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Obituaries

Obituaries will be added to this page once a month on the last Friday of the month. They will remain on the page for three months, and will then be removed.

To submit an obituary, send a picture (if desired) which has been cropped to 150 x 150 (thumbnail size) and a maximum of 150 words to selina@sigbi.org.


Brenda Beetham – SI Medway and Maidstone

Brenda was a Maidstone Soroptimist and always very supportive. Introduced her neighbour, who was our treasurer, and Janet, another neighbour.

In 2010, Brenda and Janet made a beautiful patchwork quilt that was raffled in aid of Project Sierra.

Had an interesting life at sea with her Sea Captain husband and missed him dreadfully when he died several years ago. Had expertise as a Charity Fundraiser, and one of her favourite charities was Sea Cadets.

Nellie Adjaye remembers her chats with Brenda about Ghana. This resulted in a large donation of some unwanted eye medicines from Brenda’s local pharmacy to a rural eye clinic. The eye Doctors and Nurses in Ghana were grateful.

An active member of Social and Fund-raising Committee. She helped organise Weekender parties that were popular, opportunity for retail therapy and raising monies for club’s projects.

After a talk about victims of traffickers and need to be safe and Brenda volunteered to drive victims with escort to safe houses in other parts of UK. She kept this activity quiet to avoid contact with traffickers who would want to track their victims.

Brenda left prior to closure of SI Maidstone and so did not transfer to SI Medway and Maidstone. She will be missed by all.


Barbara Sykes – SI Dewsbury and District

Barbara died in hospital on 2nd December 2021. She joined the club in 1978. Barbara was proud to be an ‘old girl’ of Wheelwright Grammar School for Girls in Dewsbury, she trained as a physiotherapist at Leeds General Infirmary working there and also at Dewsbury Health Authority (now The Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust) becoming District Physiotherapist.

Barbara was president of SI Dewsbury during the Golden Jubilee of SI Yorkshire in 1986-87, her main charity was the Yorkshire Lupus Group, a condition which affected many years of her life. She was club Press and Publicity officer from 1980 to 1986 and 1992 to c2000, a position which introduced her to a young local press photographer in 1982 who she then invited to join the club in 1983 (and later progress to Editor of the Yorkshire newsletter), a fact she would recall on many occasions.

She was responsible for helping to compile the history of SI Dewsbury which serves as a valuable reference for members. She will be fondly remembered and much missed by club members.


Maureen Foy – SI Cockermouth and District

Maureen initially joined Whitehaven club but moved to Cockermouth club to be nearer home. Soroptimism gave her a way to express her passion for women and girls as well as giving her a channel to stand up for the underdog.

Working as a hospital social worker she became dissatisfied at the quality of care offered to the elderly in the community and persuaded her husband to build a care home in a local village whose occupants were often underprivileged and frequently on benefits.

She went on to provide the award winning care for her residents and at the same time, employment and training for local women enabling them to work shifts around the needs of their families.

Maureen totally embraced the spirit of friendship and was a perfect fit in the club. She used her home for fundraising  events. She was an aggressive  ambassador for Fair Trade and actively supported  the local  Calvert Trust centre that provides outdoor activities and amazing opportunities for people with disabilities.

Maureen was always bubbly and happy will be remembered with a smile by all who knew her.

Jennifer Pell – SI Halifax

Jennifer Pell, Bookseller, died on 25th September 2021. She was a committed and dedicated Soroptimist for 50 years. Jennifer, daughter of a former Soroptimist, served as President of Halifax from 1981-82. This being the International Year of the Disabled, she helped raise £500 for the Maurice Jagger Centre in Halifax for the Disabled which was nearing completion that year. The club currently holds its meetings here.

She was a trustee with Calderdale Talking Newspaper, a member of the Civic Trust, the Halifax Tradesmen’s Benevolent Committee, the Arts Society and Honorary Vice President of the Halifax Women’s Luncheon Club. She supported many charities including Overgate Hospice, the Air Ambulance and the Royal British Legion.

Her hobbies and interests were in History and in particular that of her native town Halifax.

She loved her work in bookselling, meeting and chatting with customers, many of whom became good friends.


Myra Sherwood – SI Kettering and District

Myra sadly passed away on Oct. 18th, peacefully. She was a Soroptimist for more than 40 years, taking an active role at all levels of the club, supporting Region and attending many Conferences. Myra will be missed by all who had the good fortune to know her.


Anne Dalton – SI Lancaster

Anne was introduced to Soroptimism by her sister-in-law and decided to join our club in 1991. Anne held the office of Club Secretary for a while and was an active member of the Programme Action Committee until she passed away on 6th September. Her knitting skills for blankets and the contents of the Story Sacks and her enjoyment of being chief washer up were much appreciated. Anne was also a regular attender at our Regional meetings.

She valued the friendships made within the Club and enjoyed chatting to others.

Following a house move she became a member of the SI Morecambe and Heysham club but subsequently transferred back to SI Lancaster

Anne will be greatly missed by her family, friends, and Soroptimist sisters.

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