Tribute to Major Duncan Bengough

26-09-2008: A MUCH-loved Sidbury man described as an example to us all for his continuous involvement in the village died last week after losing a long battle against illness.

26-09-2008: A MUCH-loved Sidbury man described as "an example to us all" for his continuous involvement in the village died last week after losing a long battle against illness.

Major Duncan Bengough died on Tuesday, September 16, and will be cremated at a private family service on Friday, September 26.

Well remembered as chairman and a key member of the Sidbury and Sidford Royal British Legion, Major Bengough played a prominent part in memorial services in the Sid Valley on Remembrance Day.

Friend Michael Robertson, 74, of Hillside Road, said: "We arrived in Sidbury in 1990 and straight away he made us feel so welcome. He was a dear friend. In his latter years he'd been so brave with his illness and was an absolute example to us all, not letting it get the better of him, carrying on his life and things he was involved with in the village, from the church to the village hall to the British Legion."

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In July Major Bengough hosted a Midsummer's Garden Party in the village which raised £2,400 for Sidmouth Hospiscare.

Major Bengough had been a member of elite military regiment The Black Watch, one of the British Army's most famous fighting units.

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After becoming a teacher at The King's School in Ottey St Mary, his habit of carrying books and marking around in an enormous baker's basket became legendary. Major Bengough also ran The King's Adventure Club and inspired many students to take up trekking, climbing and other outdoor pursuits. He also dedicated much of his time involving himself with Sidbury Primary school and helping its children with various activities.

Christine Drew, town councillor for the Sidbury ward, said: "He was a staunch conservative who always supported us and will be missed in the village. He did a lot for Sidbury."


I was a pupil at Kings School from 1973 to 1980. I was not the most pro-active scholar and so constantly came up against the wroth of Bengough! Once married with children I realised how much of himself he had put back in to education. He was relentless in his quest to get the best out of pupils (I know because I was one of the worst). A few years ago I decided to write to him and tell him how what an inspiration he had been to all those privileged enough to have been taught by him. He wrote a lovely letter back and remembered exactly who I was (I don't know if that is a good thing or not but testimony to the type of character he was, always paying attention to detail). Bless his heart. May he rest in peace, he deserves it. My sympathies to his wife and family.

Lynn Bultitude (nee Reading)

I felt I had to leave a message passing on my sympathies to the family and friend of Duncan. I was fortunate enough to have him as a teacher while attending Kings School O.S.M. and he was one of the most charismatic members of staff there, a real character who kept things 'interesting'

Mark Baker

I am very saddened to hear of his passing. He taught me religious education from 1987 to 1993 and was a great man. He had a very unusual but engaging teaching style that made things so much more interesting and was very dedicated to Mount House School and his work. My thoughts and sympathies to his family.

Alexis Tanner

Mr Bengough was a truly inspirational teacher in everything he did at The Kings School. He did more that educate. He lead from the front with humour, character and intelligence. I am sorry to hear of his departure, but am oh so glad he lived and I was present to share my life at great school that benefited so much from his life's experience. Not everyone appreciated his quirks and charms. That is their loss. I am sure I speak for very many children who attended the school from 1973 to 1980. He helped make us better individuals and a better team players!

Mark Searle

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