On 16 December, some twenty two members of Basingstoke Probus Club, including the current President and Vice President and wives joined Mike Jarvis’s wife, Jo, members of their family and friends and neighbours for a humanist service to celebrate his life. The Crematorium was packed, and several people had to stand to hear tributes from Jo, their children and grandchildren and reading of some of his favourite poems. Quiet music was played to provide an opportunity for reflection on all that Mike had achieved.
Mike had started his working life as a Rolls Royce apprentice, graduating to be an electronic engineer. We discovered that he had been engaged, among other projects, on the design of the “Black Box” which most aircraft now carry, and progressed to Project Management with Shell UK Exploration and had worked on their North Sea rigs. He became a trustee director of the Shell Pensions Trust and during the latter years was involved in pensioner activity. Some of these pensioners were present at the service.
Mike was revealed to us as a devoted family man, a versatile and multi skilled ‘do it yourself ‘practitioner and a prankster with a great sense of humour.
He was President in 2003/04 and had served as Secretary, Treasurer, Programme Secretary and Outings Organiser and when called on, helped the Lunch Steward in taking the money at Sandford Springs. Mike had been one of the members of the investment club that we had heard of from other Probus members and had always been a stalwart supporter of the monthly lunches and evening meetings of the Club.
Thursday 11 December was the Christmas Dinner held for the first time at our new lunch venue, the Test Valley Golf Club. Over forty people, members, wives and friends attended, slightly down on last year due to the illness of some regulars. President David Tivey requested a minute’s silence in respect of the recent passing of long time member, Mike Jarvis, before Grace was said by Geoff Twine. The room setting and food was excellent and the entertainment this year was provided by Quintessential, a wind quintet from the Basingstoke Symphony Orchestra.
Thanks are due, once again, to Alan and Liliane May for their splendid organisation of all the arrangements which meant that everyone received their correct menu selection. A raffle raised almost £100 for the club’s funds.
Apologies are offered for the varying condition of some photographs as some had to be taken with a phone camera. All the photographs can be seen in the MORE section in the drop down menu Photo Gallery.
Judith Charmer, the Fund Manager for The North Hampshire Medical Fund gave a presentation to the Probus Club of Basingstoke about the activities of this charity founded by the Earl of Carnarvon some 35 years ago which is probably unknown to most local people. Its purpose is to raise money to buy specialist equipment for Basingstoke hospital that the Health Service budget is unable to provide.
The equipment procured for Basingstoke has aided the improvements in on-site diagnostics, pain reduction and obviates the need for lengthy journeys to other centres for treatment. In many instances, equipment purchased by The Fund has been used for training medical staff in the most up to date procedures. Access to updated technology has also enabled the hospital to attract the best consultants. Their skill and expertise has helped to spread the hospital’s reputation as a centre of excellence and ensured a better quality of care for the thousands of people who use its services..
In the past two years 21 pieces of equipment have been funded and supplied to the North Hampshire Hospital. They include £450.000 for a new unit housing a Radiotherapy Planning CT scanner for targeting cancer with advanced technology and £10,500 for a Cardiotacograph machine for the hospital’s antenatal unit. This will save lives and reduce the incidence of complications, stress or harm to mother and baby. They have a current target of £130,000 for an Endobronchial Ultrasound which looks inside airways and allows samples to be taken from a lymph gland or tumour around the chest. Patients presently have to travel to Southampton or Oxford for these procedures with a waiting time of 4/5 weeks, and a tumour can double in size in that time.
The Fund is the only charity in the county dedicated to raising funds for equipment to help the hospital keep pace with advances in technology. However, technology is expensive, and NHS budgets cannot always stretch to pay for all the equipment that can help save lives, improve diagnosis and treatment or reduce pain. By continued support, The Medical Fund will keep the North Hampshire Hospital at the forefront of patient care.
The Probus Club of Basingstoke has also been in existence for as many years as The North Hampshire Medical Fund. A social club for retired professional and business managers it meets twice most months and more information can be seen on their web site http://www.probusbasingstoke.wordpress.com or call their secretary Paul Flint on 07770 886521 for an informal chat.