Peter S. FODEN

Sadly, Peter Foden, after fighting cancer for more than two years, died on 28th September 1995.

This is the greatest loss to the Study Circle in its 45 years of existence. Peter joined us, I think, in 1961 and was probably the youngest member who, at that time, we had. In sequence he was Bulletin Editor, Secretary Treasurer for many years, and President; he was a member of the Expert Committee from its inception. In addition he gave me great help in ‘general sales’, always being prepared to spend hours plating Mols stamps sent for sale, and not only those for sale but those of members starting on the plating activity.

He was a keen and most perceptive student of the stamps and postal history of the Congo. He wrote some of the best articles that have appeared in our Bulletin (one of which was the lead article in the Journal of the American Philatelic Society) sometimes on subjects not previously studied in depth. His powers of perception led to at least four major discoveries requiring major alterations to the combinations of plates of the Mols stamps, discoveries which should have been made years earlier by those who had the material to make them.

His father died while Peter was still at school and he was unable to go to University as had been intended. He always regretted this and, when approaching the age of 50, he decided to take a seven-year part-­time course in history with the Open University and he pursued this with enthusiasm even during his prolonged illness.

Because of his inability to leave the house he took examinations with a university invigilator in attendance at home. It was only in the last few weeks of his life that he lacked the strength to continue his studies.

Such was the quality of the friend we have lost.