Family, later life & death
In July 1938 Nigel married Audrey Grace Hudson (b. 29 June 1901), the daughter of a Leominster dentist. She trained as a kindergarten teacher in Bedford and had run her own school in Leominster before her marriage. She and Nigel immediately moved to Craven Arms, the end of the Bishop’s Castle line.
Nigel was fifty when he married. He had by then forsaken some of his more adventurous pastimes and had developed a serious interest in growing apples, pears, gooseberries and raspberries. He became quite an authority on nurturing these fruits. He was friendly with Shrewsbury based Percy Thrower, a well-known broadcaster and writer on gardening matters who had been a Shrewsbury parks superintendent and who founded a garden centre in the city. (Wistanstow is famous for its Woods brewery and they named a beer in honour of Percy Thrower and his spectacular fuchsia garden at the Shrewsbury Flower Show; the beer was called ‘Fuchsia Perfect’!) Nigel himself wrote articles on fruit growing and related subjects in publications such as The Shropshire Magazine.
Nigel died on Saturday, 5 May 1973 and Audrey on Tuesday, 15 January 1980.
They are survived by a son but tragically his son, Benjamin John Owen, who was born on 2 May 1971, was found to have leukaemia and died at the age of eighteen on 20 July 1989. Benjamin was a Bishop’s Chorister and a keen club cyclist. Nigel and Audrey also lost children; a year after their son's birth Audrey gave birth to twin daughters, Daphne and Diana, on 19 February 1940 but both survived only two days.
Nigel and Audrey's daughter was widowed in 2008. I believe her husband, Michael John Bladen, was born in 1934 [Tenbury 1934, 4th qt]. There are living descendants.