Long-standing Guild member Nick Bond, who died early August at the age of 80, was a journalist and PR professional, and an enthusiastic supporter of the Guild and its activities, both in the Midlands where he lived, and nationally.
Nick spent many years on the Guild’s management Council, was Chairman from 2009 to 2011, and did two stints as an efficient and conscientious treasurer.
He attended several IFAJ overseas congresses with his wife Annabelle and in more recent years served as a trustee to the Guild’s Charitable Trust supporting members in times of need.
His charitable outlook was also reflected in his PR and communications work for the Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institution (RABI) and the Farming Community Network.
Stephen Howe, chairman of the Charitable Trust, said: “Nick was one of the most unassuming and helpful people I have been privileged to meet, which made him such a valued trustee, Guild member and previous Guild chairman at a time of change.
“Nick’s experience, wisdom and understanding of people proved to be invaluable as the BGAJ Charitable Trust developed over the years. Indeed, his contacts and knowledge acquired in the charity sector were often called upon to help the Trust find the best solutions for those seeking its help.”
Annabelle recalls Nick studying at Bishop Stortford College while they were engaged in the hope of passing land agent and auctioneer exams – and pursuading him to look for an alternative career after four unsuccessful attempts.
He nonetheless worked for Hobsons auctioneers for a time before finding a berth at the Maize Development Association in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, which brought him into contact with agricultural journalists who would become friends and colleagues.
He subsequently moved to the government’s Agricultural Training Board in Beckenham, organising skills training courses for farmers, and moved with the ATB to Warwickshire when it established new headquarters at the National Agricultural Centre, Stoneleigh. Redundancy followed and Nick took on the communications role at the RABI, an organisation he continued to support in a freelance capacity in retirement.
Annabelle said: “Nick loved working with farmers and everyone else in the agricultural community, and really enjoyed his involvement with the Guild. He also liked being organised and putting together the church newsletter. In fact, despite his illness, he was still sending emails from his iPad only an hour before he passed away.”
The Guild sends heartfelt condolences to all members of Nick’s family. Please send any personal tributes to Peter Hill.
Ruth Downing: A lovely gentleman, sad news.
Tim Scrivener: Sad news. RIP Nick.
Sarah Peacocke: I worked alongside Nick on two British Guild-hosted congresses and in many other areas of work. A true gentleman, great friend and talented and knowledgeable man.
Ian Damms: That is sad news. He was a lovely man and gentleman.
Charles Abel: Sad news – a generous and gentlemanly media professional.
Paul Lay: I’m so sad to hear about Nick. He was a warm, gentle, highly capable and professional colleague always keen to contribute to the Guild. We will miss him…
Cedric Porter: That is sad news. I always liked catching up with him at Guild and other events. As many others have said, a true gent.
Doreen Forsyth: So sad to hear about Nick. He made me feel so welcome when I became a member of the Guild. A lovely man.
Jane Craigie: What sad news. Nick thought the world of the Guild and always gave so much to the wider industry. He’ll be greatly missed.
Jon Riley: So sorry to hear about Nick. Echoing everyone else – he was always calm, kind and helpful whenever I spoke to him. A really humble gentle man.
Kevin Milner: So sorry to hear about Nick. I worked with him for the RABI; a nice man.
Rosie Carne: I am so very sorry and sad to hear Nick has died. I got to know him through the Fisons/Hydro/Yara awards when he was the Guild’s Awards Secretary, and through his work with RABI. He was such a lovely gentle man and I know devoted to Annabelle and his family.
Wendy Ryder: So very sad for all of us to lose such a dear colleague. We will all miss him very much and his words of wisdom.
Clive Rainbird: My recollections of Nick are much briefer than for many others but I am so sorry to learn of his recent passing. As a Trustee, Nick always represented a voice of considered wisdom together with a willingness to get personally involved whenever that was relevant and appropriate. He will be greatly missed by the Guild and the Charitable Trust.
Jeremy Coleclough: Nick always thought carefully about life, was trusted completely and a good man to have on your side. In truth a thoroughly decent human being. I had known him for over 50 years, and it is a great shame to hear he has gone.
Denis Chamberlain: A very thoughtful, caring and totally dependable man. His advice on things charitable were always to the point and helped our decision making enormously.
Tessa Bevin: Rest in peace dear Nicholas. Such a very lovely and sincere man who made me so welcome as a new Trustee. I am so sad to hear this news.
Gaina Morgan: Really sad news, he was such a lovely man.
Peter Hill: What sad news; I hadn’t realised Nick was so unwell and hope his passing was peaceful. I got to know him better through his time on the Guild Council and stints as Guild chairman 2009-2011 and treasurer – twice if I remember correctly – and awards secretary. He was very effective and efficient in all roles and, of course, charming with it, always expressing appreciation whenever a good job was done by any member of Council.
Mike Gooding: I learned much about Nick at his funeral service, as is so often the case when you attend a funeral, but it just confirmed what a community spirited family man he was. It was an appropriate setting and fitting service for such a gentle man.
Liz Snaith: It was absolutely beautiful and a most fitting and poignant tribute; echoing the fact Nick was such a gentleman, integrity to the core; hugely knowledgeable yet so unassuming; one of those people I feel privileged to have met and worked alongside.
Andrew Blake: I met Nick occasionally when working at British Farmer & Stockbreeder and then Farmers Weekly. He was always friendly and helpful if I needed information on a particular subject. RIP.
Jenni Green:I was so sorry to read about Nick Bond passing away. I had the great pleasure of working with Nick during my time as an RABI regional manager. He was always kind, welcoming and helpful and I always loved his wry smile. He was a great asset to the charity. Please pass on my condolences and good wishes to his family.