THE funeral of Michael Hopkins, of Creech St Michael, took place on December 30. He died on December 20, aged 79.

His family have lived and worked in Creech St Michael for 150 years, and he and his brother, Arthur, had continued the family wholesale butchers’ business from 1954 after Government decontrol.

St Michael’s Church was full with mourners. Michael was an old boy of Huish’s Grammar School and had been the first boy from the village to go to university (Bristol, to study engineering).

Business associates, friends and present and past staff from the firm swelled the congregation. Some of the business workforce had been with him over 40 years.

Michael was an astute businessman, working alongside the men for years. Then, after suffering a debilitating stroke in 2000 which left him severely disabled, he supported his dearly beloved nephew, Michael Cornwall, and factory manager Eric Marlborough in continuing the business.

Me was a selfeffacing man, and his kindness and support of his workforce and various charities is generally not known.

Michael was married to Josie, whom he met in 1957 and married in 1965.

It was a long courtship as Josie was running the wholesale oil and hardware business, Harvelene Oil Company (now Butler Oils) following the death of her foster-uncle.

They had eyes only for each other until the arrival of their beloved children, Edward and Sarah, to complete their family.

He was so proud of his children, Edward (wife Liezle) and Sarah (husband Nick), and his three granddaughters. He loved them all deeply.

He bore the last 8½ years of his life with dignity and great fortitude. Jose would like to thank friends and family who gave their time and support to Michael during that time, and to the staff of the Nuffield Hospital, and a very big thankyou to the carers of Way Ahead.

Jose and family are also appreciative of the support and lovely service conducted by the Rev Ian Aldersley (with Michael’s instruction), and at the crematorium.

They would also like to thank the funeral directors, Nigel Ford of Creech St Michael, for their very kind and sympathetic support.

Jose and family were overwhelmed by the many, many beautiful letters of condolence sent by so many kind people. Thankyou.

Donations, if wished, can be made to the Stroke Association in memory of Michael.