Bill Mitchell: A life well lived
When daughter Emma Oliver put a post on Facebook telling us that her father Bill Mitchell had passed away in June this year, more than 500 people reacted to the post. He had had so many connections within the community.
Bill was born in Alnwick and was educated at the Duke School. On leaving he trained as a mining engineer with a view to becoming a colliery manager, but then tuned his hand to teaching. He met Jean, his wife of 65 years, when she attended Alnwick Training College in the 60s.
The couple moved to Amble when he started teaching at Amble Secondary Modern School, where he specialised in mathematics and general subjects. When the system changed, he joined the staff of Coquet High School and he served as deputy head until he retired in 1987. During school holidays Bill, Jean, and children Mark and Emma enjoyed caravanning in Scotland and holidays abroad.
Bill liked to be busy and supported his local community.in a wide variety of roles. He was a member of Amble Urban District Council, and Amble Town Council, serving as Mayor on two occasions. He served on Alnwick District Council from 1973 and was chairman for two years from 1984. During this time he negotiated with the EU in Brussels for the building of Amble Marina. When he travelled to secure the funding, he took with him, as a gift, a red telephone box. This was installed in Voerde, and he rang his wife from it.
He became a Justice of the Peace in 1982 and chairman of the bench from 2001-2004. In 1987 he became an Alderman of Alnwick, and in 2009 a Northumberland Alderman.
Bill’s wife Jean told us, “After retiring he said he would not want to live anywhere but Amble.”
Bill was 86 years old but sadly had not enjoyed good health in recent years. Now he is at peace.