Local author, Marion Cicely Bone: 1930 - 2018 Marion Bone, author of the 1988 book, The Story of Hook in Kingston", passed away at the age of 88, after a brief illness on December 21, 2018. She was a lifelong resident of Hook, champion of local causes, family and local historian, a pioneer of local interest books, and active member of the Parish Church at St. Paul's Hook.
Marion was born at home in a house on the Hook Road in 1930 to mother Emily and father Richard Williams. She lived her married life and later years in a nearby house, also on the Hook Road. Save for a brief spell as an evacuee, to Barrow in Furness during WWII, she spent her entire life in Hook and was devoted to its history and activities in the community. She attended Surbiton High School and performed with distinction in the high school certificates of the day. After leaving school she served for a number of years in her father's department in His Majesty's Stationery Office. It was as a young adult that she first became involved with the local church at St. Paul's, first in the Players amateur dramatic group but later in a variety of official roles. It was at the Players that she met her soon to be husband George Bone. They were married in 1964 at St. Paul's, a marriage that lasted 46 years till George's death in 2011. After the birth of her son Richard, in 1967, she retired from the civil service and devoted herself full time to a number of local causes as well as her contributions to the church.
At St. Paul's Church, Marion was an active member of the Wives' Fellowship and later the Mother's Union. She served as Secretary to the Parochial Church Council, organized a band of volunteers to clear decades of undergrowth in the churchyard, supported her husband in his role as church warden in the 1980's, and campaigned for the introduction of modern language orders of service. But her most long lasting contribution to the church was to have spearheaded a program to curate and preserve the parish archives in the late 1980s. She meticulously organized and indexed the church's records and made sure that they were preserved for posterity by making them available to the Surrey Record Office. Marion's passion was history in all its strands. She single-mindedly researched her family history beginning in the 1970's at a time when computerization of such records was long in the future. She did the work longhand and in person, visiting church and county record offices all over the country, painstakingly cataloging certificates of birth, death, and marriage, and carefully reconstructing a family tree from raw information. She was not alone in this endeavor: she discovered long lost relatives of her own who were engaged in their own similar quests, and met with kindred spirit through the West Surrey Family History Society. But Marion Bone will be best known an remembered for her 1988 book, "The Story of Hook in Kingston", which chronicled the land in and around the parish of Hook based on records going back as far as the Norman invasion. The book was not the first work of local history in the Kingston area, but coming as it did at the emergence of home-based computer technology (it was typeset at home on an Amstrad personal computer), it inspired a mini industry of such books, many of which were anthologies of photographs, rather than the detailed written historical narrative that she so enjoyed. There are plans to publish an updated version of "Hook in Kingston" in the coming year or two. She viewed history not so much as a detour into the past but a way of informing the present, and so it was that Marion always went into bat for Hook when needed: she campaigned to save the branch library in the late 1970's and always resisted the temptation for the postal town "Chessington" to eclipse the identity of adjacent Hook. Marion Bone's remains were laid to rest this week in the Garden of Remembrance at St. Paul's Hook. She is survived by her younger sister Jean in Oxford, and her son Richard and grand-daughter, Gaia, both in California, USA.