Sad news last night transformed a relaxing evening into an unexpected wake...
Mark Brummell - a rather special cyclist, died when his bike was hit by a car at Ipley Cross on the Beaulieu Road on the edge of the New Forest. Mark regularly went for afternoon bike rides in the forest, so its some consolation to think that he would have had an enjoyable afternoon outing before his untimely death.
The accident happened at about 18.15 on Monday 28th May 2012. The accident has been widely reported in the local media. The piece in the Southampton Daily Echo from May 30th includes a tribute from local cyclists. The photo above shows Mark in an uncharacteristically 'smart cyclist' mode was a rickshaw driver when he took us to our wedding in 2004.
Mark was well known and liked amongst the local cycling community, a long standing member of the Southampton Cycling Campaign. He was previously a popular, conscientious and well respected academic in the Physics Department at the University of Southampton. About 10 years ago he took early retirement from the University because of ill health.
After that time he dedicated himself to all things bikes which included maintaining, re-building and restoring old cycles working from his home in Shirley. This included some project work refurbishing bikes for people without other means of transport. If you were lucky enough to have your bike handled by Mark it meant that you had passed his (rather opaque) admission interview, and your steed(s) details would be added to his database for future reference.
His work was always meticulous, and the itemised account which you received after a detailed explanation of how and where all the parts had been sourced would inevitably be written on the back of an envelope. Mark's afternoon rides were a regular feature and essential part of his working life and would be followed by evening relaxation in the Wellington Arms, in Freemantle where he could replace some well used calories with appropriate quantities of real ale.
I knew Mark as a friend and very reliable bike mechanic/engineer who was always ready to sort out a problem, and whose rigorous physics background was just the thing when setting up a chain set or building or truing a wheel. He advised me, and cared for many of my bikes over the years, and everyone who I introduced to him agreed with me that he was a lovely and rather special person. One thing is for certain, among his many friends he will be most sorely missed.
Mark Brummell, cyclist, physicist 1959-2012. His is survived by an elderly mother and a brother,