACA (South)
94b High Street
Epsom
Surrey
KT19 8BJ

(attn Julie Caines)
the money will go to a drop in centre for people with mental health problems. They will appreciate all donations enormously.

I have known Bob since the early 1970s when I met him at Wimbledon YHA Group and then of course we all became regulars at Tanners Hatch Youth Hostel (The Eternal Youth Club of the Soul - to quote a friend)
He had a mixed old life - but then don't we all. It is wonderful to know that the sociable and essentially optimistic Bob reached out to so many people.
Perhaps a good way to commemorate him will be some special singing sessions at the different venues he graced in his life.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: My guru always said
Date: 11 Jun 03 - 08:07 AM

Monksy: thanks for popping the donation details on here - I was struggling with the correct name & address! Oh, and welcome to the MudCat - I notice this is your first posting under this name.
Hil


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: Noreen
Date: 11 Jun 03 - 08:24 AM

Sad news. Bob seemed quite proud on his mini-stroke at Upton and returning to the fold for more singing. He will be missed.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: GUEST,Jimannie
Date: 11 Jun 03 - 04:54 PM


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: My guru always said
Date: 12 Jun 03 - 04:43 PM

It was splendid how Bob returned from the hospital straight back into the sing at Upton!


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: Hawker
Date: 12 Jun 03 - 05:16 PM

We spent a lot of time with Bob at Miskin this year - and Kevin, Myself and the kids were both shocked and saddened by this news. A man such as Bob who can look so gloomy and still retain a twinkle in his eye, who can sing with such melodrama and talk with such intensity cannot fail but leave a hole in the hearts of those that knew and loved him. A man proud to be different! God Bless my friend, We are unable to make the funeral but will sing gloomy songs in your honour. :-(
Lucy


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: Monksy
Date: 12 Jun 03 - 05:24 PM

Thankyou Guru
( My technological ability must be improving - I've never worked out how to get into this before)
I shall print out these tributes to show his family . Unfortunately Bob was estranged from some of his nearest, but I am sure that this collection of good thoughts will be of great help to them in their grieving.

I am afraid that there will not be any singing at the Rose and Crown. Musical celebrations of his life will have to be deferred.

We will be singing All The Good Times at the service.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: Piers
Date: 13 Jun 03 - 01:33 PM

Message from Richard Atkins (Via My Guru Always Said)

There have been several folk who want to express themselves by having a farewell sing for Bob. There is an intention to have a sing on the Tuesday evening, at a venue near to Bob's home.

Anyone interested on the day is welcome to join in and there will be space nearby for tents.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: My guru always said
Date: 16 Jun 03 - 12:34 PM

refresh....


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Subject: Lyr Add: BOTH SIDES NOW (THE TOAST SONG) (parody)
From: alanww
Date: 16 Jun 03 - 12:58 PM

Arrangements for tomorrow, as pasted from the yahoo Middle Bar Group. Tony Day runs the fringe singarounds at the Middle Bar in the Anchor Hotel at Sidmouth Folk Festival:-

To: middlebar@yahoogroups.com
From: "Tony Day"
Date: Sat, 14 Jun 2003 07:49:09 +0100
Subject: [middlebar] Arrangements for Tuesday

I have pulled what seem to be the most relevant bits of info from all the messages.

Please read, and let us know if you can be at any part of the events.

Tony

Itinerary for Bob Merrett's Funeral and Wakes

Middle bar Singer "Gloomy Bob" Merrett passed away recently. His funeral will take place on Tuesday 17th June, on which day a number of MBSers plan to meet in his honour.

Details follow:

The funeral takes place at 12 noon, at the Merton and Sutton Joint Cemetery, Garth Road, Lower Morden, SM4. (See map link below)

Bob will be buried in the family grave. There will be a short service in
the chapel conducted by family and friends, followed by a service at the
graveside with an RC priest.

http://streetmap.co.uk/newmap.srf?x=524280&y=166733&z=2&sv=524250,166750&st=4&ar=Y&mapp=newmap.srf&searchp=newsearch.srf

Be sure to go into this cemetery and not the North East Surrey which is adjacent but separate. Anyone who wants directions by public transport please contact Anna Monks at ammonks@btopenworld.com.

Family flowers only please. The Middle Bar Singers will be represented at the funeral by Andy Jackson (others very welcome) who will be taking a suitable inscribed twig and doing something appropriate with it.

Donations to MACA (mental health after care), which will go towards a drop-in where Bob used to help out and have a sing. The undertakers are:

Sherlock & Sons
190 South Street
Dorking

Alternatively, as Bob left no provision for a funeral, friends are contributing to the cost, which is expected to be around 1600. Please contact Anna if you wish to contribute as she is gathering all contributions on behalf of Margaret, Bob's sister. The Middle Bar will be making a donation, to which you can contribute at the MBS wake if you wish.

Family and friends wake

Those who wish to are welcome to join the funeral party at the Rose and Crown pub on Wimbledon Common afterwards. It is not known how long people will stay at the Rose and Crown, check with Anne Griffin on 07985 518962 at the time to se if they have left, if you are in doubt.

Middle Bar Singers wake

Meet from 5.30 (for 6) if you can, at Spread Eagle pub (Young's), on Parkway, which runs from Camden Town tube station towards Regent's Park (see map below). There are eateries close by, including a Chinese dumpling emporium and one of more Trattoria (much recommended by Kitty and Gerry!)

http://streetmap.co.uk/newmap.srf?x=528786&y=183771&z=1&sv=Parkway&st=1&tl=Parkway,+NW1&searchp=newsearch.srf&mapp=newmap.srf

Should the pub be horrendously over crowded or have run out of beer, look in the Hogshead, on the opposite corner of Parkway and Albert St.

At the appropriate time (around 8) we will be taking the 5 minute walk to Cecil Sharp House (shown on map above), where we hope MBS Gerry Milne will be officiating at the Singer's Night. Please wear your yellows and come prepared to sing your best rousing Middle Bar anthem - no sadness allowed. Be also prepared to join a mass sing on stage of Bob's Toast Song (words below).

The address is:

Sharp's Folk Club
Sharp's Bar (which is in the basement, left of Trefussis)
Cecil Sharp House
2 Regents Park Rd
London NW1 7AY

The club starts as soon after 8 o'clock as possible, when everybody's
got a drink and settled down, and the MC decides that it's quorate.

Overnight crashpads available for out-of-towners at Mark Austin (south London, lives near cemetery) and Annie and Russ (Essex) - make arrangements with them direct (both are on the MBS yahoo newsgroup)

Both Sides Now (The Toast Song) 1971. Chris Clarke

In morning time when I arise
My breakfast fare is no surprise,
I pour the cornflakes, make the tea
And then reach for the bread.
I turn the gas on, light the grill,
And think this time I really will
Stay wide awake, make perfect toast
And start the day well-fed
I'll lightly toast it both sides now,
Both up and down
To golden brown,
The toasting time I will recall,
I really can make toast
After all.

But then I read, to pass the time,
The cornflakes advertising rhyme,
I hear the news, but don't take in
A single item read.
And then an old familiar smell
Invades the dream world where I dwell,
And fills the room with flames and smoke
And fumes of burning bread
I've burnt the toast on both sides now,
Both front and back -
To charcoal black,
The toasting time I don't recall,
I really can't make toast
After all.

And so I scrape it in the bin,
Which makes the slices rather thin,
Then wipe the knife upon the cloth
Back in my dream-like state.
I butter it with marmalade,
Then to correct the mess I've made
Spread butter on the other side
And stick it to the plate
My toast is buttered both sides now,
Both left and right,
I'm none too bright,
The buttering I don't recall,
I really can't make toast
At all.

Thats it folks!


I cannot make it myself but I hope it all goes well ... Goodbye my ol' mate, Bob!
Alan


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: GUEST,Jo Gaggs
Date: 16 Jun 03 - 05:36 PM

Good-bye Bob Merrett.
Condolences to Sylvia and thoughts also go out to Wendy and Charlotte.
I knew Bob from the late seventies, from Tanners Hatch and Sidmouth festivals. Friends and friendship meant a lot to him. Graham and I were touched when he and Sylvia drove all the way From Leatherhead to Hull for a barbeque 4 years ago. When we last saw Bob at Whitby he said that health problems had put other things into perspective and be was spending every weekend he could at festivals and enjoying life to the full. A lesson to all of us.
I'd like to think of him at last:   Home, in Pasadena. Home, where grass is greener.
Sadly missed, Jo Gaggs and Graham.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: GUEST,Sylvia Merrett
Date: 17 Jun 03 - 02:37 AM

Thank you to everyone who has posted on Mudcat with fond memories of Bob. Sidmouth Festival was the focal point of his life. I remember how proud he was to have won the coffin with his vampire song and it took pride of place on the shelf.

Today is now the day and in a few hours a number of people from all stages of Bob's life will be going along to express their last memories of him and to say goodbye.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: My guru always said
Date: 09 Jul 03 - 06:20 AM

Photos from the MBS singout held in Cecil Sharpe's House are now posted here.

Kitty Vernon has kindly checked the photos for me and made the following comments:

The legendary Tom Paley is sitting to the viewer's right when Andy is singing the first song he ever sang in the Middle Bar - "Just as the Tide was Flowing".   And Tom brought his banjo and played it brilliantly.

Gerry Milne was MC and sang "Out in the Back Room" in the first half and MacKintyre (When the Old Dun Cow caught fire) in the second half.

Idris Roker helped lead the standing choruses.

Richard Atkins sang "What's the life of a man" with all MBS with arms around shoulders for the final verse, linking into a circle for the final chorus. Gerry Milne said he was told by one of the Sharp's regulars that the MBS linking into that circle was one of the most moving moments he'd ever seen.

Tony Day sang "The Farmer's toast" in the first half, and I sang the Toast Song in the second half, and we finished up with "All the good times".

Gervase arrived a week late, and sang "Row on" (which Bob used to sing).


Everyone I have spoken to has expressed how moving the whole funeral day was - the funeral itself seemed to be a celebration & reconciliation of Bob's life. The various gatherings during the day and the MBS sing in the evening helped Bob's friends and family to say their goodbyes while supporting each other through the experience.

I understand that the 'MBS twig' which was at the funeral will be taken to the Middle Bar at Sidmouth this year.

May we always have music....
Hil


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: Noreen
Date: 09 Jul 03 - 01:12 PM

Thanks, Hil.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: GUEST
Date: 09 Jul 03 - 01:31 PM

Thanks Hil - and the next time you find yourself at Sharp's, please put your name down on the singer's list. You were very self-effacing on 17 June, and I'm sure Gerry appreciated this as it took until 10.45 to get round all the singers once. (The only individuals to get two spots were a visitor from the States, who did Wild Mountain Thyme as his second song, and Tom Paley.)

Kitty


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: GUEST,Trevor Watts
Date: 22 Jul 10 - 04:08 AM

unfortunately I have just read the sad news of Bobs death after trawling the net.Myself,Edy & Paul Hackman revisited the Hatch,The Pilgrim,& rough camped on Ranmore on 13&14 July 2010 for a nostagic trip down memory lane.It certainly re-kindled our memory of the place,the folks,singers and happy times spent at the Hatch.I have lived in North Yorkshire with my wife Carol and two sons for many years.Paul returned to the UK in 2009 after 29yrs in Australia and Ed lives and works in Croydon.I became quite ill 3yrs ago but hopefully am over the worst.I was 60 yesterday & semi-retired.I have many interesting and lasting memories of Bob going back to 1970.I last met him in The Criceters,Dorking circa 1999/2000.We are hoping to revisit Tanners Folk this coming Sept.but will sadly miss seeing Bob there.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Farewell to Bob Merrett
From: My guru always said
Date: 22 Jul 10 - 04:16 AM

Trevor, so sorry that you have just heard the news about Bob. It's a shame that your trip wasn't last weekend as Tanners their festival weekend at the foot of Ranmore. The camp-fire would have been a good place to share your memories. Hope you can get to Tanners in September.


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