We deeply regret to record the death of Mr. George Henry Skinner, a well-known tradesman and public man of Rushden, who passed away on Saturday at 13, Park-road, Rushden at the age of 76 years. The late Mr Skinner had been in failing health for some time past, and it was on these grounds that he recently resigned his membership of the Urban District Council and his office as Rector’s Warden.
The deceased gentleman’s family is one of the best known in Rushden, as his father, the late Mr George Skinner very many years ago founded the butcher’s business situated at the top of the hill which bears the family name, viz., Skinner’s-hill. The late Mr G H Skinner’s father nearly reached his hundredth year, predeceasing his son about two years ago. Right up to the time of his death he was Vicar’s Warden, his son, who has just passed away then succeeding to the office.
Mr G H Skinner was one of the oldest and best known tradesmen in the town, carrying on the butcher’s business in succession to his father for over forty years. About ten years ago he retired, since which time the business has been in the capable hands of his son, Mr Bert Skinner. The deceased leaves a widow (his second wife), four sons, and four daughters to mourn their loss. Two of the sons, viz., Messrs Wm and George Skinner, are abroad, the former being in Toronto and the latter in the United States. Mr Edward Skinner resides at Harrowden, where he has a farm, and Mr Bert Skinner, as above mentioned is in business at Rushden. Two daughters reside at Rushden, viz., Mrs Chas Claridge, and Mrs George Denton, junr., and the other daughters are Mrs John Rowlatt, of Wellingborough, and Mrs Ernest Walker, of Keyso.
The late Mr G H Skinner had been, with one exception, when he declined nomination, a member of the Rushden Urban District Council since its formation, and he was unanimously elected chairman of that body in 1909, having held the vice-chairmanship for the year immediately preceding. He was also a member of the old Local Board. Politically, he was a strong Conservative, and was one of the original directors of the Rushden Conservative Club.
As a young man he was an enthusiastic Volunteer, being a member of the Duke of Manchester’s Horse, and during that time he was successful in winning more than one trophy for swordsmanship and equestrianism. He was among the troops who lined the streets of the Metropolis at the marriage of the late King Edward VII, then Prince of Wales.
The funeral took place on Tuesday in the presence of many sympathisers, the last rites being attended by a large number of townspeople and public officials, including the deceased gentleman’s late colleagues of the Rushden Urban Council. The first portion of the burial service was conducted in St Mary’s Church by the Rector, and the hymn “Now the labourer’s task is o’er” was impressively sung, Mr J E Smith being at the organ. Subsequently the cortege preceded by the Urban Councillors and town officials, and representatives of the Rushden Conservative Club. There were also present at the graveside a number of the late Mr Skinner’s fellow tradesmen.
The coffin, of unpolished oak with brass fittings, bore the inscription:-
G H Skinner
Born October 30th 1841
Died May 4th 1918.
The mourners were: Mrs G H Skinner (widow), Mr and Mrs G Denton, junr., (son-in-law and daughter), Mr and Mrs C Claridge (son-in-law and daughter), Mr and Mrs J Rowlatt (son-in-law and daughter), Mr and Mrs E J Walker (son-in-law and daughter), Mr and Mrs H Skinner (son and daughter-in-law), Mr and Mrs E B Skinner (son and daughter-in-law), Mr J Rea (brother-in-law), Mrs J Lovell (sister), Mrs M Skinner (sister-in-law), Mr G H Skinner, of London (nephew), Mr Billie Skinner, R.A.F. (nephew), Mr J Harris (brother-in-law), Lieut. Jack Skinner (nephew), Mr Carl Skinner (nephew). Apart from the family tributes, there were no flowers, by request.