Lucy Hutchinson
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Lucy Hutchinson - Eskdale, The Lake District, 1979

My late husband Keith and I worked at Outward Bound Eskdale for 27 and 21 years, respectively. Keith worked on the Maintenance, eventually becoming Head of the department. I did the expedition food for 15 years; when that became obsolete I moved into the kitchen/dining area for three years and then reached the dizzy heights of House Manager. Neither of us had broken service and indeed Simon Waring was the only person who had worked for Outward Bound longer than Keith when he left.

We lived in Gatehouse Lodge, a tied cottage situated in the Stable Yard at Eskdale. The kitchen window was overlooked by the dormitory blocks. The students would invariably return from expedition tired, hungry and very often wet. It was amazing to see the transformation after a shower and a visit to the dining room. Over the years, many students returned, some after a considerable amount of time and without exception they said that it had been the best time of their life.

Our two sons, Lee and Scott, both did junior courses at Ullswater when Lester Davies was Warden, then Scott did a standard course at Aberdovey. His ultimate Outward Bound experience was a course that sailed around the Scottish Islands from Loch Eil. As a family, we 'lived the dream'. Over the 27 years, the organisation went through many changes. We had the best of all the times; we met some incredible people and some strong friendships were formed. Outward Bound was indeed our extended family.

After a long hard battle with cancer, Keith died in January this year. His memorial held at Eskdale on June 6th was attended by at least 150 people with Outward Bound connections"�a fitting tribute.