Grave no 14 - Major J I H Friend
Born in 1885 James Irvine Hatfeild Friend was one of a long line of Friends
who had owned the Northdown Estate for over 500 years. He was born in
Northdown House currently owned by Thanet District Council. He started
farming in 1903 and was the first Kent man to gain the world championship
with a sample of grain of barley grown at Northdown in 1929.
He was a member or often Chair of many local groups such as Chairman
of the Thanet branch of the Men of Kent and Kentish Men. He worked in
and for the local community and was a Ramsgate County Magistrate. His
membership of committees has been calculated at 32 for Thanet!
He was a member of the East Kent Yeomanry, saw active military service in
France and Gallipoli and was awarded the Military Cross. He served in the
Buffs from 1939 to 1942 and was on guard duty at Manston during the Battle of
Britain. In the event of an invasion he had been selected to lead the local
resistance groups in the area.
It was during his lifetime that the Friend family surrendered ownership of
much of their land on which the Palm Bay estate has since been built. The
main house passed to the Council and much of the grounds now remain open
as Northdown Park for general public enjoyment. Major Friend was given an
OBE in 1935 and died in 1955.
Proceed along the path and you approach a tarmac section. If you look to
your right you will see the John Sangerís tomb just back on the path coming
to meet yours.