Feb 24, 1932 – Jan 19, 2018
It is with great sorrow that we announce the passing of John Hanson Battye on January 19, 2018 in Nanaimo BC after a courageous battle with dementia.
John was born in Batley on February 24, 1932, the son of the late Ernest Battye of Batley, Yorkshire and Florence Childe of South Elmsall, Yorkshire, England.
He emigrated in April 1957 to Canada and was educated at the University of Waterloo (MA History) and the University of Dalhousie (MEd). In 1971 John received a Commonwealth Scholarship to return to England for his Doctorate studies in Social History. His favourite postings were the Director of Continuing Education at St. Mary’s University in Nova Scotia, Principal of the Cumberland Community College in Saskatchewan and Director of Education for the Juan de Fuca Hospitals in Victoria, BC.
He co-founded the Crocus Theatre in /waybyrn, Saskatchewan and continued to support local community theatre groups after his move to Vancouver Island. In his retirement years John undertook researching his Yorkshire family history, publishing two editions titled The Battye Families of the Ancient Graveship of Holme.
John was an enthusiastic long distance cyclist successfully cycling from the Yukon to Newfoundland, the Appalachian Mountains (eastern North America), the west coast of the USA on numerous occasions and the top of Europe to the bottom (Nordkapp, Norway to the Peloponnese Peninsula, Greece).
He also enjoyed long distance trekking with his wife, walking the Camino de Santiago in France, Spain and Portugal. His favourites were those in the UK such as the Coast-to-Coast walk, the Pennine Way and the South West Coast Path in Cornwall. None of these were easy but John loved a challenge and was happiest when out in nature.
He is survived by his wife Jeannette and his children John, Frances, Mark, Christina, Andy, Rachel, Catherine, Sean, Bryn, Scott, step-daughter Michelle and their families.
He is also survived by his beloved brothers Rockley (Anne) and George.
In the last year of his life John was cared for at Eden Gardens where the care was exceptional. We are so grateful to the staff who brought much grace and joy to John at this stage of his life. We would encourage donations to the Canadian Dementia Action Network: website cdan.ca.
At John’s request there will be no service. His remains will be returned to the Lake District in the north of England, a mountainous place that brought much joy to John throughout his life.