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Andrew Blakeney-Edwards' Headstone

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For over 30 years, Andrew's grave has had no headstone. Knowing that the circumstances which had obviated one had changed, I stopped in Cheddar last week whilst traveling down to the West Country to watch some cricket.

There is now a headstone. Unfortunately, the monumental mason was unaware of the different concertina systems and an English is depicted! Nevertheless, I'm pleased that the family chose to highlight this aspect of Andrew's short life.

There are now three headstones in England - to my knowledge - which depict a concertina.

Best wishes,


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  • 1 year later...

I remember him quite well from the times at Wells Cathedral School. I may even have stayed with him on exeat weekend. I was saddened to hear of his passing but pleased to learn of his musical achievements. 

I think it was he who excelled at running, and I remember one occasion where I took part in a practice race where I managed to keep up with him, much to everyone's surprise, though he seemed to be none worse for wear, while I was half dead from the attempt.

I guess I maybe misremembering some of this but I do remember for sure that I liked him.

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I met Andrew several times at sessions at Sidmouth, usually in the Balfour Arms. He was a hugely talented musician, and he appeared to me to be one of those people who shine at whatever they turn their hand to.  I found him very likeable, and was very sad to hear of his untimely death.  A great loss.  I don't know the circumstances Roger refers to, but it's pleasing to see him memorialised.

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17 minutes ago, hjcjones said:

... he appeared to me to be one of those people who shine at whatever they turn their hand to.


Coincidentally, John Kirkpatrick named the the lament he wrote for Andrew's funeral "Shiner".


Why did it take so long to have a headstone put up?

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Memorial to Frederick William Hobart, died 1927, and his widow Frances Sophia Hobart (nee Watts) d. 1941


This photo is on the ICA Facebook site, which I have attached here without permission; happy to remove if requested.


I know little about them, nor which of them may have played concertina. IIRC from previous (pre-www)research attempts, they lived in London, and the grave is also somewhere in London.


Hopefully some one can expand on this.


Gravestone of Frederick William Hobart + concertina.jpg

Edited by malcolm clapp
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  • 2 weeks later...

This discussion has recently been brought to my attention as Fred Hobart was my great grandfather.


His grave is in Highgate Cemetery in North London. This cemetery is divided between two locations and the east cemetery is famous as the location of Karl Marx' grave. Fred is in the, if anything, more interesting older west cemetery, home to many eminent C19th century figures and location of the famous catacombs.

However, as far as our family was concerned, it was their local cemetery and they had a liking for giving family members "a good send off" [they lived in Tufnell Park, nearby]. 

Fred is remembered within the family as a talented natural musician. It was said that he could hear a tune once and play it back, chords and all. He was much in demand on charabanc trips where he accompanied the singing and shared the beer. His daughter was awarded a place at the Royal College of Music so his talent ran in the family, but sadly not as far as me! 

The concertina was left to my grandfather by Fred who gave it to my mother and then passed to me. I have had it reconditioned and returned to playable condition. I use it regularly at the two folk groups I attend.

This is the concertina carved into the gravestone. It has been passed down the Hobart branch of my family and when it was reconditioned it had Fred's name and address written inside!

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  • 11 months later...

The band recently played at our Morris side's carol concert.

By playing Fred's concertina for In the Deep Midwinter we were able to unite two residents of Highgate Cemetery: Christina Rosetti[who wrote the words] and Fred Hobart. They almost certainly did not meet in life, but we were able to bring them together in death!

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