Getting Ready For Heaven


I cannot take credit for this lovely drawing. It is an illustration by Pam Copestake and is here because I would like to share something with you.

After a storytelling a while ago, I published a drawing of Smudge the Mouse by the rather talented little Georgia Lindsay (see

Tameside Libraries).

Her Grandad, Peter, recently made contact with me and it turns out that Georgia has quite an artistic family. These drawings were done by Peter's sister in law, Pam, for her husband, David Copestake's funeral. He too was an artist, hence the idea.

I was so taken with the drawings that I thought you might like to see them too. She is now in her 70's and lives in Aintree outside Liverpool. She has never been a professional illustrator but Peter tells me she's just won a local art competition on the theme of Liverpool as City of Culture.

Well done Pam, and thank you for letting me share your lovely drawings with others.

27 comments:

granny grimble said...

Thank you for sharing those great drawings. What a lovely unique idea for Pam to do those sketches for her husband David's funeral. I hope he 'saw' them.

Anonymous said...

Is this the David Copestake
who was an art teacher at Hillfoot
Hey High School in the sixties and
seventies ?

Peter Copestake said...

yes David Copestake was indeed the art teacher/ head of dept and eventually deputy Head at Hillfoot Hey. His subjects were: Art / History of Art / Pottery/ Architecture

Peter Copestake (brother)

John Kirkwood said...

David Copestake was my inspirational art teacher at Hillfoot Hey High School, Liverpool. I have a lovely vase that he gave me when I was doing A-level Art (Incl. History of Architecture). Today's Guardian supplement on that subject prompted me to search for his name. Some teachers make a real difference and David was one of them.

John Kirkwood

Lynne Chapman said...

What a lovely comment - I can imagine it would make David feel really chuffed to know that.

I know what you mean though - I had an Art History teacher like that when I did my foundation course: Clive Ashwin. He lit fires in previously damp corners of my imagination!

Anonymous said...

I was in the very first intake of first formers at Hillfoot in Sept of 1956 and Mr. Copestake was one of the original 6 or 7 teachers. As well as Art, he also taught Music for the first year. Always a very kind and sympathetic teacher, one of the best. Although I was totally useless at Art, he always found something positive in my efforts.
Sorry to just now hear of his passing as I came across this site.

Eddie Bellion, Hillfoot 1956-62.

Lynne the Pencil said...

It's sad that he has gone, but I'm glad you got to learn of it at least. The post has been up since 2008, so it was a while ago. He sounds like he was a pretty special person.

Anonymous said...

Mr Copestake was my form master in my first year at hillfoot 1958-59 (1C for Copestake)and my art master. He was one of my favourite masters. He was also a tolerant master, warm, friendly! I remember him as slimmer and taller than the illustration but with a moustache. A great bloke.
R Coventry Hillfoot 1958-65

Lynne the Pencil said...

He is clearly remembered fondly by many people. I wish I'd had the chance to meet him myself.

Anonymous said...

It is amazing how you retain the memory of a good teacher after all these years
David Birch, Hillfoot 1959 - 1966

Anonymous said...

I have fond memories of Mr Copestake from my time at Hillfoot ( 1969-76 ) . Although I attended his art lessons for only the first two years ( then on into 3S ), I can remember many good times . He wasn't sarcastic , pompous or officious ( several were ..... ), but had a 100% genuine interest in the subject , students and Hillfoot. If he saw me walking along School Lane in the morning , he would stop to give me a lift . Only he and Dennis Howard would do that ! He had a Leyland Allegro ; I think the model with the square steeting wheel ? ) and it was quite "flash" in its day.
Easter 1975 he took a party of 20 of us to ChristChurch College Oxford to visit the facility and meet the Don who was a Hillfoot old-boy and friend of Dennis Howard's ( chemistry teacher ).
We also experienced superb Art History lectures from David as a part of General Studies A level.
I remember in my first year ( 1970 ) he asked me to polish the school awards cup , and handed me a can of paste and a cloth. After tea-break he came to find me , and his eyes nearly popped-out-of-his-head whan he saw I'd rubbed a lot of the very thin silver plate to the brass ! After a couple of seconds of our combined shock , we cracked out laughing ; priceless moment ! It was metal paste , not silver paste , and I wasn't paying enough attention to the task in hand .
He would have made a superb Head Master , but Alec Holden wanted an outsider to succeed upon his retirement . AH ( I knew him for years .... ) said that an internally promoted Head never gets respect form others . He was right , but that was cold comfort for DC .

Neil in Australia

Susan Leighton said...

Wow, just found this. I am David's daughter and I recognise so much of what has been said about my Dad in the many posts here. He genuinely loved his time at Hillfoot, especially the years up until the late 70s. I'll show these to my mum in a few weeks when she comes visiting. Thank you to those of you who have said such wonderful things about such a wonderful man. :-)

Anonymous said...

I was at Hillfoot 1965 to 1972 and had Mr Copestake in the earlier years for Art. He truly was a gent and I recall one lesson laughing out loud at a joke and he asked me to stand outside the art room which was right next door to the Teachers room. Well he forgot about me and it was a double lesson so I stood there for about an hour and a half with the Head Mr Pomfret scowling at me as he went in and out ( Good job it was not his predecessor as would have got six of the best). At the end of the lesson Mr Copestake realised he had forgotten about me and then spent ten minutes apologising to me. Fond memory of the art room and him.

Steve

Lynne the Pencil said...

How lovely that so many people who knew David as a teacher seem to have found this post and shared their fond memories of him.

Thank you for taking the time to leave your comments. I'm sure he would have been chuffed to bits.

Son of St Domingo said...

Would Peter be the Peter Copestake who worked for Girobank/A&L?

Lynne the Pencil said...

I don't know, I'm afraid. I only know the information in the little article, as I never knew the family personally. Could be...

Son of St Domingo said...

Lynne - thanks - hopefully one of the family picks this up and lets me know.

Kieran McGrath said...

A truly inspirational teacher who took the time to be interested in each of his students. A wonderful man with fond memories of time long gone.

Kieran McGrath
1970 - 1975

Anonymous said...

Great teacher Mr.Copestake . I was there 64-69. Had him for 5 years as I took Art O level. Abiding memory is of him during Teacher v 6th- formers annual footy match out on the right-wing snatching quick drags on a 'woody' when the ball was the other end of the pitch.
Took a genuine interest in his pupils.

Committee Member said...

Hi All, I still fondly remember Mr Copestake. I did art at A level and often think about him and remember what a kind, tolerant, supportive and inspirational man he was. I feel so sorry that I didn't take time out to tell him myself. What a lovely person.

Anonymous said...

I'm pretty sure that DC designed the school badge, I don't suppose that it's possible that there's any artwork still extant.

Anonymous said...

I was there from 1960 to 1967 and remember Mr Copestake well. I was a timid boy then, and in my first year, one end of lunchtime, he surprised me as I tried to wipe the table with a cloth hidden inside a beaker. Not a great crime but in those days you seemed to be caned for any misdemeanor. I was literally terrified. Mr Copestake saw me trembling. I have never forgotten his words: "Poor little mite" and he sent me off. In our next art lesson he asked if I was still frightened of him. Such a small act of human kindness which has stayed with me all my life. I wish I could thank him.

Stephen Woodier said...

I remember accidentally tipping some paint powder all over him in class. It was the only time I ever heard him raise his voice.......or have steam coming out of his ears.

Steve Rhenius said...

I have fond memories of Dave Copestake and his art classes. I was at the school from 1963 - 1969. His classes were inspiring and he was never sarcastic and always encouraging. Glad to hear he went on to be deputy head - I'm sure he'd be perfect for the role.

Anonymous said...

I liked and respected him a lot though I was no artist and didn't take Art O Level.
Many were totally unforgettable: Forbes, Lynan, Fox, Warwick, Jordan, Leyland.
Few villains. Holden was the nastiest.
Talking 58-64 here.
Non nobisssss, Domine!

steven french said...

I attended from 82-87, the final years. I loved that school, some of my best memories ever. I recall breaking down in class cause i thought my nan was going to die and i'd have nobody. Dave Copestake took me into his cosy little office and we had a long chat. He told me not to worry, my nan would live a long life (he was right) he was the only person i ever spoke to about that....enduring memory, lovely man. Veritas Vincit!

Mike Stevenson said...

David Copestake was my art teacher at Hillfoot Hey and an inspiration for most of my life afterwards. He directed me towards Liverpool College of Art and my subsequent career as an art teacher, Local Authority Art Adviser and finally as an Ofsted Inspector. Without David's sympathy and drive to succeed, none of that would have come to pass, and he has my gratitude for taking some raw talent and knowing how to shape and nurture it. mikestevensonart.co.uk