A TRIBUTE TO JACK NEWELL OF FELTHAM.
I was very sad to hear of the passing of Jackie Newell on Sunday 8th March, just a few weeks short of his 98 birthday. He was a true gentleman and a legend of pigeon racing in the Middlesex area for over 70 years. Jack was simply the best! The Newell’s are a pigeon racing family through and through and have won it all in Federation, Combine and National events over many years. Jackie raced very successfully in partnership with his late son, John, for many years.
The 1991 National Flying Club Pau Grand National was the highlight of Feltham’s, Jack and John Newell’s successful 70 year racing pigeon career. They won the greatest prize in British pigeon racing, with nearly 5,000 birds taking part, recording 1st, 4th and 36th open. A fantastic performance! Their Pau National winner was their Marriott dark chequer hen, Champion ‘Betty’s Choice’, so named because Jack’s wife, Betty, picked her out for the National. This hen was on her second time at Pau and was sent to win, feeding an eight day old youngster. Jack and John’s second bird was clocked over one hour later to record 4th open and was a Marriott blue chequer hen called, ‘Carrie Ann’. This was this hen’s sixth time at the Pau National, sent sitting 14 day old eggs and had previously won 1st club Nantes. In recent seasons the Newell loft had recorded many positions from the NFC Pau Grand National race including: 112th, 148th, 160th, 180th and 199th open.
The Newell’s race natural and widowhood, with the main ‘H’ shaped racing loft housing stock birds, young birds and the natural racers. This loft had a slate pitched roof and open door trapping. Their widowhood loft was built on top of the garage and this loft housed eighteen cocks, with most of these being Janssen based, and fly the card through to Bergerac (450 miles). They were fed a standard widowhood mixture and were broken down. The cocks reared two babies each, being paired up at the end of January, and flew out one hour morning and evening. The loft had won its best positions from the Pau National with natural hens, sent sitting about ten day old eggs and small youngsters. In its long and highly successful racing career the Newell loft had won 1st Federation countless times and 1st open Combine from France several times. One of the all-time great lofts!
Ron and Jim Newell are sons of Jack Newell and started their pigeon partnership in 1976 with late breds from their father and some stock from Jack Jackson of Southall. The brothers were novices until young bird racing in 1978 when they had four races in the Ashford SRFC and recorded: 1st club, 1st Three Borders Federation (1,456 birds) Weymouth, 1st club, 1st Three Borders Federation (1,091 birds) Exeter, 1st club, 1st Three Borders Federation, 1st open BTB Combine (2,656 birds) Plymouth and 6th club Weymouth. Brilliant young bird racing! What a brilliant pigeon racing family! RIP Jackie Newell.
KEITH MOTT (March 2020).