Cheltenham Cemetery - 2nd July 2006
Adapted from the article in AfterMath # 9 reporting the Summer 2006 meet up in Cheltenham on the anniversary of the death of Brian Jones.
by Trevor Hobley
If one were to take even a cursory glance at Brian Jones’ death certificate, one couldn’t fail to see that the date of his death is clearly stated as, ‘Second July 1969’. Brian died before midnight on the 2nd July 1969 and this piece of information is correctly recorded on his death certificate, This fact ranks high on the list of incorrect myths that have been perpetuated over the years by many so called ‘biographers’ and ‘experienced’ journalists.
Regarding his gravestone, even Brian’s parents got it wrong. Could they be bothered taking a look at their son’s death certificate when ordering their son’s headstone? Did Mr and Mrs Jones give a fig about their ‘waywood’ son. I think the lack of sentiment in their unemotional epitaph says it all, take a look at the inscription on the photograph below and form your own opinion.
Even the Cheltenham fan club run by David Reynolds perpetuate the myth. Reported in the Cheltenham Echo on the 5th July we read that: “It was the end of an era when five solemn souls stood, heads bowed, at the grave of Brian Jones. Fan club members left flowers and tributes at the rock-star’s grave in Cheltenham Crematorium on the 37th anniversary of his death on July 3. It was to be their last visit in his honour”, a story which was picked up by the national tabloid News Of The World (left) who duly reporting the story to the nation on the 9thJuly, mistakenly quoting the anniversary of Brian's death as July 3rd!
BJFC members however turned up at midday on the 2nd July, a beautiful hot sunny Sunday and placed their flowers and tributes in remembrance of Cheltenham’s oft forgotten son. One concern over the previous few months was the whereabouts of Pat Andrews, much chatter on the internet had shown peoples worry over Pat and I’d received numerous phone calls and e-mails asking after Pat’s health, but I too was in the dark not being able to contact her. But, as everybody stood talking, up pulled a car and out Pat jumped, bright and bubbly and looking great. She greeted everyone as she had done over the past years at these get-togethers and amid the chatter explained how ill and out of contact she had been over the last few months. The talk about Brian, the fan club and general chat went on for a couple of hours and then, 'we all went down the pub’.
Dick Hattrell had once again organised a private area for us in the local Prestbury Kings Arms where, supping pints, drinking coffee and eating lunch we whiled the afternoon away; good friends enjoying each others company, chatting about everything including the guy we had all come to remember, Brian Jones.
A great way to spend a summer’s afternoon and everybody went away feeling good and promising to meet up again in February.