Funeral of Albert Mayle, Past Beadle, 1996 - 2005

Tuesday 1st August 2017

Wren’s Chapel, Royal Hospital Chelsea

The Learned Clerk and I attended the funeral of Albert Mayle, Beadle of our Company from 1996 to 2005. According to our records, when Bert joined the Company, he was Beadle to the Fan Makers and to the Ward of Walbrook. It is recorded in the Court Minutes that he had agreed to act as Beadle for a year and then stayed 9 years, retiring in 2005 when he would have been in his 70s. Bert had been an In-Pensioner at the Royal Hospital Chelsea for the past two years, having served his time in the Fusiliers of the London Regiment. It was my first visit to the Royal Hospital Chelsea and I am grateful to Alan Beggs for giving me on a brief tour of a remarkable institution. Instigated by Charles II, the Royal Chelsea Hospital was built by Sir Christopher Wren and completed in 1692.

The Wren Chapel was packed with family, friends, Chelsea pensioners in their scarlet uniforms and representatives from the Fan Makers and the City. It was a fitting service for someone who had served his country in Egypt in the post war years and had a long and varied life. After the service, the funeral cortege exited through the main gates, to the lament of a piper, while pensioners and members of the congregation formed a guard of honour. We then retired to the RHC hostelry where we spent a pleasant hour or so with friends of Alan and Sandra enjoying a very agreeable Chelsea Pensioner IPA.