Jump to content

Mark (thecat)


Recommended Posts

I am deeply saddened to hear of Mark's death.

I have special memories of Mark, in particular meeting him on one of his famous foxhunts and trailing him around Lincolnshire while he was heading for his one hundredth cache find. We sat together under the stars at one of my caches, after he found it in the dark, and talked of many things.


My condolences to his family and friends.

Link to comment

As a reminder of his contribution to geocaching, today I was fortunate to pick up the "Cheers to TheCat" TB released by Seasider in April 04.

About this item: In November 2003, legendary geoacacher TheCat travelled around Britain to collect dosh for charity. He had a load of high tech gadgets with him which enabled us to track his movements. A large co-ordination of cachers chased him around Britain and those that caught him got a gingerbread bear and a badge in return for a charitable donation! The event cache was - "Geocache Children in Need Fox Hunt" (GCGRGB). Now it is time for the badge to do some travelling!

Current GOAL: To travel around Britain just like TheCat did - but avoiding travelling in Citroen cars if possible!

I think that says it all about Mark and gives this TB a special purpose to continue with it's goal.

Link to comment

What ghastly news. I'm so sorry for his family and close friends.


I never actually met the guy. I tracked him around the country almost in real-time, when he was doing his Fox Hunt thing last year, but I was unable to intercept him in Scotlnd as I was watching him from Muscat, Oman.


Quite apart from the personal loss, his passing impoverishes all of us UK geocachers because he was so creative, inventive, and active in improving and enhanciing the geocaching experience for us Brit geocachers.


The Forester

Link to comment

As I am just an occasional cacher now and rarely look at the forums, this came as quite a shock.


I know that Mark and myself did not see eye to eye at times but, his generosity and love of geocacheing done more for the hobby in the UK than any other single person.


He will be sorely missed and the heart that failed him was solid gold and should be an inspiration to future cachers.


Sleep well Mark.

Link to comment

Although I heard the terrible news a couple of days ago, this is the first chance I've had to put into words the very real sadness I felt at losing someone whom I considered "a friend".


I met Mark on several occasions, sometimes sharing a beer or several, sometimes by the side of his car on Fox hunts. He was a true gentleman and I shall miss his dry sense of humour.


I was out in the hills geocaching today and as I sat on the very top of one in a howling gale I have to say that I thought of Mark and the wind blew away a tear or two.


Thanks for coming into my life mate, I'll miss you.

Link to comment

The last time I spoke with Mark was during a Grockles Grand day out. He phoned me with a problem he was having setting up his iQue to route him round the last cin foxhunt and I was glad as ever to spend a while chatting to him. He would sometimes phone me at night whilst I was working and we would chat for ages about the Yorkshire that we knew as kids, both coming from the same area.


I met him a couple of times and immediately liked his passion and Yorkshire determination.


Rest easy good guy.



Link to comment

Sad sad news indeed. Like many others here we never met Mark, although we did come very close at the last Fox Hunt, we missed he by about 2 minutes as he sped through Oxfordshire. The little communication I had with him through his online shop he was very helpful and seemed a nice genuine guy. His contribution to geocaching in the UK we be greatly missed.



Link to comment

Lynn and I were deeply sorrowed by this news on arriving back from a few days away.


Our thoughts are with Mark's family and friends at this terrible time.


We only started caching this year and, like many, have never met Mark. We did however make use regularly of his web site which has been an invaluable resource to us all. We just discovered this evening about his wonderful charity work with the'fox hunts'. What a marvelous person he must have been.


Rest in Peace Mark.


Martin and Lynn

Link to comment

My best memories of Mark were the very enjoyable day that Dan Wilson, Ben Piddington, he and I all spent filming shots for a video about geocaching that he was planning to make. It was never intended to be sold, but given away to people who wanted to know what caching was all about. We all gave our time freely, but most of the effort and equipment and drive came from Mark himself.


When we met up he realised he had left one of his microphones behind at home, and rather than compromise on the technical quality of the filming, we all popped into Dixons in Aylesbury to buy another one. Now, most people would have bought a cheap-ish one to see them through the day, knowing that they had a "proper" one at home. Not so Mark. "cheap-ish" microphones start around a tenner and go up to about £50. Thats the cheap range. The one Mark bought was £180, without batting an eyelid. As a professional recording engineer myself, it was of course the right decision, but I don't know anyone else who, in that position would have actually made the "right" decision. I was impressed from that moment on.


I remember thinking at the time "this is the man about whom some people have said that his website was designed to rake in money, or take over geocaching, or some other such hogwash". No, the man standing beside me handing over his plastic to a schoolboy Dixons assistant ("This is the better mic because it comes with a gold plug on it..."...huh?) was generous to a fault, and wished only to serve the people around him. All that I had heard about him (and listened to some of it, I am ashamed to say) simply did not stack up against what my eyes were seeing.


All day he drove us round, bought us lunch, bought us beer (well, beer for the others anyway) and never rushed anything. He talked about his love of geocaching, his love of doing silly things, his love of doing scary things (Bungee jumping, for example. Personally I think they are all mad...) just for the thrill. I wondered, at that point, whether he counted a day with us three as coming under the scary thrilling variety.


The next time I saw him was at Farley Mount, and once again he was nothing but energy and enthusiasm for the sport. But I guess the most outstanding example of mad determination came the night I caught the CIN fox at Newport Pagnell services. Standing in the middle of a windy car park, the rain peeing down in stair-rods, admiring the black box gizmo that did all the fancy tracking work, and trying not to shiver has got to be at the top of the list for dogged persistence. The poor boy who came along as his navigator hadn't slept for three days and by that point was fuelled entirely by coffee. But then neither had Mark, but you would never have guessed it, even though Mark had had three heart attacks, surgery, and age against him, and this kid had youth and fitness on his side. (I say "kid" yet in fact the chap was probably somewhere in his early 20s in reality, nevertheless still half the age of Mark!). Hmmm. Make you think doesn't it?


For someone who would typically be classed as "not particularly fit", Mark Thompson put the rest of us to shame in the endeavours he undertook.


When it is time for me to go, I hope I can do it somewhere as beautiful and peaceful as the Shetlands.


UK geocaching will miss him.

Link to comment

We only met Mark last year, on his fox hunt around the UK. For anyone to come up with raising money for charity in such a way, requires lots of hard work, and planning, something that obviously Mark did without asking for any rewards. This and the continual support of GeocacheUK (arguably the best regional Geocache site) he gave, proves he was a top notch bloke!.


We are very shocked by the news of his death - which appears so sudden. It makes us all consider how fragile life actually is. He will be missed greatly. Our deepest condolences go out to all of his friends and family.

Link to comment

A shame to hear about this too - I only had contact with him once, via email when i asked for something unusual via his website and he was very helpful. Then of course he helped tremendously with his shop so people could easily order stuff and then theres gcuk......


He'll be greatly missed. My thoughts and prayers go out to the family. I hope that this thread will be passed onto them as our "book of condolences"?

Link to comment

I was fortunate to have worked with Mark on the establishment of the Geocacheuk store. We spoke a number of times and corresponded via email quite a few more times over the years. This is a sad day for all and I will personally miss working with him.


My sincere condolences to his family, friends and the geocaching community.





Link to comment

I also didn't have the privilege of meeting Mark in person, but I did correspond with him several times via email. His website introduced me to the world of geocaching and as a thank you I turned a batch of his GeocacheUK numbered badges into TB's. Not much of a thank you, but he seemed to appreciate it.


My condolences to his family. My thoughts and prayers are with you.



Link to comment

Could I make a suggestion, please?


I don't know to whom I should direct my request, so I'll make it an open one.


Could someone who knew The Cat personally please find out who is his next of kin and send them a printout of every one of the messages which have been posted in this thread. (except this one!)


It won't alleviate their personal loss which they have incurred by his sadly premature passing, but it might let them know that some of his special personal qualities have been recognised quite widely. It may help them to know that.


Thanks in advance.



The Forester

Edited by The Forester
Link to comment

Like MossT, I'm an occasional cacher now, but it was with a great deal of sadness that I heard about Mark's death.


I met him on several occasions, but one I particularly remember is the first of his CIN Foxhunts. He'd published an approximate route, having gathered requests for stops from the cachers around the country. I had tracked his progress down the east coast and around London, and headed to Leatherhead to try and head him off.


However, unbenown to me, thanks to the lack of hunters (I think only one or two had even tried during the journey south) he'd decided to skip on to Watford, so had gone straight past on the M25. When I called, he kindly sat in a layby in Staines and waited to be caught!


More than that, having done it all once, he went out and did a bigger CIN event last year.


May he rest in peace.



Link to comment

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...