Cortege a fitting tribute to VW Beetle guru Howard

A cortege of VW Beetles proved a fitting tribute for a “much-loved” vintage vehicle guru.

Howard Cheese was a VW Beetle aficionado
Howard Cheese was a VW Beetle aficionado

Retired Ludlow Museum technician Howard Cheese died aged 70 on October 17 at the town’s community hospital, having been ill with a brain tumour.

A familiar figure in the town, Howard was well known for his love of all things mechanical and his VW Beetle collection.

Son of Cyril and Joan, and brother to Rosalyn, James and the late Alan, Howard was born in Greete at The Hoopits, and moved to Ludlow when the farm was sold. He was also church warden for 20 years at St James’ in Greete.

His sister Rosalyn said: “Many will remember Howard from his time working in Ludlow Museum as a technician and, in reality, amazing jack-of-all-trades, though his official title changed several times during almost 40 years of employment.

"Beginning with John Norton as his boss and mentor, Howard saw many changes and could have written a book on the pros and cons of each re-organisation!

"He enjoyed his job immensely and many colleagues became great friends as did visitors to the museum. For Howard, in whatever he did, nothing was too much trouble, and if he could help anyone, he would do his very best.

"The communications he received, from far and wide, during his illness are testament to the high regard in which he was held.

Journey

“Howard was involved in many local organisations, who will all miss his important contributions.

"His real passion, aside from local history, was anything mechanical, from tractors to steam engines to vintage and classic cars and, in particular, the VW Beetle, which he once described in a magazine article as ‘seeming to smile at you’.

"He was regarded as an absolute guru worldwide on the subject of the Mexican Brazilian Beetles. Thirty-five-years ago he set up the register of these vehicles and their owners. This is still going strong and will be maintained by enthusiasts and good friends.”

Howard’s famous Mexican sombrero, which he wore at VW events, featured in a striking floral arrangement to grace his coffin on his journey to Hereford Crematorium.

As a further tribute, four VW Beetles formed part of the cortege with another joining at Hereford and the owners travelled from Essex, Lincolnshire, Rutland and Knighton to support their friend.

A classic Saab 96 followed as well, whilst many friends and their vehicles, including vintage tractors, lined the route at various points.

Howard’s family wish to thank the Dinham Ward for taking care of him in his final days.

Anyone who like to donate to The Brain Tumour Charity in Howard’s memory can do so via justgiving.com/fundraising/Rosalyn-Anderson

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