Frank Lowe

 1936 - 2021

by Wendy Nix, Midlands Carriagedriving

Members of Midlands Carriagedriving are mourning the loss of Frank Lowe, one of the club’s co-founders, who passed away in early December aged 85 years. It was in the mid-70s when Frank and several of his friends set up what was then Midlands Driving Trials Group.

Frank gave generously of his time, teaching, stewarding and organising events and training days. Among those who he taught were Elisabeth Greensmith, Caroline Weiss, Chris Doughty and Mike Fallowell. Mike recalls how he would drive up to Frank’s home in Mansfield every Saturday for his lesson where he was taught firstly how to harness up and how to care for the driven horse’s feet.

“We would go straight out onto the road with Frank and once we got going, he would hand over the reins. I asked what if anything goes wrong and Frank replied, ‘you won’t realise I’ve taken back the reins I’ll be so quick’. One horse, Brandy, didn’t like cattle and Frank would take us down a lane where a bullock would, more often than not, put its head over the hedge, it taught you to be ready for anything. After the lesson we were always invited indoors for a cup of tea, Frank was a very sociable man. It was always difficult to judge how old Frank was, he was so active.”

Frank was one of the first to compete under national rules, in horse team classes, becoming friends with George Bowman and the late Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh among others. He later drove a tandem at club level and also took to successfully ploughing with a horse pair; he was the man to go to for breaking horses and ponies to harness as well as sourcing them for his pupils.

All at Midlands send their condolences to Frank’s wife and his family on their sad loss.

Frank Lowe with one of his beloved horses. Photo courtesy of the Lowe family.