A butcher who was well known to the residents of Steeple Ashton and the surrounding area has passed away peacefully at home on September 3 aged 85.

Graham Chappell was a hard worker and successfully ran his own butchery business for many years, 35 of them in Steeple Ashton. He also provided quality meat to all the surrounding villages and to parts of Trowbridge.

He supported the village by helping to host the Forget-me-Not club lunches on a Tuesday. He was a well-known member of the community and was a very caring person, always asking how everyone was.

Mr Chappell came down to Wiltshire whilst doing his National Service at RAF Melksham. He was born in Derbyshire on October 17 1933, the son of Albert and Annie Chappell and grew up in Rossington, a mining village in south Yorkshire. Graham had three younger sisters and they were a very close family.

Whilst stationed at Melksham, he met his wife Nancy at a dance in the Trowbridge Town Hall and they married in 1955. Graham was dedicated his wife, and did not like to be parted from her.

He was a great dancer, and the height of fashion, dressing as a ‘Teddy Boy’ with drape jacket, drainpipe trousers and crepe shoes. The Jive was Graham’s favourite dance and even up and up and till his early 80s, would throw down his walking stick and twirl around his daughters and granddaughters.

Graham was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes in 1963 but always had a very positive attitude, staying fit and well and receiving the Alan Nabarro Medal in 2013 for this condition. The medal is awarded today to people who have lived with diabetes for 50 years or more.

During his working life, when he delivered meat to the elderly, his visits were very much appreciated as he’d stop to have a cup of tea with many of his customers, especially those housebound or living alone.

Graham was also involved with the Trowbridge Swimming Club in the 1970s. In Steeple Ashton and Keevil, he was regularly seen as Father Christmas in the schools and playgroups and on the village green.

Mr Chappell was a very skilled wood-turner and always enjoyed making things for his family. He spent many happy hours in his workshop which he named ‘Sunshine Alley’. Being a very practical man, he could mend most things and even serviced Aga cookers for villagers.

Family always meant everything to Mr Chappell, being a wonderful father to his four children, Julie, Adam, Todd and Amy and also a loving grandad and great-grandad to his 13 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren. He was always very patient and encouraging , and his wise words will be remembered.

A celebration of his life will be held in St Mary’s Church, Steeple Ashton, on Thursday September 19 at 2.30pm.