A former president of the Probus Club of Penrith and District and a Freemason for 50 years has died aged 83.
Mike Digby, of Penrith, was a pre-war baby born in North London in 1937. Good luck was on his side early in life, as the family moved to Wembley after his birth and soon after this their former home was struck by a bomb.
Luck continued to be with him when his school was hit by a doodle bug bomb, destroying it, but fortunately this attack took place at night and nobody was injured.
At the age of 13, he attended a technical college for engineering, which set the path for his career. He went on to start work at GEC, making medical equipment and completed his apprenticeship as a planning and estimating engineer.
At the age of 21, Queen and country called and he joined the Royal Signals for national service and spent much of his time in Germany, excelling at sports, including track and field events and rugby.
After leaving the army he returned to engineering and got a job as an assistant production manager.
In 1965, Mike’s luck was with him again when he met his wife-to-be, Angela, who was a nurse at Stanmore Orthopaedic Hospital.
In 1972, the family, which had grown to include Vivian, Susan and twin boys Pete and Colin, moved to St Neots, in Cambridgeshire.
Mike then moved into engineering management and senior roles which meant travel to America to visit head offices. I
n the early 1990s, after 24 years of annual holidays to Swinside, in Cumbria, Mike and Angela, upon retirement, moved permanently to Penrith and both soon settled into local life and clubs, taking on active roles.
Mike was a keen Freemason and, in 2020, was presented with a 50-year certificate from the Metropolitan Grand Master, in recognition for his service.
His other passion was Probus Club of Penrith and District where he had many friends and enjoyed good times.
He held many positions including president, chairman and treasurer over the years and always had time to help others.
Rob Matthews, of Penruddock, who is the present chairman of the Probus Club of Penrith and District, paid tribute to Mike, saying he would be remembered as a very good supporter of the club, having it very much at heart, and always being full of good advice. He will be very much missed, said Mr Matthews.
In the last few years he suffered failing health and then COVID-19 struck and took him to the “Grand Lodge above” very suddenly on Wednesday, 27th January.
He is survived by his adored wife, Angela and his much-loved four children as well as many grandchildren.
This week, his family added to the tributes, saying he had a good life and one that had a positive impact on those he knew and spent time with.
The family asks that any donations, instead of flowers, go to the Salvation Army.
To make a donation or join in a celebration of Mike’s life, email email@example.com