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Tuesday, 19 May 2015

Maurice Chown.

Very sad news, Maurice, as many will have known has been struggling with cancer passed away last night.


Mitch said...

I was wondering about him while walking around Hendre lake this morning.Very sad.

Richard G. Smith said...

Filled with sadness for losing a long time friend - and pleased to have seen him just recently at the Little Bunting. Although he was clearly frail he was still cheerful. My father died of the same complaint and I am glad that Maurice did not suffer long as my father did. RIP dear friend.

Slaphead said...

A very sad day indeed, Maurice was one of those people you could not dislike, always polite, always pleasant and always a pleasure to be with. He will be very much sadly missed by many.

I first met him in 'The Gower' in the early 80's and did a number of twitches with him to places like Cley and Portland and more recently he would join us for the local quiz on a Tuesday night, he was a very knowledgable man. I last saw Maurice at RGW a few months ago, we spent a few hours there with not a lot to see but much to talk about! RIP Mr Chown.

steve howcroft said...

Fondly remembered and sadly missed.. Rip Maurice

tiger said...

Very saddened by the news of Maurice, my immediate memories are of his great asset to the Pub Quiz and, endorsing above comments by Nigel, I too shared some memorable twitches many years ago, alwals a pleasure to meet him out & about, RIP MC !

Phil B said...

Extremely saddened by the news of Maurice. Been reflecting on many good birding trips in his company both here and abroad, and on many more nights putting the birding world to rights over a pint. Farewell 'Little Big Man'.

Steve Hinton said...

1990 Alex, myself, Maurice, Johnny Ball and just a few others were off to Tresco for the day.
I remember we were chatting as the boat left the quay. My CB radio crackled into life when I`m sure someone said "Black billed Cuckoo St Marys" I screamed "stop turn around" but Maurice and Johnny casually kept on chatting!!they never needed it, and wanted to carry on to Tresco! At that moment I hated Maurice and Johnny!
Eventually Alex and myself got back to St Marys and saw it and we all shared a beer that evening.

I also first met Maurice up the Gower pub on a Tuesday. Listening to his tales of birding whether it was twitches or his many trips around the world. He sold me all his British Birds volumes which I still have, but now feel worth a lot more.
I had total admiration for the guy, always pleased to see him. He will be sadly missed.
Glamorgan has lost a birding legend!

Seymour said...

Maurice was a good friend and birding buddy over the past 30-odd years and I'm extremely saddened by the life that's been lost. I've never met anyone more deserving of the word "Gentleman".
I've many memories of times we shared but him celebrating his 50th birthday with the Cardiff crew in the disco of the Porthcressa while dancing in his old Barbour' with a pint of Guiness spilling everywhere brings a nostalgic smile to my face....
As Richard has mentioned, I'm glad his suffering didn't endure.
Goodbye old friend,

Alex said...

Very sad news. As pretty much everyone has said, Maurice was one of the most genuinely nice people you could meet. I first met Maurice when birding at Sluice Farm with my father in the early Eighties. I think he had just returned from one of his lengthy foreign trips Nepal or maybe Australia. Foreign birding trips were very much a part of his passion, Nepal, India, Africa, China, South and North America and he built up a healthy World List of several thousand species. Although those who knew Maurice well, knew that he was never really interested in the numbers, he just enjoyed birding and travelling in different places. In later years, I had the pleasure of birding with Maurice on a few European trips, after his more exotic trips were curtailed following a serious illness after an Ecuador jaunt. Maurice always wore the sensible hat, and I've just been having a chuckle about his face on some of the occasions we contemplated taking the hire car off road down some dodgy track or zoomed past a "Keep Out or be Shot" sign!!

Maurice used to tell me he was not really a twitcher, and I always responded by saying in that case could I have his Yellow-bellied Sapsucker and one of the 3 Scarlet Tangers he had seen in Britain (yes 3!). Steve's story of him casually strolling off to look for an Aquatic Warbler in 1990 when news of the Black-billed Cuckoo broke was classic Maurice, laid back and more interested in enjoying his birding.

And yes, he danced the night away in the Porthcressa Disco in his Barbour on his 50th birthday, blissfully unaware that someone was topping his Guinness up with whiskey !!

Many many nights in the Gower pub discussing birds and all sorts of other things and many great memories from Scilly, Biscay, Norfolk, Europe and local & sometimes not so local twitches. Maurice always kept an eye on the mighty Bluebirds and over the years we had some interesting debates about the fortunes of the club.

In later years,as Nigel said above he proved to be somewhat of a wily old fox on quiz nights at the Taffs Well Inn, knowledgable across a whole range of subjects. If I had ever been mad enough to go onto Who Wants to be a Millionaire then Maurice would have been a shoe in as one of my phone a friends.

Thanks for the memories MC.RIP

Joek Roex said...

Sorry to hear this sad news. Kind man Maurice RIP.