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From the Sussex Express, 8th October 1915



We regret to chronicle the death of Charlie Tuppen, the veteran shepherd, on Wednesday evening at his son’s residence in Glynde. Deceased was just 90 years of age and died from senile decay. He had the reputation of being the oldest shepherd in Sussex, and it is only three years back that he relinquished his calling. He was born at Lullington and, excepting for a short spell during which he helped to build the railway at Glynde, he was a shepherd throughout his life, as was his father before him.

He used to tell the story of his father being a smuggler, and the method adopted of breaking him of the habit was his mother’s declaration that she, if he continued, would most certainly become a smuggler herself. That settled Charles’s father. Deceased was exceptionally fond of singing, and few men knew more of the genuine old Sussex songs than he. He would sing them in their true dialect; and on more than one occasion he was visited by gentlemen who wished to know a certain melody, or the original words of some ancient Sussex verse. He was hale and hardy, his faculties were unimpaired to the last, and he had never, excepting the last three weeks, been known to be ill. His longest journey from Glynde was to Horsham, and that as to visit the Fair. His wife died about twelve years ago. He had a family of six sons and five daughters, but only nine are now alive. He was grandfather to about forty and great grandfather to a fair number. His brother, the late John Tuppen of Kingston, was the father of seventeen children, and his wife used to play stoolball at the age of eighty.

Deceased, acting as a shepherd, was for fifty years engaged by the late Lord Hampden’s family, and previously, acting in the same capacity, he was employed by the late Mr Steyning Beard of Bevendean, near Brighton.

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