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Ian Beith 1939 - 2015

Thursday, 17 December, 2015 -- Helen Wilson

It is with great sadness that we record the death, unexpectedly, of Ian on 5 December 2015. Ian attended Eltham between 1947 and 1955, leaving immediately following O Levels to pursue a career that would lead to his becoming a Chartered Surveyor, a pursuit that was significantly successful, attested by his appointment as the Senior Partner of a highly regarded City firm, Fuller Peiser.He was a dedicated Old Elthamian from the moment he left school. A regular at Foxbury from the mid-1950s onwards, where he enjoyed his rugby and where he was the driving force behind the creation of the squash courts in time for the opening of the Old Elthamians’ Sports Club to all comers in 1972. Apart from playing squash he was also a keen tennis and bridge player and golfer. He served for many years on the Committee of the Sports Club and, in 2009-2011, was President of The Old Elthamians’ Association and, subsequently, its Chairman, a role in which he had hoped to continue for another year or two. During these later years he played a crucial part in the reorganization of the OEA and the creation of The Old Elthamians' Charitable Trust where he was a Trustee.

So much for the bare facts, what of the man? Ian will be remembered for a host of fine qualities. Not only was he one of nature's gentlemen, he was wise, had great presence and authority, without a hint of arrogance; he was a man of utmost integrity, quiet determination and loyalty one of whose most noteworthy qualities was a real warmth towards others and a love of their company.

Ian's passing will be most keenly felt by his adored and adoring widow, Annette, and by his much loved and loving families, to all of whom we extend our heartfelt condolences. He will, as well, be sorely missed by a multitude of friends who can but reflect on how fortunate and privileged they have all been to have had such a friend.

David Norris (1950-58)