On the 26th of April 1967 in Bridlington Yorkshire, a small miracle took place that would have an effect on each and every one of us here today, a tiny baby entered the world, he was fortunate to be the son of an amazing young woman Jenny who would, love, nurture, encourage, guide and support him in all his adventures throughout his life, teaching him the important lessons of life.
From Bridlington Jenny took her young son back to her home town of Ipswich in Suffolk, where her parents played a large part in Nic’s young life. This is where I first encountered this charming young man imagine if you will a 12 month old Nic with very fine blonde hair sitting on his pottie and there you have him my egg in an eggcup with twinkling eyes a mischievous grin and those dimples. I was smitten. I am fortunate that he and Jenny have been part of my life ever since.
By the time Nic was three he was living on a small holding in a village just outside Ipswich with black dog, lots of chickens and all manner of animals, even a rescued young bull which of course was named Taurus! It was while here that his love of nature really began , around the small holding and in the country lanes around his home and that love stayed with him throughout his life.
As he grew up he attended senior school at Kesgrave, it was while in school and on nights out in town he formed his friendships with Harvey and with Jonathan these friendships would endure throughout his life. It was during this period also that he had his first taste of travel with a family trip to Pennsylvania. The world would eventually become his oyster as he travelled through his life.
On leaving school Nic applied for a position as game keeper on the Duke of Norfolk’s Estate in Sussex, he was of course successful and thus his first career began. Because of his youth, Colin Cowdray his employer, requested Jenny accompany him as housekeeper in a small cottage on the Downs in beautiful surroundings.
He was a hard worker, he acquired several dogs, learned the art of rearing pheasants, trapping, shooting, beating, and furthered his love and knowledge of the countryside. However, for a young man, living in an isolated cottage on the Downs his hours fully taken up , what with chasing poachers at night, early mornings rearing pheasants and trapping, assisting at shoots, along with all his other responsibilities, left no time at all for a social life. So a new chapter was about to begin.
They returned to Ipswich and while he still enjoyed country pursuits with his Jack Russell and his ferrets, Nic found a job in a Lumber yard to tide him over until he eventually enrolled on a one year Forestry course at The Local Agricultural College in Otley, in his usual fashion he made friends wherever he went. On completing this course he and his friend Ed took off to Australia to work their way around, going their separate ways after a while and having their own adventures, Nic working hard and partying hard too. Learning to surf, as you do, when a young man living in Australia. That was fun…… what’s next?
On his return from Australia he applied for a course on Arboriculture at Merrist Wood College in Hampshire. It was here he was to meet Kathy and make many more lifetime friends whose sofas he has surfed many times in the ensuing years. He has always valued his friends and kept in touch with them throughout his life.
These were his days of Bungee jumping and various feats of derring do.
By now he had become a skilled Tree surgeon and was living in a small caravan, working all over the home counties and in Europe, the higher the tree the better he liked it, however, the London planes he was less fond of they were a pain to work on. Unfortunately he suffered a hand injury which for a time curtailed his exploits. He ventured down to Cheltenham and joined Kathy for a while trailing mud and wood chips with him wherever he went.
After a while he returned once more to his caravan in the Home Counties and continued his work as a tree surgeon, even popping over to Paris to tend to trees there! Whatever Nic did he worked hard at and made sure he was the best that he could be.
He continued as a tree surgeon working with Noddy until by chance a colleagues brother needed someone to stand in for him driving a Camera unit to Germany, Nic, ever game for something different and ready to help out a friend agreed to go. He rather liked what he saw in that glimpse, it was time for a change .
All through his life he would be returning to Ipswich to visit Jenny and his friends in the area, it was on one of these visits he was to meet his future wife, a whirlwind romance, a wedding in Las Vegas and a home in Greenfern avenue for a while until it had run it’s course and it was time to move on.
Nic met Ian Buckley and his new career was about to take off. Ian took him under his wing and Nic, as usual set about learning new skills, taking the various courses and gaining the required qualifications for his new career. He worked hard and in the next few years he travelled all over Britain and abroad with the film crews he worked on adverts, tv productions as well as many blockbuster movies and became a well-respected member of the filming fraternity.
Nic ever aware of the help and encouragement he had received whilst learning his craft and ,as a senior member, was always ready to give a hand to encourage and help the younger members as they worked their way into the business.
Whilst a very hard worker and a hard taskmaster at times, as the crew will attest to, he was also a very hard player too, ever the joker and full of fun, known by the lads for his specialist art work on set and for his wonderful singing voice too I believe. He was never happier than when he was with the lads having a laugh, he was quite the entertainer.
Nic led a full and varied life in the leisure time he had over the years, spending time at the races with Jonathan, Travelling in Thailand with Harvey, his friend from school, they were delayed in getting to Thailand, because of flooding in Britain , however once they arrived, there seemed to be some kind of radio silence, not much was heard from them during that trip and the experiences the lads had whilst there all remained a mystery to Jenny. What happens in Thailand apparently stays in Thailand, but they did manage to return in one piece.
He travelled in many countries , on a farm in Israel with some mates, gradually working their way around the area as many of you may be aware with Nic’s lifestyle he occasionally had a touch of the collywobbles however just before his return to Blighty, he apparently sat in the sea for most of three days it being the safest place while it worked it’s way out of his system.
He visited New Zealand, for a while, whilst a tree surgeon and managed to get himself in the newspapers atop one of the highest trees there, doing a spot of serious pruning.
Nic too was the owner of many vehicles during his life, he loved his Volkswagen camper van and his Land rover various cars and had a penchant for Audis and motorcycles many of these vehicles he managed to crash and each time break another part of his body the effects of which would eventually curtail his long walks and lead to shorter walks.
Wherever Nic went and whatever Nic did he made friends and he treasured them all, he was loyal and would always fight for the rights of others. He loved to party with them playing poker , having a bevy, and a singalong , he liked to tease and play pranks on you he was kind and generous and great fun and actually he was quite the dapper man about town, he liked fine clothes, fine wines and good food and indeed all the finer things in life.
Through all of these adventures, always there, was Jenny, supporting and encouraging and to Nic the best Mum ever. It was from Jenny he gained his love of art and antiques, his thirst for knowledge and his love of books and poetry, his collecting. How he was fascinated with Magic and collected many books and tricks and was quite apt at performing the occasional one. Not only magic but circus too, he had a growing collection of circus paraphernalia and posters, being a Taurus he also developed an interest in bull fighting, another collection of books, Card tricks too even Boxing and of course a large collection of books on country pursuits. There was no end to his interests and book collections. Jenny and Nic would attend antiques and collectible fairs, antique shops and Junk shops in search of treasures. Nic showed Jenny Amsterdam, Venice, Rome and they toured Buckinghamshire and surrounding areas, walking in the woodlands around Burnham in the midst of Nature his natural habitat.
Jenny and Nic had just acquired a small caravan which they had plans to ‘do the fairs’ with in the future, when the job in Morocco came up and Nic although suffering somewhat with his sleep apnea and a bit under par decided to go, for where he liked to be was with the crew, the lads whose company he enjoyed and the work he loved this was where he was happiest. It was his last gig .
Some very special words for us all from Mum, Jenny.
NICK WAS MY ROCK HE MADE MY LIFE INTERESTING, HE MADE ME LAUGH, GIGGLE AND SOMETIMES CRY, HE TOOK ME TRAVELING TO PLACES I WOULD NEVER HAD HAD THE CHANCE TO GO TO NICK WAS WISE, CARING AND PROTECTIVE, WOULD EVEN TELL ME IF I HAD A HAIR GROWING OUT OF MY CHIN OR IF MY MAKE UP WAS SLIGHTLY INDIAN,ON THE WARPATH.
HE DIDN’T JUST HAVE FRIENDS, HE VALUED THEM. FROM SCHOOL, COLLEGES, ARBORISTS, NEIGHBOURS AND ALL IN THE FILM WORLD.
HIS MOST REDEEMING FEATURE BEING, IF HE LOST THE PLOT OR HIS TEMPER, HE WOULD ALWAYS REGRET IT AND ATTEMPT TO APOLOGISE.
I FEEL BLESSED TO HAVE BEEN HIS MOTHER. MY WORLD WILL NEVER BE THE SAME.
MY SINCERE THANKS TO ALL WHO HAVE SUPPORTED ME AND OR PAID HOMAGE TO HIM IN VARIOUS WAYS ,TO JONATHAN AND ESPECIALLY TO ALEX AND THE CREW IN MOROCCO. I ONLY WISH HE COULD WITNESS THE LOVE AND RESPECT YOU HAVE ALL SHOWN HIM TODAY
Nicholas Mark Cupac a man for all seasons, an intelligent, well-read, well-travelled, hardworking, fun loving, caring man that has enriched our lives for ever we are proud to have had the privilege to know you and share your life.