Lancaster man leaves entire £750,000 estate to Cancer Research in memory of his twin brother

Skerton born cabinet maker Tom Theobald, who died last year aged 94, hoped that one day there would be a break through in cancer treatments.

By Nick Lakin
Tuesday, 25th August 2020, 7:00 am
Tom Theobald left his entire estate to Cancer Research following his death last year.
Tom Theobald left his entire estate to Cancer Research following his death last year.

Tom and his twin brother Edward were born in Skerton in 1924, living in Earl Street.

They went to Skerton School, and then Tom took an apprenticeship at Waring and Gillows in Lancaster.

He trained as a cabinet maker where he worked in some impressive places such as Leighton Hall as well as fitting furniture on big ships.

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Twin brothers Tom and Edward Theobald.

Marquetry, a form of furniture decoration, became Tom’s particular skill, as he had a great eye for detail and precision.

He produced many beautiful pieces, and his work won him several prizes.

In his spare time Tom loved to cycle and walk in the Lake District with Edward, and later moved to Glentworth Road in Morecambe with Edward and his sister Violet.

Lesley Fear, Tom's half cousin, said: "Both twins were also good artists, their love of nature shining through in their paintings.

Tom working as a cabinet maker.

"Tom was also a keen gardener."

In World War Two, Tom served in the RAF, spending time in Italy, whilst Edward served in the army.

Lesley said: "He was a loving man who without any qualms devoted his life to caring for his sister Violet and later Edward who became ill with cancer.

"His family were always his top priority. Tom was an extremely grateful man, he woke in a morning thinking how lucky he was to see another day and was always thankful for anything people did for him.

Tom had a passion for art and craft.

"He had a fantastic memory and adventurous spirit."

In his 80s, Tom went to Norway to see the Northern Lights, staying in an ice hotel and driving a snow buggy.

He died after a fall at the age of 94 on February 25 2019, leaving his estate of more than £750,000 to the charity Cancer Research in memory of his twin brother.

Lesley said the generous gift demonstrated his love for people and a hope that one day there would be a breakthrough in cancer treatments.

Tom Theobald