Warm tributes paid to ‘Colonel’ Gordon Boswell of Spalding

Gordon Boswell inside his Romany Museum in Clay Lake, Spalding.
Gordon Boswell inside his Romany Museum in Clay Lake, Spalding.

The founder of a Spalding museum dedicated to the culture and traditions of the Romany community and its language has died, aged 76.

Gordon Boswell, who opened the Boswell Romany Museum in February 1995 and became a popular figure at events in Spalding, suffered a heart attack at his home on Saturday evening.

Dozens of cards and phone calls have been received by his family, including wife Margaret, and Gordon’s passing came just three weeks after celebrating his birthday.

As well as his wife, Mr Boswell leaves three children, ten grandchildren and 17 great-grandchildren.

Margaret said: “Gordon was special, particularly amongst the Romany people, and the amount of people putting up photos of him on the internet has just been endless.

“Gordon was loved very much by his family, while one of his closest friends said he was a man who people respected and admired.”

Gordon was loved very much by his family, while one of his closest friends said he was a man who people respected and admired

Margaret Boswell

Along with his wife, Gordon first came to Spalding in 1961 and helped his father Sylvester in running a scrap yard in Clay Lake, Spalding.

But after giving up his involvement in waste disposal, Gordon turned the scrap yard into a museum full of artefacts, photographs and memorabilia of Romany life.

Margaret said: “There were a couple of things which Gordon was proud of, one was being president of Spalding Rotary Club and the other was going over to America and being made a Kentucky Colonel.”