Bedminster Down School

Ron Cleak

Born: 12 October 1924

Died: 24 November 2017

Ron Cleak passed away peacefully on 24/11/2017. Ron was a music teacher at the school from the opening of the school in September 1955 until he left to take up a promotion in Helston , Cornwall in 1960.

Ron was integral to the setting up of the annual Bedminster Down School Reunion when in 2006 he met with the current organiser, Peter Carter, at Bristol County Ground: the ground where his cricketing hero, Tom Graveney had played so many matches. The reunion meets every May and is now in its tenth year; it was originally for students who joined Bedminster Down in 1955 but now ex-students from other eras attend.

Ron is remembered with great affection by all who knew him and they speak highly of his dedication, love of music and contribution to the school. He was a respected pianist, conductor and composer both at school and local events. He formed the school choirs and orchestras throughout his time at the school and prepared students for concerts at such venues as the Colston Hall. Events remembered by some of his old students were: The Hallelujah Chorus at the 1959 Speech Day, his playing of Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata and the music he composed for ‘Merrie England’. He conducted his last concert at BDS on 26 July 1960.

His contribution to the school was summed up in the Bedian Magazine 1960 when the Headmaster wrote of Ron:

‘He made a prodigious contribution to the general life of the school and interested some quite unpromising people in music’.

The school sends its condolences and best wishes to all of Ron’s family, friends and ex-students.