The Brixham Ace Blog
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17.01.1935 – 2015
Bob was a keen volunteer at ACE for 17 years. He was a great help to all the members and he created our logo. He served as a Military Policeman in Germany at the time of the Berlin Wall and then he trained as a draughtsman. When he retired he helped at the Brixham museum recording the military artefacts excavated at the Berry Head forts. He was a very keen fisherman and cared for his dogs.
He leaves a loving family.
He will be missed by us all.
In Loving Memory of Wilson Melville Vaughan Furr
4 August 1926 – 26 September 2015
Wilson will be missed by his many friends at ACE, where he was a keen volunteer for 22 years. He was always very helpful to the members. He worked closely with his wife June organising sales to raise funds. The picture shows him winning at our Easter raffle this year.
He was a military man, a keen water polo player and swimmer.
He leaves a loving family.
In Loving Memory of Denise Morris
25th July 1958 - 18th April 2013
Denise was a very welcoming, popular and hard working member of ACE.
Alongside her mother Irene she was a very creative member of the Pottery Class.
She was also very proactive in the computer classes when learning Powerpoint techniques and when she helped to teach beginners master their first introductions to computer skills.
She introduced a 'change collection jar' in order to raise valuable funds.
She was a cheerful ACE member during outings. She is especially remebered for her singing on the steam train from Buckfastleigh.
Denise is greatly missed. She is fondly remebered by Lorna's poem:
A Lost Friend
A welcoming smile and an open heart
A mischievous broad grin that lit up your face
And the room you were in
Your achievements in life were quietly substantial
You were the supportive friend we will all miss.
We were so proud of you Denise
And we had the pleasure to share your life
And admire your bravery and determination
I hope we will meet again
And once more see that extraordinary smile
And feel its warmth.
In Loving Memory of Robin Jackson Chapman
4th July 1968 - 23rd July 2012
Robin’s funeral was held at Stockman’s Service Chapel, Brixham on 3rd August 2012 with his family and many friends.
It opened with Robin’s favourite music from American Wrestling and a poem that ends:
“Do not think of me as gone
I am with you in each new dawn
So do not stay here to morn and cry
For now I’m free
And I’m on high”.
Robin and his mother Theresa were founder members of ACE in October 1989.
Robin loved life. He was always cheerful and positive. He loved to talk about his favourite subject, American Wrestling, with all its drama of colourful characters and their bone crunching antics.
He loved taking part in ACE activities: Sports Mobility, with Jon, where he liked skittles, darts and winning; Music, with Mick, where he loved playing his drums and surprising his mother with his singing.
We are all sad at the passing of another ACE member, but we rejoice in our fond memories of Robin. He will be missed.
We thank Theresa for all her hard work, cheerful enthusiasm and loving care.
In Loving Memory of Nicholas Miles
17 November 1956 - 24 August 2012
Nick was a popular member of ACE for many years. He loved the social atmosphere and he especially enjoyed talking and joking with fellow members and Christie. He was always cheerful despite being confined by his illness.
I best remember him in the pottery class and his participation in Kay’s summer holiday project when we worked together to build a replica of Johnny Depp. Nick excelled at sewing Johnny’s elegant clothes and plaiting his long black hair. Johnny Depp then graced the ACE garden during a lovely warm, mild summer.
Nick is survived by his wife Shirley and daughters Donna and Ella.
Nick died on the day of their 27th Wedding Anniversary.
We will miss you Nick.
In Loving Memory of Peter Parker
Peter first became involved with ACE when he and his wife Sue drove our members in their taxis.
Sadly Peter’s health deteriorated and they gave up their business and they both became members of ACE.
Peter loved being a member of the Thursday Group and participating in discussions with the visiting speakers. He enjoyed debates with the local Councillors when they joined ACE to update us on local politics.
Peter will be missed for his forth right views by his many friends at ACE.
In Loving Memory of Trevor Matthews
Trevor was 51 years old when he passed away peacefully during Easter 2012.
He lived at the Chimes Residential Home in Paignton with fellow ACE members Margaret, Paul and Alan.
Trevor loved coming to ACE, where he took part in the Thursday Group, Sports Mobility and Music.
Trevor was a friendly person, a good team member and he enjoyed the company of others.
He had a good rhythm on the drums and loved dancing and singing especially at Christmas festivities.
He was very competitive especially when playing skittles. He liked being on the winning side and receiving the applause.
He enjoyed group outings like the visit to Seal Hayne at Newton Abbot.
Trevor will be sadly missed.
In Loving Memory of Alan Dazley
Alan has been a member of ACE for over a decade. He was always the person that greeted you on arrival with hand outstretched; often our visiting speaker took him for the organiser because of his smart appearance and well mannered ways. We noticed that Alan’s priority was his ‘cuppa’; no sooner was he in the door than he was heading for the drinks machine.
He was a quiet member of ACE always sitting with his close friends Paul and Margaret. He was keen to have a go at new crafts such as textiles, painting glass, mosaics and pottery. He helped create last years TRAIL recycled sculpture of a rock pool made from an old billiards table and he made some mosaic fish for the Rising Tides project. These pieces were on show throughout the summer where thousands of people saw them on Teignmouth sea front; something that made him very proud.
Alan tried several classes from gardening to sport mobility which he really enjoyed, especially being on the winning team! He was also a dab hand at volley ball, demonstrating eye and hand co-ordination, which many others find difficult.
Over the years the ACE trustees have arranged many trips and events for members – to Newquay Zoo, BBQ’s in the garden and a visit to Dartington where as usual Alan was the smartest, appropriately dressed like a country gentleman and with ready smile.
We shall remember him as quiet, polite and well mannered, a man who got a lot out of ACE. The trustees would like to thank his family for supporting ACE today. Alan was a key member and this is a charity that is run by and for people with disabilities enabling them to lead a happy and normal social life as they enjoy learning.
In Loving Memory of Carol Downer
5th February 1944 to 5th January 2011
Carol was a very keen member of ACE. She enjoyed meeting her many friends at the Thursday Group, with a chat over a cup of tea or coffee before listening and joining in with the visiting speaker.
After lunch she took part in the ‘The Write Way’ Creative Writing class. Sam, the tutor, said of Carol when writing to her family,” I just wanted to let you know how sorry I am to hear the news about Carol - I remember her very well from when she was part of our group. She was a lively character and always had something to say! She and I always had a giggle together about various things.
I found her to be a very well-read and knowledgeable member of the group and was very sorry when she no longer came to class.
My dad died very suddenly several years ago, when I was three months pregnant. Carol was very warm-hearted and sincere in her condolences, which I will never forget. She also talked very warmly about my baby (as then unborn). Ned was born in April and unfortunately, when I returned from maternity leave Carol had left the group so I was unable to bombard her with the obligatory photos!
She excelled in the gardening class with her enthusiasm and extensive knowledge of all aspects.
Carol will be missed.
In Loving Memory of Irene May Trow, known to us all as ‘Rene’.
29 May 1924 to 20 October 2010
Rene, mother to Denise and Deborah, were all regular members of ACE, where they especially enjoyed the interesting variety of visiting speakers in the Thursday Group and being creative in pottery and art and craft classes.
The ‘girls’ with other family members loved going shopping together, without necessarily buying very much. It was being together as a family that really mattered.
Rene will be reunited with her beloved Dennis. They married at the end of the war after his service in the Royal Navy and they opened a builder’s merchants together.
Rene is missed by us all.
In Loving Memory of
19 January 1957 – 17 October 2010
Chris, the loving husband of Anita and his two sons, was a keen member of ACE, where he loved to express himself in art and craft classes, gardening and Summer Activities.
Anita and Chris were very happy together; both caring for the other. But sadly a reoccurring stroke took him away far too early.
They loved sharing each other’s company; shopping, walking their terriers on the beach and attending music festivals.
Chris, a former biker, dreamed of owning a Harley Davidson motor cycle and he departed this earth in a coffin decorated with pictures of ‘Harleys’ carried by Anita and other bikers.
Anita’s parting words at Chris’s funeral were,” Go get yourself on that Harley you always wanted and ride on forever babe”.
Chris is missed by us all.
Charlotte Parkinson: 11th April 1981 – 28th April 2010
Anyone who knew Charlotte would notice how sensitive she was to others in her company. She had a great awareness and perception of what was going on around her, despite her dual sensory impairment. Charlotte had a great love of literature, having read many books and poetry. She joined our Writing Class at ACE a few years ago. Not only was she a very popular member of the Class, but a most productive participant too, having written some very powerful and moving poetry, along with other items, provoking interesting comments from the rest of the group. (You can find examples of Charlotte’s work below this article).
Charlotte had a wonderful sense of humour, which seems to run in the family. I remember her ‘party piece’ was reciting the well known monologue made famous by Stanley Holloway, of the story of ‘Albert and The Lion’, done in a very authentic North Country accent, much to everyone’s amusement.
Whenever I think of Charlotte I see calmness and serenity. I never once remember her getting anxious or agitated over anything. In fact, Sam our Writing Tutor, once said to me during Charlotte’s long absence from the Class due to her dialysis programme, “I miss her calming influence on the group.”
Thank you Charlotte for all the love you gave us. Thank you for just being. Rest in Peace.
Brixham Adult & Community Learning is mourning the passing of Biddy Shillitoe/Clarke who was a student at Brixham for over a decade. Her talents in the arts were shared with many people who were drawn to her because of her ‘vivacity for life’. Biddy was almost 89, but young in spirit and described by Linden Lynn, a fellow student, as ‘offering love, encouragement and colour to the world.’ She died after a short illness having recently received her award as an outstanding student at the South Devon College awards ceremony. She was nominated for her artistic talents by Jenny Harriman who encouraged her to exhibit her work last year as an inspiration to others.
Biddy first discovered the pleasure of working in clay when she was living and working in Northern Rhodesia and the Belgian Congo for 18 years. She was a physiotherapist who brought up her four children to explore the world they lived in. Her primary enjoyment of pottery began by making figures from anthill clay with the children, which the sun dried.
When she returned to England she enrolled for an evening class at a primary school in South London and there discovered the wonders of firing and glazing clay. She continued to work as a physiotherapist in Devon. In 1973 she decided to link her medical knowledge to her interest in art and was accepted as a mature student at St Albans College of Art where she gained a diploma in Art Therapy.
This gave her access to the ceramic studio enabling her to express her ideas in clay. Later Biddy worked with the residents of Moorfield Psychiatric Hospital and with children at Mayfield School.
Aged 87 Biddy said “Due to my work as a physiotherapist the human body has always been an inspiration as have relationships in my life. These are reflected in the pieces I make for my own enjoyment. ‘Open Studios’ at Brixham College in September 2008 was the first opportunity for me to have a public exhibition and I was thrilled to show my work to others. I hope the public agreed with my grand-daughter who said with surprise in her voice ‘Gran has got a sense of humour’”.
Biddy took part with a show that has been likened to the work of Beryl Cook in 3D, with lots of quizzical and naughty creations!
Everyone who knew her will have delighted in her company and her sheer love of life - indomitable until the end.
Anna Teresa Howlett - 21st July 1954 – 22nd August 2008
Anna lived in shared accommodation for disabled adults at Dragon’s Tail, Douglas Avenue, Brixham, where her apartment complex overlooks St Mary’s bay. She often remarked on how fascinating it was to look out across the bay at the English Channel and watch the ever changing moods of weather, sea and sky. She liked tending her small garden outside her apartment and feeding the birds on her balcony.
She was a regular user of the learning activities offered by the ACE charity at Brixham College and could often be seen travelling to class on her electric wheelchair. She enjoyed the varied topics of the Thursday Group, dressing up for theme days, the textile class and gardening.
Anna was a valued member of ACE and she is greatly missed.
Brian Motley (aged 74) passed peacefully away on Tuesday 29th April 2008 after a short illness in hospital.
Brian was a familiar figure around Brixham for the past two decades. He lived at St Kilda’s and attended Adult Education classes at Brixham College and was a member of ACE (Access to Community Education). He would be seen each day tapping his way down town with a ‘hand rolled cigarette’ in his mouth. He would stop to chat to anyone he knew and for many years he helped on the tripper boats at the harbour.
Brian was a real character who excelled in the ACE pottery class making whimsical birds which he sold to supplement his pocket money. He would persuade people to buy them to provide more tobacco. Principal Chris Turner bought one of his swans for £10 and many commented that his work was good enough to be exhibited in high class art galleries. Indeed Brian along with all ACE members had his pottery mask and pots recently on show at the ACE 20th Century Art exhibition at Brixham College last term.