Passing of Captain, November 2023

On 8th November 2023 the Captain of the Parish of Malew, Roy Gelling, passed away. He was born Robert Henry Gelling at Knock e Loughan Farm, Santon which his father was farming. The Gelling family however had been farming Billown Farm, Malew for over 300 years. When Roy's grandfather retired in 1946 his father and the family moved into Billown which Roy farmed on his own account from 1967 until his retirement in 2017 at the age of 87. During the 1970's he served two terms as a Malew Parish Commissioner.

Roy was a keen supporter of the two agricultural shows and often exhibited. As a consequence he was recognised by being made a life member of both The Royal Manx Agricultural Society and The Southern Agricultural Society. From the inception of the Southern 100 Races in 1955 to 2020 he acted as a marshal, never missing a meeting of the Marshals Association of which he was also made a Life Member.

In his younger days Roy played football for Rushen and Colby and later was on the committee of Malew Football Club. He was a founder member of Malew Beagles Athletic Club. His great love was for snooker and played in the league never missing a league match in 65 years. In April 2020 he was presented with a lifetime achievement award at the Isle of Man Sports Awards Ceremony. He was President of the Isle of Man Snooker Association and Chairman of Malew Men's Club, out of which Malew Beagles was founded in 1961.

Roy was appointed Captain of the Parish of Malew in November 1995 at the age of 65 by Lieutenant Governor Sir Timothy Daunt in succession to Mrs Marion Taggart, who was the first lady in history to be appointed as a captain.

Roy's funeral took place at Malew Parish Church on 28th November at 2pm.

Snooker players formed a guard of honour and the Captains of the Parish attended with His Excellency the Lieutenant Governor. A solo, I'll Walk Beside You, was sung by Paul Costain who had been announced as the new Captain of the Parish of Rushen but who had not yet been sworn in.