In the 1920’s a young lad, aged 15, of the name Gordon Maxwell Bowie knocked on the door of F.H. Brundle looking for a job. Frederick Henry Brundle told him he was too young to work and asked him to come back when he was 16 years old. On his 16th birthday, Mr Bowie reappeared at the premises, asking for a job, which at that time was based in the city of London, on the current site of the Barbican. My great, great-grandfather gave Mr Bowie a job, and he remained working in the business for the rest of his career. He eventually became our accountant.
He worked with all 5 generations of Brundle’s albeit I was still at school, and only came in the office for the odd day, during the school holidays. He was a huge influence on my father. Mr Bowie guided and mentored my father on how to run a business and the importance of margins. He was held in very high regard amongst generations of Brundle’s for his sound business advice and astute mind.
The business probably wouldn’t be here today if it wasn’t for Mr Bowie. Because my father, in the 1960’s, became disillusioned with working in the family business and left for alternative employment. After a couple of years, Mr Bowie eventually convinced my father to return, and my father continued to work in the business until the age of 78.
The reason for my story is that a few days ago, I received a lovely letter from the daughter of Mr Bowie, enclosed was the order of service for the funeral of Frederick Henry Brundle from 1938, the order of service from my grandparents’ wedding from 1938, and the order of service from my parents’ wedding in 1970.
I have written back to Mr Bowie’s daughter, thanking her, and reiterating what a major part her father played in our family business. He was a lovely man.