A pantomime cast dedicated its show to a man who will be greatly missed by all who knew him.
Many people will know Derek Taylor for his time working at the butchers in Bozeat, but also his involvement in the church and running the church hall with wife Pat.
But sadly Derek died on December 16 aged 81.
Among those to pay tribute are Bozeat Players, who dedicated this year’s pantomime to him.
Derek was a familiar face in Bozeat and the surrounding villages after spending nearly 40 years working at WC Garrett & Son butchers.
He took the job after leaving school at 15 and being told by his father to get a job in ‘a proper trade.’
It was during one of his rounds delivering meat to the villages that he first met wife Pat, who was just 11 at the time, outside Grendon School.
Several years later when Pat was 19 and Derek was 22, they married at Grendon Church and went on to enjoy 58 years of married life.
Pat said they used to go everywhere together, apart from her WI meetings, and added: “We had a lovely life together.
“A lot of people have been sharing their memories of him, it’s been a great comfort.
“He was a great family man and a very precious husband for 58 years.”
Pat said Derek, who had three nieces and nephews and four great-nieces and nephews, was ‘a skilled slaughterman’ before working at Tesco when it was still in the Swansgate Centre for 10-and-a-half years.
She said he loved his time there, as well as loving the social life of the village and the church.
A dedication in memory of Derek was printed in the programme for the Bozeat Players’ pantomime, which said he would be ‘greatly missed.’
It also said: “Derek and Pat have been active members of St Mary’s Church and have been ably running the church hall for a number of years.
“Both Derek and Pat liked to attend the shows and they could often be seen helping and supporting at the numerous social events around the village.
“Derek was probably best known for his time working for Sam Garrett, who was the local butcher.
“Derek joined the family firm in the 1950s, the work was hard and it wasn’t unusual for him to work long hours.
“Derek became well-known delivering meat to the local villages, two to three times a week, where he made a number of good friends.
“Derek had many tales to tell of his experiences gained over the years and he had recounted these tales on a number of occasions to appreciative audiences, which came to be known as the Tales of a Butcher’s Boy.
“Derek finished his working career at Tesco in Wellingborough.
“Derek, with this support of his wife Pat, continued to remain active serving the community throughout his retirement.”
Pat said the pantomime dedication was ‘lovely’, and added: “I went to the panto on the Saturday afternoon because we always went and it was very good.”
Derek’s funeral will be at 11.30am on January 24 at Bozeat Church, and is open to anyone who knew him.
Donations from the funeral will be split between the church and the air ambulance service, which airlifted their niece Maxine to hospital following an accident several years ago.