Tributes paid to former Aylsham Show president
PUBLISHED: 11:37 18 March 2020 | UPDATED: 11:37 18 March 2020
Tributes have been paid to former president of the Aylsham Show and “true gentleman” Ben Rust who died at home, aged 99.
His beloved wife Lynette died on March 7, 2017 and Mr Rust, an Aylsham miller, died almost three years later on March 8.
His oldest daughter, Joanna Fredenburgh, said: “We joked that he was late for his first date with Lynette and now late for his final date. We will miss his wonderful spirit dreadfully and so will the town and church of Aylsham.”
She added: “He had great affection for Aylsham. He devoted himself to helping the community in many ways, as an Aylsham High School governor, speaker-finder for the Rotary Club, Chairman of the Parish Council, president of the Aylsham Show and a churchwarden.
“From the many condolence cards, he was known in the community as a true gentleman.”
She added: “But he was mostly a family man, full of laughter and fun, always there in the background when needed, always thoughtful and supportive and endlessly patient. He loved get-togethers with his family, friends and neighbours, Christmas games and Easter egg hunts.”
Born in December 1920, the son of Robert Rust, who ran the family business in milling in Aylsham, he began working there after he left school.
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When war broke out in 1939, he was not called up because milling was a protected occupation. However, wishing to do his duty, he signed up with the RAF, and trained young men to fly Spitfires and Hurricanes in Canada.
After the war he returned to Aylsham and continued his milling career. He met Lynette Hirst at a tennis club dance at Aylsham town hall and they were married six months later.
The mill on the River Bure was a large feature of family life with swimming in the pool, rowing and canoeing, climbing trees and picnics on the river banks. He leaves three daughters, Joanna, Sara and Mary-Jayne and four grandchildren.
A private cremation service will follow and details of a memorial service will be announced later.