Rev Edgar Julius "Baa" FENN M A 
- Born: 16 Jun 1885, Richmond SRY
- Died: 7 Aug 1942, Castlethorpe aged 57
- Buried: 12 Aug 1942, Castlethorpe Churchyard
Cause of his death was cerebral tumour.
Edgar was educated Woodbridge School, Keble College Oxford, M A. Ordained deacon 22 May 1910. Edgar was ordained to the priesthood in 1911 by the Bishop of Ely who gave him an Oxford Press 1611 version bible with apocrypha and references, "translated out of the origional tounges" to commerorate the occasion, inscribed: "Edgar Julius Fenn, in memory of his Ordination as priest in Ely Cathedral on Trinity Sunday, 1911.
Followed by the these letters. "ENTH AYNaMEI TOY II NEYMATOE"
Fenn Edgar Julius M.A. bn 16 Jun 1885; Woodbridge Grammar School 1900-04; Holy Orders Decon 1910; Priest 1911; Aston Clinton Aylesbury Bucks., BA 1907: MA 1914; Ely Theological College 1910; Curate of Haddenham 1910-13; curate of Crawley 1913-18; curate of Aston Clinton 1918-
Keble College Register 1970-1925 NZSOG
Fenn Edgar Julius: Keble Coll. Ox. BA 1907, MA 1914, Ely Th Coll 1910, d 1910, p 1911 Ely, C of Haddenham 1910-13, Crawley 1914-18, Aston Clinton 1918-26, Hanslope w Castlethorpe, Dio Ox from 1926. Castlethorpe Bletchley Bucks.
c1897 Edgar suffered from Poliomyelitis affecting his foot, and left arm which never recovered.
He loved music and was President Church Musical Society.
EDGAR'S CONFESSIONS 23 June 1897
MY FAVOURITE VIRTUE: Honesty
MY IDEA OF HAPPINESS: Going on the river
MY IDEA OF MISERY: Feeling very hot
MY FAVOURITE OCCUPATION: Reading playing croquet
MY FAVOURITE COLOUR: Light blue light pink
MY FAVOURITE FLOWER: Rose violet heliotrope
MY FAVOURITE POETS: Sir Walter Scott
MY FAVOURITE PROSE AUTHORS: Shakespeare
MY FAVOURITE PAINTER: Vicat Cole
MY FAVOURITE FOOD: Strawberries & cream raspberries currants
MY FAVOURITE NAMES: Mabel Edgar Dolly
MY PET AVERSION: Being out in a thunder storm
MY FAVOURITE MOTTO: Tah Dien
Edgar died of a brain tumour some four months after breaking a leg in a fall. He did not marry.
FENN - On Aug. 7 1942, suddenly, at Castlethorpe, the Rev. EDGAR JULIUS FENN son of the late Dr. E. L. Fenn, of Nayland, aged 57.
TIVERTON EXPRESS 14 AUGUST 1942
FUNERAL OF REV. E. J. FENN
Castlethorpe Mourns a Beloved Curate.
The village of Castlethorpe mourns the loss of one who was much loved and respected by all residents.
On Friday last, 7th August, the Rev. Edgar Julius Fenn, curate-in-charge at the Castlethorpe Parish Church, passed away with unexpected suddenness at his residence 1 Station Road, where he had lived during the whole of his ministry of sixteen-and-a-half years at Castlethorpe, with Mr. and Mrs. A. Clarke.
The Reverend gentleman had experienced indifferent health for some time, and about four months ago fell whilst at his home and sustained a fractured leg. He spent fifteen subsequent weeks as a patient of Northampton General Hospital, and was making a good recovery. He returned to his home a week prior to his passing.
Fifty-seven years of age, he was the eighth son of the late Dr. E. L. Fern, of Nayland, Colchester and was educated at Woodbridge School, Suffolk, and Keble College, Oxford. He gained his M.A. degree (Oxon.).
He had held four curacies and came to Castlethorpe from Aston Clinton, near Aylesbury.
At Castlethorpe he took a keen interest in all organizations working for the welfare of the village community, and his practical sympathy with all residents of the village was irrespective of religious denomination. He had been described as a " true pastor". He worked hard for the restoration of the Parish Church tower and roofs, and it was a source of gratification to him when this work was completed a few years ago.
He had a love for music and was an active president for the Church Musical Society, which gave many public performances in Castlethorpe and adjoining villages. He was president of the Castlethorpe Hospital Week Committee and was treasurer of the newly formed Youth Squad organisation.
Tributes from the Bishops of Oxford and Buckingham were read at the funeral service an Wednesday afternoon to the large assembly of mourners who filled the village church where the deceased gentleman had ministered so faithfully. These messages were read by the Rev. J. Percy Taylor (Vicar of Hanslope), who broke his holiday at Ramsgate to officiate at the service.
Dr. Kenneth Kirk, Bishop of Oxford, wrote: " I am more distressed than I can possibly write in words in the death of dear Edgar Fenn. I loved him so much and I wish to convey my deepest sympathy to the Church in their great loss."
A telegram from the Right Rev. P. H. Eliot, Bishop of Buckingham to the churchwardens (Mr H P Cock and Mr F J Mills read: "Deepest sympathy with you all to-day."'
The Rev. J. Percy Taylor in a short reference, said there was a love and affection between deceased and himself which came from fourteen years of service performed humbly, and unostentatiously by a great man of God - far greater than any of them realized. The tragic happening naturally found them in grief and sorrow, but there was another side - he was asleep where pain and sorrow are no more. He was called to a Higher Service than was his privilege to perform here They did not think of the " Last Post" that day but of the " Reveille " on the morrow. Had he lived he would have lived in occasional or constant pain.
Although they mourn his passing they remembered the great work he did, and " we shall not fill his place". He was a great man, greatly beloved by all.
During the service in the Church a surpliced choir of members of both the Castlethorpe and Hanslope Churches led the singing of the hymns, " Lead kindly light " and " Abide with Me " ; also the Twenty-third Psalm. Miss Gregory was the organist. As the cortege, led by the choir, left the church for the graveside in the churchyard adjoining, the Nunc Dimittis was chanted.
The last rites were performed by the Vicar, and at the graveside the Rev. G. H. B. Brewin Methodist Circuit Superintendent, of Wolverhampton, offered prayers and added his tribute. He said he was grateful to have the opportunity of expressing the deep-felt affection and respect of the Methodist people of Castlethorpe and neighbourhood towards Mr. Fenn. The last public office he performed was in sharing with the speaker in the Methodist Church and by the graveside the funeral service to the late Mr. Edward Richardson - a kind of happening which occurred twice previous during his own three years ministry in his present Circuit. "Our people loved him," said the Methodist Superintendent," because he took such a human interest in their lives and made no distinctions of class or creed with them. To him they were all God's children whom he was called to serve, and he was a true pastor of the flock of God-a brother beloved."
The immediate mourners were: Dr. C. E. Fenn, Nayland. and the Rev. E. V. Fenn, M.A., Vicar of Lois Weeden (brothers), Miss A.M. Fenn Cheltenham (sister) Mrs A Clarke and Miss D Clarke (friends).
Clergy present were: Rev. E. A. Steer, R.D. (Vicar of Stony Stratford), Rev. A. H. Culmer (Holy Trinity, Ramsgate brother-in-law of Rev. J. P. Taylor, who assisted in the service), Rev. A. J. Bird (Loughton) and Rev. S. Hilton (Haversham).
The Parish Church was represented by its wardens, and also present were Mr. R. W Dickens, Mr. A. Smith, and Mr. G. Tebbey (representing St. James's Church, Hanslope). Mr. W. Beesley (sidesman at Castlethorpe Church), Mr. J. E. Whiting, J.P., Mrs. R. Mayes, and Mrs. W. Furness (representing Castlethorpe Hospital Week Committee), Mr. Owen Dixon, Wolverton, Miss Rainbow, Wolverton, Mr. L. Gunn (Castlethorpe Stationmaster), Mrs. R. A. Cooper, Hanslope, Nurse Everett, Miss Steer, Stony Stratford, and others.
The bearers were Messrs. A. Clarke. A. Meacham, J. Gobbey, and S. Waring.
A request by the deceased was that there should be no flowers. and the only two tributes that rested upon the coffin was a floral cross from members of the bereaved family and a tribute from Mrs. Rands and Mr. St. John Rands.
There were a few bunches of flowers from sympathizers.
On the North wall of the Chancel in Castlethorpe Church is a brass plaque dedicated to E.J. Fenn
To the Memory of
Edgar Julius Fenn
Priest in charge
1926 - 1942
His headstone (a cross) reads:
SACRED TO THE MEMORY OF
EDGAR JULIUS FENN. PRIEST
FOR SIXTEEN YEARS
DIED AUGUST 7th 1942. AGED 57
"UNTIL THE DAY BREAK AND THE SHADOWS FLEE"
(2:17 Song of Songs)
Ref: Dermot Elworthy 2013.
My dear Harry
All good wishes to you, Margot & the babe for Christmas & the New Year. I hope 1942 may prove a happier year for the world than the present one. I fear that I am rather late in sending my Christmas letter. Van tells me that he wrote to you some time ago. I shall send this by air mail, both for speed & also (I hope) for security. We are still all safe in this district & there have been no air raids, bar one which damaged some houses & killed three people at Wolverton (31/2 miles), nearly a year ago. Things don't look too healthy in Russia at the time of writing, but our RAF are doing marvellously & I hope will soon get the upper hand of the Luftwaffe.
To turn from these unpleasant topics, you have probably heard by this time that Charlie & Ella are contemplating taking up residence at Alston Court. The news came as a great surprise (& a pleasant one) to me. C. says it is likely to be a financial strain for them, but I hope they will be able to carry it through. I haven't heard when they are proposing to move in.
I have had 2 holidays this year. One in May, when I spent 10 days with Adria at Cheltenham. The weather was arctic & it rained most of the time. It was nice however, seeing A in her boarding house. I understand she has now taken up some form of War work in Cheltenham.
Dolly has left Cheltenham which didn't suit her rheumatism & has gone back to Bournemouth. My 2nd holiday was spent at Church Stretton in Shropshire, where I spent the inside of a week with an old Castlethorpe friend. Quite new country to me and very beautiful & I enjoyed it. Van & I made our annual exchange last month, & he came to Castlethorpe & I took up residence at Lois Weeden for the weekend. I found Mrs Legge, despite her 78 years, very brisk and active. I hope she doesn't get ill again this winter. It is a great worry for V if this happens. He really needs a younger woman to look after him, but Mrs L will not budge.
How is your leg, my boy? I have thought much of you & wondered if it was improving. I hope when I hear from you that the news will be better relating to the offending limb. My left leg has been misbehaving, of late, & I have had several tumbles. My bones must be pretty tough, as I have broken none & only a few bruises have resulted.
Mrs Cook (your hostess in 1938) has been ill, but has now recovered & is as lively & cheerful as ever. We have been having a series of functions (socials, whist drives, etc) for the Russian Red Cross Fund and have raised close on L30, a good effort for little Castlethorpe. I have had my photo of Margot & Edward mounted but not framed yet. It is rather difficult to get framing work done - Van has chosen the photos of the babe by himself & A.M.F. has the one of him on his Papa's knee.
With love & all good wishes to Margot & yourself & a kiss to E.L.F.
your affectionate buz
Edgar J. Fenn
My dear Harry & Margot
I am sorry that I have delayed so long in writing & thank you for the splendid photo of Edward which I have received quite safely. Tell Edward that Uncle Edgar is very pleased with his photo & hopes to see him in person one day in the future. I am not very good at seeing likenesses, but I think he features his papa, as we say colloquially. I am sending this letter by air mail in order that it may reach you quicker & also, I hope, safely. At the time of writing things are not looking any too bright out in the Far East, & the Japs seemed to be having everything all their own way. I very much hope that N.Z. may be spared their attentions & that you will be kept safe and sound.
We have just had a Warships Week in our district. The total aimed at was L200,000 & the result achieved, L169,000, of which Castlethorpe raised, L1132, which was pretty good for us, although last May we got L2809.
I saw Van in Northampton last week. He was looking very fit. Mrs Legg seems to have taken on a new lease of life & has kept very well all through the winter, & what a winter! Deep snow & piercing winds.
Castlethorpe is very flourishing. We have quite recently had our first War death on active service. A young R.A.F. man killed in an air crash.
I believe Charlie is going to stay with Van for a few days at Lois Weeden, when the move to Alston Court takes place. I don't know when that will be. Nancy will have to stay behind in Richmond, as she can't be spared from the farm where she works & where she is doing very well. I am wondering whether I shall have an opportunity of staying at A.C. this summer. Adria is still in the same lodgings at Cheltenham & leading rather an aimless existence, I fancy. It is a great pity she is not able to take up some occupation. I had a letter from her the other day with a piteous, heartrending request for some clothes coupons. I shall have to see what I can do about it. Dolly has left Cheltenham & is now in lodgings in Bournemouth. We are not by any means starving yet in England, although we have to scorn the lights & live the simple life. Mrs Clarke continues to look after me excellently, although it is no easy job to housekeep us these days what with ration books & points books & various other restrictions imposed by Lord Wootton, who is I think, doing his difficult & rather thankless job very well.
I hope, Harry, that your leg is no worse, & that you are able to get about.
I must close this scribble(?)
With love to you all & a kiss to Edward.
Yr affec/ate brother
Edgar J. Fenn
The Margaret Spencer Home
July 17th /42
My dear Harry
You may have received a recent letter from me written from the Hospital here, telling you that I had succeeded in breaking a femur & was incarcerated therein. I spent nine weeks (it seemed like nine months!) within its hospitable walls & was then transferred to this establishment which is about 1 mile outside Northampton. The house is a fine Georgian mansion & was formerly owned by Lord Spencer. On the death of Lady Spencer, it was handed over by the Earl to the Hospital, as a convalescent home in memory of his wife hence the name. Since the war, it has no longer been a Convalescent Home, plain & simple, but rather a sort of overflow of the hospital, & they now take bed and stretcher cases, as I was at first. I have now been here 3 weeks, & get up every day, or other, & in my right mind(?), & try a little walking exercise. This is proving a slow & somewhat painful pastime, as I potter along on my crutch, supported by a patient & a watchful nurse. The sister here tells me that I am definitely improving but the process as a slow one. Yesterday I went up to the Hospital and saw my doctor. He put me through my paces & seemed fairly satisfied at at (sic) the result. The verdict was that I am to come & see him again in 3 weeks time. So I was taken back here for another 3 weeks. It is my left leg that I have injured, so I have one good leg to get about on, & that is gradually getting stronger after my 2 months in bed. Talking about legs (& I have been talking a lot about mine), how it is my buzzer's affliction?, I hope the arthritis (or whatever the disease may be) is showing some signs of betterment & is not causing you too much discomfort. As in Hospital, so here, I look forward to Visiting Days. Van comes to see me every week & does my shopping or business that I need done in the town. It is nice for me that he is comparatively near (15 miles) & that I am able to see him so frequently.
Cousin Margaret Rands lives across the road from this Home, but we have not seen each other yet, as at present neither of us is able to make the journey. I am hoping to see her before I leave. Miss Turner, her companion, very kindly came to see me frequently while I was in Hospital. She tells me that Cousin Margaret is fairly well. Her eyesight is however very bad.
I hope Edward is going strong. No doubt, he is becoming a fine trusty lad.
With love to Margot & yourself & a kiss to Edward from his crippled old Uncle.
Your affec/ate buzzer
Edgar J Fenn
P.S. while in Hospital I had a visit from Charlie who was spending a week with Van. It was very nice to see him, I fancy they are having a fairly hectic time at Alston Court. Among other things I believe the hot water system has broken down. Adria writes to me fairly frequently from Cheltenham. She is doing Govt work there and is pretty fully occupied. In the last letter, she enquired tenderly after you & Margot. How often does she favour you with a letter?
A new Vicar of Nayland has been appointed - a Canon Wright & was instituted last week. He does not, I think hold the extreme views of the Father Sankey type.
I had a long letter from Eleanor Gray (one you may remember). She is now living in London. She was "blitzed" out of her flat in St Leonards & lost much of her property, but was, fortunately, in no way injured herself.
This has been some PS, to use a vulgar colloquialism (?spelling?).
Edgar's Will dated 25 Nov 1935 divided his estate equally between his brothers and half sister Adria Fenn. The Executor was Dr Charles E Fenn.
Church and Churchyard photos and information on Edgar courtesy of Dermot Elworthy 2013
1. Census: England, 5 Apr 1891, 1 Portland Tce The Green Richmond SRY. Edgar is recorded as a son aged 5 born Richmond SRY
2. Census: England, 31 Mar 1901, Grammar School St Mary Woodbridge SFK. Edgar is described as a boarder aged 15 a scholar/student born Richmond SRY