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Page updated - 05 September 2007


Mike Marsh


Mike Marsh began his working life in 1955 as a Junior Quantity Surveyor in London. However, by the time he had completed his National Service in 1959 he had decided on a change of career; he went to a teacher training college and became a teacher of woodwork. This typifies Mike’s ability to change his pattern of life without any reservations on his part - a talent he has used throughout his life.


Mike and his wife Jeanette moved to Cornard in 1965. Mike had been a teacher at Dulwich in south London at a comprehensive school with 1600 boys. The Sudbury Boys’ Secondary School at which he started teaching in Mill Lane held 360 boys, so Mike noticed a big difference. He soon got involved in the Scout Movement here having already had experience of running Scout Troops not only in Croydon where he used to live, but also in Cyprus for the English families stationed there whilst he was serving in the RAF. Mike ran the Rover Scouts, now the Venture Scouts, in Sudbury, eventually becoming District Commissioner - a post he held for five years. He was also a scout canoeing instructor and county sailing instructor in the 1960’s.


Mike gets very involved in his many hobbies - in 1948 at the age of ten he took some holiday photos and rather than take them to be developed as most people would, he bought the chemicals to develop them himself. He used to belong to the Sudbury Camera Club and has many lovely photographs, but now uses his computer to store and print out the photos; presently there are some 14,000 on his computer.


When the school in Mill Lane closed in 1972 Mike taught woodwork at the Sudbury Upper School but retired from there in 1985 through ill health. When the Museum of East Anglian Life opened its new Boby Building in 1986, Mike established the Wheelwright’s Workshop demonstrating the making of wheels for the wagons and carts, whilst working at the craft of woodturning himself. Mike wrote a book on Wheelwrighting and was on the Register of the Worshipful Company of Turners.


In 1992 he returned to Sudbury Upper School on a part time basis as a technician in the workshops whilst still working at the Museum in the afternoons. Later this became full time by adding computer network maintenance in the afternoons, at which time he ceased to work at the Museum. His last final four years of working were at Culford School where all his time was spent running the computer networks.


Although now fully retired Mike still keeps very busy - he is an amateur radio enthusiast and was a founder member of the local Amateur Radio Club in the mid 1970’s. He is also very interested in steam engines, taking a trip every year on one of the steam trains still running in the country. He is on the committee of The Royal British Legion and been their Standard Bearer for 4 years. This organisation is growing in size in the area and carry out a lot of social events as well as helping ex-servicemen.


Mike is also a member of CAMRA - the organisation that campaigns for Real Ale and has visited all the local breweries. He is currently Membership Secretary for the U3A - a flourishing organisation for older people in Sudbury - and takes part in six specialist groups within the U3A. On top of all this Mike was at one time a relief organist at St. Gregory’s Church and played at his son’s wedding and his mother’s funeral. Mike and Jeanette have two sons, both still living in the area, and four grandchildren. It can safely be said that Mike has not wasted his life but has used every moment to full advantage and long may he and Jeanette continue to do so.


Interview by Joan Herbert (Cornard News) - 13 Aug 2007