Barrie Capener [Heath 1948–1956]

Barrie was born on , the middle of three sons Geoffrey, Barrie and Roger, to Gladys and Lewis Capener who had a wholesale bakery business on Hare Street, Halifax. He went to Queens Road junior school and then on to Heath Grammar where his love of sport, in particular Fives, and his skills in Rugby landed him on the school teams.

He served his National Service in the RAF at Church Fenton between 1956–58 where he was trained as an instruments technician on Hawker Hunter aircraft. His discharge papers remark that he was ‘an extremely capable man of exemplary conduct,’ qualities he retained all his life.

Barrie went on to complete his teacher training at Borough Road college in London before coming back to Halifax for his first teaching post at Ovenden High School, teaching history. It wasn’t long before he met Eleanor, whom he married in 1963.

Barrie’s teaching career then moved to Clare Hall School where he became Head of History and the school library! Helen and David remember many days during the summer holidays sorting through old books in the library and then going to book wholesellers to purchase new stock. Being the child of a teacher was always an education!

Barrie loved his cars; he kept a photograph of every car that he had — all 20 of them! He loved caravanning and driving the quiet, open roads of France. The first trip to France caravanning was in 1967 with Eleanor and a young Helen. They had trouble finding a campsite that had space and so ended up staying on a French ‘teachers’ campsite. Fortunately, Barrie’s organisational skills meant future holidays were better planned and the long summer holidays were spent in many a campsite all over Europe. He loved his holidays in the sunshine but could never quite leave the ‘history teacher’ behind! When retired Barrie and Eleanor joined the local Antiquarian Society and went on escorted archaeological tours of Italy and Turkey to see the likes of Pompeii, Vesuvius and Ephesus.

Barrie loved walking and spent many happy times on the moors above Haworth towards ‘Top Withins’ or long weekends walking in the Lake District with his family. He also enjoyed listening to music. His musical tastes were wide ranging from classical to stage and film, from Cats and Rogers and Hammerstein to The Carpenters, Abba, Barry Manilow and Songs of Praise.

Barrie’s faith has always been a large part of his life since becoming a Christian in his early twenties. Barrie and Eleanor were married at Elim Church in Halifax. They were active members there throughout all Helen and David’s childhood; Eleanor taught Sunday school and Barrie as a deacon for many years. In their later years they attended the Parish Church, now Halifax Minster, where they became actively involved on Sundays and Fridays helping with readings, serving the emblems and praying.

Barrie was a quiet man; kind, generous and always supportive of his family. He was Eleanor’s ‘rock’ and a constant in Helen and David’s lives. When Nigel, Fran, Daniel and Alex entered his life, he took them into his heart and loved them.

A husband, dad and grandad. He’s always loved, never forgotten.

Helen French, Barrie Capener's daughter, and David Capener, Barrie Capener’s son