William Albion John Surringer – always my Uncle Bill

This tribute was given at the funeral of my Uncle Bill Surringer. The service was held in Coychurch, Bridgend on Friday 26th April 2019 – the day my mum – Bill’s sister – would have been 96 years old.

 

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Today is my mum’s birthday. Mum passed away just over nine years ago. She was one of three children. Doris, her elder sister, my mum Phyllis and their younger brother Bill. They were three incredible people, my Nanna Surringer did such a wonderful job bringing them up to be the people they were.

 

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Bill Surringer was the most wonderful man! He was kind, thoughtful and was never one to complain, whatever life threw at him. He was one of the most positive people I have ever met. We are here this afternoon to celebrate his wonderful life.

Bill was a man who loved and was loved, by his family, his circle of friends and indeed all who knew him.

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I said at Doris’s funeral…. ‘We have come together this afternoon to thank God for the life of a remarkable lady, Doris Catherine Wilson, but to me always my aunty Doris, the best storyteller I ever knew!!’ I’ll tell you Bill must be the joint holder of that title!

I said in a recent Facebook post that If chatting, telling stories and genuinely being kind was an Olympic competition, my Uncle Bill would win gold every single year!

We come together today not just to mourn his passing but more importantly to celebrate his life.

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Bill left us, tragically, on 11thApril and we are here because of his influence on our lives.  For Beryl, Lorraine and Linda and your wonderful families – your lives were intertwined with his for many years. For others of us who are here, our lives crossed Bill’s at different times and different contexts in the course of time.  No matter what our connection with Bill, all of our lives have been touched by his.  We are all a part of the wonderful legacy he leaves behind. Death robs us of much – never again will we have Uncle Bill with us, no longer hear his voice, see his smile – no more of his wonderful sense of humour.

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Wonder how you will deal with it?  God gave us something to help – a great and wonderful gift…  The gift of memory – a powerful capacity to remember.

Bill married Beryl in St Paul’s Church and Grangetown. Their love grew so strong over the years they were together.

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I have many memories of this wonderful man. I first knew of him as my uncle, who lived in the front room of my Nan’s house in 201, Penarth Road – one of my favourite places in the world!

They had a strange little kitchen built into that front room. He would often pop into my Nan’s room and feel the pipes leading from the fire to see if it was hot enough for his bath on a Saturday night! He helped me buy my first car – an old split screen Morris Minor and he would often end up doing odd jobs on many of my other cars. John, my brother was always envious of Bill and his Baines Bike. – the Rolls Royce of bikes in those days. I was always fascinated by the fact he had the same name as the football team he played for.

Whatever he worked at he excelled! He was a superb panel beater – a real craftsman, as a car park attendant at the City Hall he was so inspirational, he ended up being the Lord Mayor of Cardiff’s personal attendant.

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He loved Cardiff with a passion and got to meet a host of important people and everyone he spoke to would have been captivated by his enthusiasm.

He only loved one thing more than his beloved City and that was his family! You were his life!

Remember him as your father, father in law, grandfather, uncle and as your friend.

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Talk about him often. Talk about him with each other and keep his memory alive

Remember the love that he had for you all, his willingness to always work hard in order to provide for his family.

The separateness and uniqueness of each human life is the basis of our grief in bereavement. We could look through the whole world and we would find there is no one like Bill.

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He still lives on in our memories. Though no longer a visible part of our lives, he will always remain a member of our family… he will always be our friend, through the influence he has had on you and the special part he played in your lives.

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Our biggest gift to him now is to be thankful that he is at peace and to seek to be as strong and courageous in our loss as he was in throughout his life. We must also, in memory of Doris, Phyllis and Bill promise to remain close as a family and treasure what has been passed down and entrusted to us! You must have no regrets – as his close family you have been so very kind to your precious father and grandfather. Well done and thank you.56781115_10161458534525391_5471031527506706432_n

I want to thank Bill for all that he gave to us in his long and loving life. 
Let’s all make sure that the good he showed to us; we will show to others.

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Bill Surringer – a man whose life made the world a better place.

 

Below is a copy of the poem Bill wrote – powerful words, which show us what kind of man he was.

Life

Life racing along at breakneck speed,

No time to play, no time to read

Workdays merge… work to bed..

And all to earn our daily bread.

 

Little money left to fulfil our dreams,

What are they? I could write reams,

A reliable car, holidays abroad in the sun?

A meal in a bistro, when day is done?

Lazing on a sun soaked beach?

That I’m afraid is out of our reach.

However, things are not all that bad

Experiences shared since I was a lad.

A good marriage and two children fine.

Always food on the table, when I sit to dine.

Satisfaction from a  job well done.

These have to be my day in the sun.

Now, many years have passed

Our next will be our last!

No money worries now, enough to pay the bills

Holidays abroad? We have had our fill.

To sit in our garden and remember our lives past,

And a glass of wine with our meal.

Bill Surringer

 

 

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Just Max and me – Adventures Day 9 – Techniquest.

Max looked tired when he arrived this morning. He still had the lines of his pillows imprinted on his cheeks. He still smiled and we took a long time to gently prepare him for the day!

Max ate 3 Weetabix for breakfast! He ate slowly, enjoying it and watching the wood burner glowing in the fireplace.We had our adventure planned already – a day at Techniquest.

techniquestWe had our adventure planned already – a day at Techniquest.

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Each month this exciting Science Exhibition in Cardiff holds a Toddler Day. They call it Snowflakes and Sparkles – although I wasn’t expecting to see either.

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We also received the good news that Max’s cousin Eli was also coming down, that would be great fun.

Max got dressed and prepared for the day. We set off just before ten for the short journey down to Cardiff Bay.

Techniquest first opened on 13 November 1986 on the site of the old British Gas showroom on the corner of Duke Street and St John Street in Cardiff Town Centre. There were 48 exhibits at that time, many of them were designed and built by Techniquest. The former showroom housed the centre for around nine months. Less than seven weeks after it had opened Techniquest had welcomed its ten thousandth visitor.

In 1988 Techniquest re-opened in a pre-fabricated building opposite the now demolished Welsh Industrial and Maritime Museum in Bute Street. The two buildings were removed to make way for Mermaid Quay.

They moved again in 1995 about 100 metres along Stuart Street to its present location on the site of the former Baileys engineering workshop which is now its permanent headquarters. The building, the UK’s first purpose-built science discovery centre, opened on 1 May 1995. It uses the steel framework of the original building which can be clearly seen on the photograph.

We parked up and waited for Eli to arrive.

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Kids are free on Toddler Day. I asked for one OAP ticket but was rebuffed and told that all tickets were cheaper today, so I duly paid my £5.80, put on my wrist band and in we went.

Max absolutely loved it and so did Max. Every exhibit brought new delights.

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It was an effort to drag Max from one to another, he cried when we moved on but squealed with delight when he saw what was next it was truly wonderful.

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We did stop at one place so Max could have a tattoo done. Unusually, he sat quietly while it was being done. In all fairness the young man who was doing it was really gentle and kind. Max was fascinated!

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On our way round, we met several friends. Bibby was there with Oliver and Clive and Beatty French were on Grandparenting duty with their little ones.

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We had a great chat.

We even met with old Father Christmas…

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We moved on and made our way upstairs to see even greater delights….

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These two had no body to play with!!!!

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Max and Eli are such lovely friends as well as cousins….

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We even let the boys make a bauble for the Christmas Tree!!!

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It really was a day filled with wonder…. and one of the greatest wonders of all…..

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Beautiful Elsie Joy….

On the way out, Max even sat still to have a reindeer painted on his face.

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Great stuff.

 

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Just Max and me… Adventures Day 5 – The missing shoe!

As usual I was looking forward to Max’s arrival long before he came.  His smile was visible from the car as his mum pulled up. It was a clear but chilly morning, with just the smallest hint that the first frost of the Autumn was not too far away.

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I had a roaring fire ready and Max and I soon settled down to have our early morning cuddle and watch a few trains on YouTube.We followed this by listening again to the Scallywags CD. It’s great, so full of nursery rhymes and Bethesda songs. Max still likes Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star and If you’re happy and you know it the best He was trying a few of the actions himself! We had fun.

We followed this with breakfast then began to prepare for todays’ adventure.

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I had decided we would visit Bridgend not a place noted for its visitor attractions, but I had worked out we could go to Bridgend from Eastbrook, via Cardiff, Pontyclun,  Llanharan and Pencoed and return by the direct route through the Vale of Glamorgan via Llantwit Major and Rhoose.Screenshot 2018-10-24 01.16.13

I have never travelled via Llanharan before and thought that would be rather exciting! We had planned this some weeks ago but never went on it due to a late change of plan. The great thing about this plan is that we leave and arrive on the platform nearest to our house and avoid the need to cross the horrible iron bridge. I understand they are thinking of fitting a lift each side of the tracks to avoid the stairs. Bring it on – crossing that bridge with a pushchair is an absolute NIGHTMARE!!

We caught the 09:58 to Cardiff and I just had time to buy my ticket from the machine on the platform – despite Max having a brief ‘paddy’ because he wanted to press the buttons! I got on the platform just as the train arrived. Perfect.

I got Max out of the pushchair as soon as I could. Trains have windows and windows are meant to be looked out of and Max and I love looking out of train windows. I always remember the old poem I learnt in Junior School…

Faster than fairies, faster than witches,
Bridges and houses, hedges and ditches;
And charging along like troops in a battle
All through the meadows the horses and cattle:
All of the sights of the hill and the plain
Fly as thick as driving rain;
And ever again, in the wink of an eye,
Painted stations whistle by.
Here is a child who clambers and scrambles,
All by himself and gathering brambles;
Here is a tramp who stands and gazes;
And here is the green for stringing the daisies!
Here is a cart runaway in the road
Lumping along with man and load;
And here is a mill, and there is a river:
Each a glimpse and gone forever!

Robert Louis Stephenson

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The journey into Cardiff is a quick ten minute one but still enough to see lots of interest. Halfway there, I looked in horror at Max – he had a shoe missing and they were his new best ones. I remembered the little paddy at Eastbrook. I searched the floor of the train with one hand while making sure Max didn’t climb up onto the table with the other!

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The shoe was nowhere to be seen. This would cause me problems if Max had to walk anywhere which he likes to do.

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At Cardiff we had to change to platform 3 to pick up the train heading for Maesteg. We must go there one day. The train was waiting, and it was a curious one!

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It was a single carriage train that looked like a shuttle. Max approved, and we got on and found a seat with a table. – always essential. We had to leave to the pushchair at the other end of the train but that was fine.

Before long we pulled out and travelled down the main line towards Swansea. We passed Canton, Ely Woods and Saint Fagan’s and the train was going at a fair old pace. I kept looking at Max’s sock and wondered how I could break the news to his dad and mum later. I felt I was in trouble.

Despite it not being a new line, it was great stopping at stations I had never visited, Pontyclun, Llanharan and Pencoed. Quite a few people got on. Maybe Bridgend has improved since I visited with Alfie!

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Max loved the journey and was constantly pointing things out or waving to the people on the stations.

After a 45-minute journey, we arrived in Bridgend in the bright morning sunshine.

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Trip Advisor describes Bridgend like this…

A sleepy little market town nestled at the foothills of the valleys or a bustling shoppers paradise halfway between Cardiff and Swansea?   Bridgend is all that and more. A county town, rich in heritage and history, where zealous pilgrims cautiously waded the fast-flowing river en route to the shrine of St. David in Pembrokeshire.

In medieval times the Pilgrims would sensibly stop off here for shelter and refreshments, while the monks from the nearby Abbey would wash their sore dusty feet. A little hump backed bridge built in 1425, linking the north and south banks of the river and the two sections of the quaint old town now stand on the spot.

The main centre of Bridgend lies on the north bank of the river and is a shopper’s paradise of old and new, happily winding its way through narrow streets, co-existing side by side. The old Victorian market hall has since gone, but the original 127-year-old market bell still hands in the Rhiw shopping centre, near to the entrance of the new covered market. Small local specialist businesses complimented by large national chain stores make the town a perfect day out.

I’m not sure who wrote that, but I tell you they are masters of fiction. Amazingly there is a list of the Top 17 things to do in Bridgend and not a single one is actually in Bridgend. One of the things is the Showcase Cinema complex in Nantgarw which must be 20 miles away.

Actually, it’s not a bad little town especially for a smiling little lad and his fat little grandfather who love to go adventuring together.

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First stop was breakfast – the second one of the day and no finer place than Greggs. I had a bacon and sausage bap and a cup of coffee, which cost me the princely sum of £2 and Max went for a Yum-Yum. A long curly doughnut, which he loved. He ate every single bit of it! While we were in the queue a kind lady informed me that Max had lost a shoe. I thanked her politely and explained what had happened and that feeling of dread returned. Was I in trouble? The wet wipes returned Max’s face, hands and coat to something resembling smartness and we set off.

Within a few minutes Max was asleep.

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The early mornings seem to tire him out and the pushchair is very comfortable. I toured the multitude of charity shops, but found no bargains at all, which was very disappointing – Rhiwbina and Cowbridge remain my favourite places for a charity shop – posh areas. In almost every shop, someone either tapped me on the shoulder or waved and told me my little boy had lost his shoe. Oh dear… I am in trouble!!  Max slept on…

I came across the Bridgend war memorial, which I always find interesting. This year is a very special year, one hundred years since the end of World War One. While I studied it, Max slept on.

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Next, I came across the market, which was actually quite good. I love the atmosphere of an indoor market. Bridgend didn’t disappoint. Passing the delicatessen, the cheery shop owner shouted, ‘Hey mate…your little ones lost his shoe.’ I thanked him and that feeling of dread returned. Max missed the market…he slept on.

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It was soon time to head back to the station. The chill of the morning had changed into a most lovely, warm autumn day. Pushing my precious cargo through this little Welsh town was so lovely.

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When we got to the station the rather large lady who was monitoring the entrance gates asked me if I knew that my little boy had lost a shoe. I thanked her and carried on worrying.

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The station has recently had a new footbridge and looked rather smart. It’s a great little station, because its on the main line. As I sat and waited for my train, one on the new main line express trains pulled in on its way to London. They are ‘hybrid’ trains. Apparently when the electrification of the lines starts soon, they will be quiet electric trains from London to Cardiff but as they leave Cardiff towards Swansea, they will revert to being diesel trains. Brilliant… can’t wait.DSC01468

Max slept on.

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The return journey was along the Vale of Glamorgan line via, Llantwit Major and Rhoose. It was reopened in 2005. Rail campaigners were delighted in June of that year, when a passenger rail service came back to the Vale of Glamorgan for the first time in 41 years.Regular services now run between Bridgend and Barry and then along existing track into Cardiff.

The final work was completed in the summer of 2005 to allow 18 miles of the Vale of Glamorgan line to reopen to passenger trains.The Welsh Assembly supported the £17million project and the line was officially opened by Transport Minister Andrew Davies.A shuttle bus waits for every train and runs to the airport terminal, seven minutes away.
Freight trains continued to travel to Aberthaw power station and Ford’s motor plant near Bridgend after regular passenger services were withdrawn in 1964.
The line was also used for diversions when there was work on the Great Western main line, west of Cardiff.

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It’s a glorious line, especially with the trees in their autumnal beauty. The jewel in the crown of the journey is the crossing of the Porthkerry Viaduct.

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When the ticket collector came around – a cheery chap with glasses and tousled hair – he kindly asked me if I had my little boy’s shoe. Max missed the entire journey as he slept on. I was glad he trusted me to look after him.

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Keep following the blue dot!

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We got off at Eastbrook Station and I was met by the most glorious sight…

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Max’s missing shoe was there, near the ticket machine. Some kind person had put it safe in a place where I could see it! Whoever you are… a massive thank you.

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Max woke up as we got home, and he enjoyed a rather late lunch and we watched some Thomas the Tank Engine and played for a little while until dad arrived and our beautiful time together came to an end. I think Max wanted to stay a bit longer and to be honest I wanted him to stay a bit longer, just Max and me… but with two shoes on he waved goodbye, smiled and went to collect his big brother!

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Just Max and me… Adventures Day 2

On the way home from school on Thursday Alfie asked me, “is Grandma still at your house?”

No sooner had he said it, he realised his mistake and after hitting his head a few times with a clenched fist he corrected himself. ‘Is Margaret at your house?” he said giggling.

 

Max arrived a little later than usual. His mum was taking Alfie to Breakfast Club – a real treat for them both. When I opened the door I didn’t know what to expect as Poor max had been unwell earlier in the week with his new teeth and various minor infections. I was met with the biggest smile ever and I knew my little friend was better and looking forward to one of our Friday specials, Just Max and me. However today was going to be slightly different. Today was going to be Just Max and me and Margaret.

Margaret is my friend. We met by accident 26 years ago nearly when I paid a trip to Northern France to sing with a group of young people.  It’s been a lovely friendship based on mutual respect and a desire to support each other. Margaret teaches English to Senior Citizens in France and also tries to share her Christian love with all she meets. She has dedicated her life to serving others.

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Max spent the first couple of hours having his breakfast, playing and watching train videos – his absolute favourite pastime. Watching steam train videos is a mark of great parenting (and grandparenting) skills!

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After breakfast we had a game of ‘Hide the Remote Control’. I am beginning to get to now some of Max’s favourite places to hide it!

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We had already decided to head for Barry Island, it was a glorious day late in September – too nice to stay at home. However Max looked a little tired and so we decided he would catch a later train after he had chance to nap. He certainly didn’t want to sleep all the way around Barry Island.

 

The yapping dog woke Max and we prepared to set off. It was something of a motley crew Max , Margaret and me!

Going to Barry on the train is wonderful but for a young lad in a pushchair it has a nightmare beginning. We have to negotiate the iron bridge over to the Barry Island Platform or Platform 2 as the lady robot announcer calls it.

So, pushchair under one arm and the other holding Max’s left hand and Margaret holding Max’s right hand we set off.

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The train arrived on schedule and as Max saw the oncoming train he was visibly shaking with the greatest excitement. Unprompted, he waved frantically at the driver who waved frantically back and even gave him a personal toot on the train horn.DSC01369

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Max was very anxious to leave the confines of the pushchair and sat excitedly by the window. He just loved the train journey, down through Dinas Powys, across the moors, through Cadoxton and the various Barry Stations. As we slowed down Max waved to every single passenger waiting on every single station.

When the guard came around I had a moment of panic! In my rush to make sure I had everything, I realised I had left the very thing I needed most at home – not Max or Margaret but my wallet. I searched every pocket three times at least as she inched her way towards me. A big smile and a cheery ‘Tickets please’ gave me hope. I asked her if I could pay with my phone and after she confirmed that I could all was well. I gave all my fellow passengers a look of disbelief and told them I had no idea how it works but was grateful that it did. They all smiled and looked at the two ‘old dears’ and the smiling little lad!

As we were heading towards Cadoxton, Margaret must have been thinking and she asked me if Alfie ever still called her grandma. I smiled and told her what Alfie had said to me just the day before! I think she liked that.

She replied, “Well, he’s the nearest I will ever get to be anyone’s grandma!”

I had a moment of sadness in my happy day. Margaret would have made a lovely ‘grandma’ – she has so many talents that she could have shared with them. Mia used to love and sit and watch Margaret knitting and they would often spend hours together.

As the train past the Docks Building I explained to Margaret what an wonderful building it was.

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Barry docks office building

The Dock Offices at Barry cost £59,000 to build. Constructed of red brick and Portland stone, a clock tower was added at an additional cost of £6,000. It has a ‘theme’ of the calendar. There are four floors – the seasons of the year; seven lights in the traceried fanlight window – days of the week. The porch has twelve panels – months of the year.
Within the building are 52 marble fireplaces – weeks of the year. The windows number 365 days, one for each day of the year. Each window has four panes of glass – weeks to a month. In the east and west walls of the entrance hall are two circular windows – Sun and Moon. The staircase, made of Portland stone, has 31 steps (days of the month) from ground to first and second floors and has an ornamental ironwork balustrade with circular foliage and fruit trails.

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We pulled into Barry Island spot on time and made our way off the station. I looked at the lovely old building and remembered many happy visits here in the 1950s, when I arrived on a proper steam train and Barry Island had a proper station. How good it would be if the new franchise did up these great old places.

 

I spent many happy hours in Barry Island as a child. My mum and dad would take us on the train from Llanishen Station to Barry Island on a regular basis. Most of the journeys were on steam trains. Unforgettable bliss!

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On the way, we would hold our breath after Grangetown Station, as the train would take one of two routes as it approached Penarth. The short way was via Cogan, Dinas Powys and Cadoxton and on to Barry, but the long way, which always brought groans from us kids, was through Penarth via Dingle Road, Alberta Place Halt, Swanbridge, Lavernock and Sully, before joining the main line near Cadoxton. I would give my right arm to be able to travel that line again on a steam train. Sadly houses have been built on the track bed in some places and so that dream will never become a reality and I will never have to learn to write with my left hand!! A few years ago I did walk the old line from Biglis Roundabout to Penarth Station. I had to sneak through a garden near Lavernock but an amazing amount of track bed is still left.

The journey home would be made smelling of calamine lotion as we always got sunburnt and spent two days in agony every time. No sun cream or after sun gel in those days!

Max loves to ride in the pushchair and look out at all the interesting things there is to see. We had to walk around the fairground, now closed until next summer and headed towards the beach, It was glorious. Max was so happy. After crossing the road Max got out to walk and investigate everything. He’s just at that age where he wants to look into everything and find out about things.

 

We walked down towards the beach and stood by  Number 4 on the sea wall, the scene of many beach missions with my old buddies Mick and Clive. Max was desperate for the beach, but I wasn’t ready for shoes full of sand – some other time my little friend.

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As we walked away from the beach I saw Margaret heading towards the local gym. I noticed she had worn her trainers and was thinking maybe she was after completing a couple of circuits….

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We headed for Whitmore and Jackson’s, Max needed his lunch and Margaret and I were about to share a cream tea, Doug and Joy’s Christmas present to her from last year! It was delicious.

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Max negotiated his way through his lunch, insisting he ate both yoghurts all on his own – he did a great job!  Some of his jam sandwich fingers ended up with one side on the floor but he enjoyed it all. He certainly has a great appetite.

We were having such a lovely time that we decided to catch a later train home, which we did.

With some spare time I was able to tell Max and Margaret about the old tunnel that once ran between Barry Island Station  and the little dock station. At one time you could get a train right to where the Paddle Steamers left for Weston and Minehead. I would loved to have travelled on that little stretch.

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We had another bout of Max shaking with excitement as the train crawled around the sharp bend into Barry  Island Station for our trip home. Amazingly Max had another wave from the driver and another special toot from the horn. Max needs no prompting he just waves madly himself. Even I get the urge to wave at a train driver!! Why is that?

Max loved to journey home, no signs of tiredness.  It was a great day – such fun and such good company – Just Max and me…and Margaret! Looking forward to next Friday before this Friday has finished!

 

He was met by  his brother Alfie who was looking for someone to be a Robin for his Batman.

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Happy Days!

 

 

Just Max and me. Adventures Day 1

A boy’s story is the best that is ever told. – Charles DickensDSC01166

I cannot believe it was six years ago that I was first entrusted with my grandson Alfie, while his parents were at work. I loved it and created Adventures with Alfie, chronicling the fun times we had together. He will soon be at an age where he can read the accounts for himself – I hope he loves them.

History is about to repeat itself and every Friday for the next few months it will be ‘Just Max and me’.  This will be fun!

Max, like Alfie, is something special. He was born to parents who were at one time told that they had ‘little or no chance of ever conceiving and raising children’. God had other ideas and Alfie came first and then Max made a surprise but very welcome appearance. He is eighteen months old now and a real ‘character’. He is happy, loving and possesses a smile that reminds me of a sunrise on a beautiful summer day. At this age he wants to know everything about everything, pick up everything within reach – the breakable ones interesting him most and several things have to be moved to safer places before his arrival.

 

I love him.

The Blue Fairy once told Pinocchio, ‘Prove yourself brave, truthful, and unselfish, and someday, you will be a real boy. I hope that the times we spend together, just Max and me, will help him along that road.I always try and remember that a real boy is the only thing that God can use to make a real man.

Max arrived early with his mum and brother, we had breakfast together with his cousins before walking to school. I love those days.

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In the school yard we met up with another Max – someone who is so famous his name is on every cooker and record player in the world – so he says!!

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After the drop offs and kisses Max, and I walked to the shops before heading across to visit Eli and Elsie. We were greeted by a yapping Mash who welcomed us in!

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Max and Eli had a great time playing together with the trains and Eli’s wigwam.

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After a while we headed home, as we were going into Cardiff to give Max some valuable lessons on the place of his birth.

Before we went Max had time for a  little relax, a quick drink

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and then I taught him all about the biscuit tin!

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After his quick snack, he walked into the children’s room, patted the television saying ‘Cho choo!” He spent the next half hour glued to a YouTube video of the best steam trains of 2016 and 2015. Epic stuff! We sat together for most of that time, just Max and me.

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I’ve worked out now that the best way into and out of Cardiff with a pushchair is train in and bus out. Catching the 95 bus into town is something of a lottery because if there is already a pushchair on board, having a second one can cause a bit of a fuss. It’s possible you would have to let the bus go without you if it’s full. Coming home the 304 bus from Custom House Street always has space as that is the terminus and you can get in the pushchair space nice and early.

Max enjoyed the train ride in, but between the Central Station and Queen Street Station he dozed off. Not good! He was going to miss some valuable lessons. Getting off at Queen Street made me remember what a great station it used to be. Now it’s a soul-less piece on concrete. Years ago it had class and atmosphere, but in their wisdom the city planners pulled it down. That was an act of Social Vandalism.

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We got off and made our way along Queen Street and popped into a few shops. Max slept on…

Lunchtime was approaching and I had hoped we would eat together but as I was passing Greggs, the pushchair developed a fault and violently swerved to the left. I felt compelled to stop and sample some of Greggs finest wares, giving the pushchair a chance to correct itself.

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I had a Steak slice and a carton of fresh soup – chicken, butternut squash and greens. It was exquisite! The soup had a slight ‘aromatic’ taste which was beautiful and anyone who has ever eaten a Gregg’s Steak Slice will know it’s the nearest thing to heaven this side of the veil. Max slept on.

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We then made our way to the market so I could show Max Ashton’s Fish counter and the butchers in the far left hand corner of the market hall. Both are legendary places in my humble opinion. Every child should spend as much time as possible looking and learning and being fascinated by these great shops.

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Max slept on…

Had he been awake I would have shown him the pigs’ heads, the ox hearts and the sheep testicles, as well as the massive beef bones. This butcher wastes not a thing. One day I must try cow cheeks he has on sale, although my days of eating tongue have sadly passed. Growing up we often had all kinds of strange meat – liver, stuffed hearts and rabbit, but I only ever saw my dad eat brains once – only ever once!! I can’t think why!

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As we were leaving the market  the little man stirred and a street musician nearby playing loudly helped him wake up. But the timing was good, we were nearing Howells, where I had planned to take lunch.

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If you know Howells you will know the second floor restaurant which has a wonderful play area for the kids. Sadly the shop’s days are numbered, Howells will soon become block of apartments and this historic building will no longer be  a part of the lives of Cardiffians as it has been for generations. (I hope they save the church hidden with its walls!)

We made our way to the second floor where Max enjoyed the lovely lunch his dad and mum had prepared. While the rest of the shop appeared empty the restaurant area was quite full of young mums and some families all with at least one little person with them. It was so lovely. We made a rather an inglorious entrance. I found a place quite near the counter, collected a high chair for Max, but as I lifted him out of the pushchair, the weight of his bags made the pushchair tip backwards and as it did it knocked a chair over which made a terrible racket! For a few brief seconds chaos reigned. All eyes turned to see what was happening with this little old fat chap with the cute little boy. I think I got away with a shrug of the shoulders and a roll of the eyes.

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Max enjoyed his lunch immensely, but kept looking over his shoulder at the other little kids playing quietly. He obviously wanted to get down with them, which he eventually did. He was great and played quietly with the others and when it was time, he sat quietly back in his pushchair as we made our way to catch the two o’clock 304 bus back home.

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It was the bus journey home that in many ways was the highlight of the day. We got on and parked the pushchair and immediately Max wanted to get out. Was this the best course of action for a one year old on a bus ride home? Absolutely!

Max loved it! He loved looking out of the window and waving at anyone who passed.

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He stood up on he seat and waved at all the other passengers on the bus and all the passengers on the bus waved back. His smile lit up the whole place. He then proceeded to play ‘peek-a-boo’ with the middle aged couple in the seat behind. He would duck down behind the seat and look up at them between the handle. It was so cute! He had a fit of the giggles, which lasted much of the way home. Most of the bus waved to him as we got off.

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When we got home he walked straight into the children’s room patted the television and said ‘Choo-choo!’ I sat on the settee, patted the settee beside me and my little friend came and sat quietly beside me.

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Dad arrived soon after and Max was bundled into the van to pick up his big brother.

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It was such a lovely day, I’m sixty five and half years older than him, but we had such a special time…

Just Max and me.

 

 

The Old Bear

(For Jemima)

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Chapter 1

The old bear 

Day after day, month after month year after year the old bear sat in the cupboard at the top of the stairs. He shared the cupboard with some other old bears and some old ornaments. The shelf he sat on was a bit like an old people’s home for bears.

They just sat there… all day… every day. They had run out of things to say many years ago, but they liked each other’s company. Most days were the same. They all just sat on the shelf in the cupboard at the top of the stairs.

The old man and his wife, who lived in the house, would often walk past the cupboard, but these days they hardly ever stopped to look in and say hello.

Some days, and these were the days the old bear liked best, some children came to visit and the house was filled with lots of giggling and laughing and the young ones would run past the cupboard playing their childhood games of hide and seek or making dens from loads of blankets and pillows. The old bear loved the sound of the children’s laughter and excited voices, but he was sad that the children never stopped to look in to see him sitting on the shelf in the cupboard on top of the stairs.

The old bear loved company. He was created – bears are not born, they are created – a very long time ago, when the old man who owned him was a very little baby. He was a Christmas present. The old bear loved being a Christmas present, it made him feel special. The old bear was indeed a very special bear. His owner had loved him very, very much for many, many years.  All his beautiful fur had been ‘loved’ off. He no longer looked as beautiful as he used to, but he was still a very special old bear. He had been taken to bed for many years, he had been taken on holiday, he had been played with and thrown about but he always knew that he was loved.

But, there was one thing, one very big thing, that made the old bear very sad. It wasn’t that his fur had all been ‘loved’ off, that was a special thing and sitting with his friends on the shelf in the cupboard at the top of the stairs kept him warm, even in the winter. Neither was it the fact that the old bear had never been given a name. He often used to think about what name he would like to be called, but usually he was happy just to be called the old bear.

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It wasn’t even the fact that his music box had been removed. That had happened many years before and the old bear could hardly remember the tune, although he did remember that the little boy’s mother used to call it Greensleeves. The old bear though that Greensleeves was a silly name for a piece of music, although he liked green things usually!

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Nor was it even the fact that he had lost one leg. It was very painful when it happened, but that too, was a long time ago.

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What made the old bear really, really sad was that he could not see. When he was created, he had two bright shiny eyes made of glass. He loved to look at the face of his owner – the little boy who had loved him so much – he loved to look at all the other toys in the bedroom. Sometimes the little boy would take him outside into the garden and then the old bear would love to look at the beautiful blue sky and clouds, the birds flying in the sky and the lovely things around him, the flowers and vegetables that the little boy’s father used to grow in his garden.

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But now, the old bear didn’t have any eyes. He could no longer see. He lived in a world of darkness. If you close your eyes and look around that’s just what it was like for the old bear.

He lost his eyes a long time ago. While he was sitting on his shelf he would try to remember what the little boy who loved him was like.

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He knew the little boy was now an old man and he wondered if he still had the same face. He would feel his fur and remember how soft and fluffy he used to be and he worried, nearly every day, that now he looked a bit scruffy that he wouldn’t be loved so much.

But one glorious day, one very happy day, something happened. It was a day that the old bear would never forget.

It was Christmas Day, quite early in the morning and the old man opened the door of the cupboard at the top of the stairs and took him out. He was held for a while and although the old bear could not see, he felt sure the old man had a smile on his face and looked at him with a lot of love.

He was put into a bag and he hoped he was being taken somewhere very special. After a lot of moving around, the old bear was placed on the floor in the same bag. The old bear had no idea where he was, but he could hear people, a lot of people, all laughing and wishing each other a “Happy Christmas’. Then he heard some songs being sung. Soon after, he heard the voice of the old man talking. He was telling the people about the best Christmas present he had ever had and suddenly he picked the bag up and the old bear was taken out and held up. Was this true? Was he – the old bear – the best Christmas present ever? Even though he had no eyes, he felt a little tear trickle down his left cheek. He felt so happy.

If the old bear had still had his eyes, he would have noticed small girl, who was sitting, watching. This little girl had the face of an angel and her eyes were wide open as she looked at the scruffy old bear. Going through her mind was a special plan… a very special plan indeed.

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Chapter 2

The old bear finds a new friend

Big Bear

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Hello, I am Big Bear.

I don’t know what my real name is – my previous owner couldn’t look after me anymore and I got sold. Lots of people don’t like me very much because I am quite a big bear. Also, I am not very cuddly! My stuffing is hard and when children press my tummy they nearly always say, ’This big bear is very hard!’

I don’t know why my stuffing is hard, I think its because I am very old.  I wish I had soft stuffing. I wish I was a cuddly bear. Having hard stuffing means I am very good at sitting up on my own. I am also very good at turning my head. I have special fittings on my neck and on my arms and legs. I am very proud of them.

I also like my eyes. They are made out of glass.

I am  old. Most of my fur has been loved off and so have the pads on my hands and feet. My previous owner tried to fix me but she did not do a very good job.

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I was very excited today because I found a new owner. He was old like me and he had a kind face. He bought me and paid a lot of money. I hope this means that he will love me. I liked him straight away. I especially like it when he said he lived with a lady who loved toys and always cared for them really well. I hope she can wash my dirty clothes and fix the pads on my hands and feet.

IMG_1136I was also excited because my new owner told me that he had some grandchildren who loved to play with bears. I love playing with children. While I was waiting for a new home the people put me up on a shelf.

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I don’t like sitting on shelves very much. I enjoy being with children and other toys.

When I went to my new owner I was put in a big bag. I was very nervous and I was very excited all at the same time. My new owner took me out of the bag and told me that he was going to take me home.

IMG_1128He was very kind and gentle. To keep me safe he put me in a car seat. It was the car seat he uses for his grandchildren, Lois, Eli and Max. I enjoyed my ride home.

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I was a little bit nervous when the car stopped outside my new house. It looked very nice indeed. It had a blue door.

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When we went in, I sat on a big bench by the door. It was very comfortable indeed. Just then a little dog came running up to see me. My new owner called her Belle, it was a nice name for a dog. The little dog and I soon became friends and Belle let me put my arm around her. I think we are going to be friends.

IMG_6316I like my new home and I am excited to meet the lady who will care for me and the grandchildren who will play with me.

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I love playing.

A Thanksgiving Service for the wonderful life of Beatrice Elsie Musgrove.

A Thanksgiving Service for the wonderful life of

Beatrice Elsie Musgrove.

Monday 24th November 2014 at Bethesda Chapel, Dinas Powys,

Vale of Glamorgan.

UK

The service was led by Roger Newberry


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Heavenly Father, We come into your presence in the name of your Son, our Saviour The Lord Jesus Christ. In all our dealings we acknowledge you as Sovereign Lord. Be with us here this morning to comfort, to guide our thoughts and to help us worship You for Your love and as we honour the memory of this wonderful lady.

Amen.

Opening thoughts

On behalf of Beat’s family, I would like to thank each one of you for being here today… and though today is a very difficult day the family do not want it to be a day of mourning but a day of celebration. Today we come to remember Beat’s life and reminisce over all the special moments that we had with her.

Beat was a lovely lady. She was kind, thoughtful and was as honest as the day is long. We haven’t come to Bethesda Chapel today because Beat has died, we have come because she lived and her life touched ours for good. We are here today to celebrate her wonderful life.

In the difficult times of life I often find that our words often fall short of what we would like them to say. But it is then that the Eternal Word of God speaks to us with peace and understanding, all we need to do is listen!

These words come from Psalm 46, Beat’s favourite Bible passage; they written many centuries ago. They may seem like ancient dusty history to many who look from a distance. But if we listen, as Beat did, the Bible speaks to us with words that can bring comfort and hope.

God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.

Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.

The Lord Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress.

As a famly we hope and pray that those of us who mourn will find comfort and strength from today as we celebrate Beat’s wonderful life.

We would do well to remember that this life is really a preparation for the Life to come, and for those of us who love God, when we have accomplished our work on Earth we are called to continue that work in a better place, where there is neither death, nor pain, nor crying.

Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints”

Ps. 116:15

That which is so dark and heart-rending to us, in this case, is precious in God’s sight—one of His children has gone home. Beat has gone – from struggles and weariness of this life into a better place.

 Gone From My Sight

 I am standing upon the seashore.

A ship at my side spreads her white sails to the morning breeze and starts for the blue ocean.

She is an object of beauty and strength.

I stand and watch her until at length, she hangs like a speck of white cloud just where the sea and sky come to mingle with each other and someone at my side says ‘She is gone.’ Gone where?

Gone from my sight, that is all. She is just as large now as when I last saw her. Her diminished size and total loss from my sight is in me, not in her.


And just at that moment, when someone at my side says she is gone, there are others who are watching her coming over their horizon and other voices take up a glad shout – There she comes!


That is what dying is – a horizon and just the limit of our sight.

Hymn – What a friend we have in Jesus

Reading: Psalm 46  –  Read by Gareth Newberry

Psalm 46 – For the director of music. Of the Sons of Korah. A song.

 

God is our refuge and strength,

an ever-present help in trouble.

Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way

and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea,

though its waters roar and foam

and the mountains quake with their surging.

There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,

the holy place where the Most High dwells.

God is within her, she will not fall;

God will help her at break of day.

Nations are in uproar, kingdoms fall;

he lifts his voice, the earth melts.

The Lord Almighty is with us;

the God of Jacob is our fortress.

Come and see what the Lord has done,

the desolations he has brought on the earth.

He makes wars cease

to the ends of the earth.

He breaks the bow and shatters the spear;

he burns the shields with fire.

He says, ‘Be still, and know that I am God;

I will be exalted among the nations,

I will be exalted in the earth.’

The Lord Almighty is with us;

the God of Jacob is our fortress.

Prayer

Heavenly father we acknowledge your presence here, and come into your presence this morning as family and friends of dear Beatie. We are here because we love her and miss her and we want to cherish our memories of her, we want to honour her life and honour her and support one another as we grieve her passing from us – a passing from life here with us to everlasting life there with you O Lord.

Father, we thank you for Beat! You formed her, you knew her, you walked with her through 91 years, and even now we have confidence that she is in your presence.

We thank you that you are a God of mercy, who promises to comfort us, particularly when we lose our loved ones, and so in these moments now, and in the weeks and months ahead, please bring comfort and mercy to us as we remember, and share fondly all that this lovely lady was to us.

In the name of Jesus our Saviour we pray.

Amen.

A poem read by Mercedes Musgrove – Death is nothing at all.

Death is nothing at all.

I have only slipped away to the next room.

I am I and you are you.

Whatever we were to each other,

That, we still are.

 

Call me by my old familiar name.

Speak to me in the easy way,

which you always used.

Put no difference into your tone.

Wear no forced air of solemnity or sorrow.

 

Laugh as we always laughed

at the little jokes we enjoyed together.

Play, smile, think of me. Pray for me.

Let my name be ever the household word

that it always was.

Let it be spoken without effect.

Without the trace of a shadow on it.

 

Life means all that it ever meant.

It is the same that it ever was.

There is absolute unbroken continuity.

Why should I be out of mind

because I am out of sight?

 

I am but waiting for you.

For an interval.

Somewhere. Very near.

Just around the corner.

All is well.

 

Nothing is past; nothing is lost. One brief moment and all will be as it was before only better, infinitely happier and forever we will all be one together with Christ.

 Henry Scott Holland

Eulogy  –  Gareth Musgrove on behalf of the family

On behalf of my brother, Rob, and sister, Jean, I would like to share some memories of my mother’s life with you today. Mum was born in November 1922 (and would have been 92 last Monday) in Cardiff where she lived with her dad George, her mother May and seven brothers and sisters.

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May, Gertrude, Ethel, William, George, Idris then Beat and soon after Grace.

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The family home for the young Bateman family was in Knowle Street, Grangetown. Bringing up eight children today would be a huge struggle, and I can barely comprehend what life in the 20’s would have been like.

It must have been devastating for the family, when, at the tender age of 42, George, Beat’s father passed away; she was only 3 years of age.

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When mum reached her teens, she watched her beloved brothers go to war and Beat being Beat, wanted to do her bit, and often told us of her desire to join the land army. However, Beat’s boss Mr. Jones, the grocer, was not going to give up his hard-working shop assistant without a fight and offered mum an extra 10 shillings a week to stay and that started a long career in the grocery trade.

My mother’s kindness and love for her nieces and nephews meant she would spend many hours helping her sister Gertie in her spare time. Gertie would often take in lodgers at home in Coldstream Terrace, Riverside and this is where Beat first met her one and only love, Joseph Ainsworth: charming, smart and stylish – a real English gentleman and in 1950 they were married.

It was only a few years later that Robert was born and then twins, my beautiful sister Jean. Jean’s twin brother, John, sadly survived only a few days after both were born premature. Mum would love to tell us how small Jean was when she was born. Holding out her hand, she’d say, “I could fit her in the palm of my hand”, as she only weighed the same as a 2 pound bag of sugar (she’s a little bit heavier today, but just as sweet). The family was complete in 1961 after I (Gareth) was born. My father had by now left the funeral director’s James Summers, where he had been highly regarded and respected and was working for Beat’s brother Idris as company secretary of Bateman’s the Welsh Grocers.

We all have fantastic memories of growing up in Waun-y-Groes Road, and can recall fondly our loving aunts and uncles, cousins and neighbours.

One memory stands out the most, and that’s of the family night-in, waiting patiently in our living room with the projector set up and ready to go; then my father would give the order for lights-out, and the cine films of that summer’s holiday – with Auntie Grace and her family or New Year’s Eve at Auntie Kitty’s – would spring into life. My Dad must have had great vision as the family films have given us hours of pleasure over the years.

I also have fond memories of music growing up, and It was only when compiling my notes for today that I realised the reason for my unbalanced music tastes: Gilbert & Sullivan for breakfast, the Beatles for lunch, ‘Hey Hey’ we’re the Monkees’ for tea, and probably the Seekers for supper.

In early 1974 our lives changed forever; and for my mother especially, when my father died. I believe the passing of my father was the start of a broken heart that just didn’t heal and would see her grieve for the rest of her life.

I know these must have been very difficult times for mum, often going without to ensure we didn’t. I can recall her cycling 5 days a week from Rhiwbina to Merthyr Road to work in the supermarket – this just typified my mother and her generation.

It’s hard to describe just how tough they made them in the 20’s, but one story springs to mind…

After a late shift working on the wines & spirit counter, mum started her bike ride home, when one of the two bags of shopping hanging from the handlebars hit the front spokes in the front wheel, and my mother was catapulted through the air. Pushing the bike and carrying the shopping for the remainder of the journey, mum arrived home with a swollen ankle. Early the next day she walked to work (probably the same distance as from Dinas Powys to Penarth sea front); and a visit to the CRI later that day, prompted by Roger & Jean, would result in an X-ray showing a broken ankle in three places, needing a steel plate. That story, I believe just proves what a resilient lady Mum really was.

After Beat retired, she would love to spend time with her brothers George and Idris, and with life-long friend Auntie Ciss.

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Some time after moving to Dinas Powys in 1997, my mum had the onset of Alzheimer’s: a horrible disease that gradually stole her most wonderful memories.

Although in the last few years mum’s health gradually worsened, I know her love for her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren remained resolute; and you could see how she enjoyed visits from her great grandchildren, Mia, Alfie, Millie and Lois.

Sadly, on the 5th November, our beautiful, caring, wonderful, loving mother slipped away peacefully at the Waverley in Penarth, surrounded by her proud family, who are confident in the knowledge that she will now spend an eternity with my father.

Solo: The Old Rugged Cross – Mr Mark Thompson

Address:

As we gather here this morning to remember the dear and precious life of Beat, I know that many of you are dealing with mixed emotions. Today our hearts are sad, but they are not sad for Beat, because she is in a far better place, but sad because we have lost a dear loved one.

But while we mourn, we must also remember, there is great joy knowing that because of the relationship that she had with God, she is already in His presence. For the Bible says in:

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“So we are always confident, knowing that while we are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord. For we walk by faith, not by sight. We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord.”

Beat was a woman of simple faith. She enjoyed life’s simple pleasures. There was nothing pretentious about her. She liked things down to earth, plain and simple. Beat did things – all kinds of things – above and beyond the call of duty. For her, real life and real living were always about others – how she could help them, care for them, and serve them. Just before her mother died she asked Beat to ‘Look after the boys!’ She did it wonderfully well.

She was born into poverty, spent much of her early life caring for her mum and then went on to live for over 40 years as a widow but never forgot the need to share her things with others, for us as a struggling young family it was the occasional fiver or some dented tins from International. For others it was a simple bar of Cadbury’s of which she seemed to have a never-ending supply.

Beat received many gracious gifts from God. Most important, of course, was the forgiveness that she received from her Saviour and His promise of eternal life. Another gift that she received from God – a gift that she used every day, was the gifts of caring and hospitality. If she knew someone needed help; Beat was there ready to do whatever needed to be done. Jean’s friend Val came to live with Jean when things got difficult at her own home.

Beat was a real Grangetown girl – and she left us a couple of weeks ago to be with her Heavenly Father and we are here because of her influence on our lives. For you Rob, Jean and Gareth your lives were intertwined with hers from the moment you were born. For others of us who are here, our lives crossed Beat’s at different occasions and in different contexts in the course of time. No matter what our connection with Beat, we will never be the same again because of the woman she was. We are all a part of the wonderful legacy she left behind. She was everybody’s friend

The Bible tells us that death is not an unforeseen accident. We read in the Old Testament book of Ecclesiastes… There is a time to die. It is not something left out of the purposes of our Creator.   It is something planned and necessary in the sight of God. God knew Beat needed rest. It is an appointed event that will come to all of us.

This morning as we mourn her passing, we can also give thanks for Beat’s life. This can be a celebration of a life well lived, a life that impacted all who knew her.

I believe life is a gift from God. God has made us and given us life. God has blessed our life and made it full of experiences, people and events. Each day we live is a blessing and a gift from above.

Beat was a person who was given to us by God. We had the privilege of knowing her and loving her and walking along the path of life with her.

In knowing Beat we have, hopefully become better people. We have stored memories and experiences. These are gifts from God.

But death robs us of much – never again will we have Beat with us, no longer will we hear her voice, see her smile – no more hugs and handshakes

Gone is the chance to tell her things you wanted to say.

Do you wonder how you will deal with it?

The best way is with the promises of the Bible.

Beat had a relationship with God that carried some wonderful promises. Some of the promises are found in John chapter 14:1-6. Let me read that portion of scripture to you.

“Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also. And where I go you know, and the way you know.” Thomas said to Him, “Lord, we do not know where You are going, and how can we know the way?” Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.

The First Promise to us is that we don’t have to fear death.

Jesus said, “Don’t let your hearts be troubled”

We are troubled when we don’t know what is going to happen when we die, but Jesus has taken the fear out of dying.

We are troubled when we view death as an end instead of a new beginning.

Beat’s life is not over, as a matter of fact, a new phase has just begun. Our earthly bodies die, however our heavenly bodies endure for all eternity.

The second promise is that Jesus prepares a place for us in Heaven.

He said, ‘I go to prepare a place for you!’

It’s a place with no more sorrow or crying.

Heaven is a place where the hurts and disappointment of this world are no more. Where the frustrations of life are replaced with unspeakable joys.

It’s a place with no more pain and a place of great beauty.

The Third Promise found in our reading is that He personally receives us.

Now I want you to picture this, the moment that Beat took her first breath in Heaven, God was right there to welcome her.

And for Beat, she experienced a love that we can’t even understand.

  • A love that forgives every failure that she had in her life.
  • A love that mends the hurts only she knew.
  • A love that understood every feeling that she had.
  • It is an unconditional love that completely satisfies the longing of her soul.

Beat knew these promises and had a faith in God.

That’s how we can come to terms with times like these, with the wonderful hope that if we share Beat’s faith we will see her again

God gave us something else to help – a great and wonderful gift

The gift of memory – a powerful capacity to remember.

Remember her…. Rob, Lyn, Boo, Gareth and Mercedes – as your wonderful mother and mother in law, Marc, David, Paul, Kate, Gareth, Bethany, Caroline, Richard, James and Sarah you can remember her as a loving gran and a wonderfully funny Nana Muz. As a family we must make sure that Emily, Ryan, Theo, Josh, Emily, Alfie, Mia and Millie will remember her as Nanna Muz – a cool great grandmother and a great role model for them and someone who taught us so much.

Talk about her often. Talk about her with each other and keep her memory alive

Always remember the love that he had for children, her family, the community…. the poor times of her childhood. Remember the fun times. The Bible tells us – there’s a time to mourn and a time to laugh. Remember her example.

Remember the times – when she pretended to be Supergran, when she imagined herself being a heavyweight boxer.

Beat had a way of drawing out the best from people….

She taught us all some valuable lessons…

  • No matter who you are or whatever hardship you face you are always able to GIVE and always able to LOVE.
  • Another lesson… never owe anybody a penny!
  • Loyalty – her devotion to her husband was inspirational and a lesson to us all.

Our biggest gift to her now is to be thankful that she is at peace and to seek to be as strong and courageous in our loss as she was in throughout her wonderful life.

She is gone.

We can shed tears that Beatie is gone
or we can smile because she has lived.

We can close our eyes and pray that she’ll come back
or we can open our eyes and see all she’s left for us to remember.

Our hearts can be empty because we can’t see her
or they can be full of the love we shared together.

We can turn our back on tomorrow and live for yesterday
or we can be happy for tomorrow because of yesterday.

We can remember her and only that she’s gone
or we can cherish her memory and let it live on.

We can cry and close our minds, be empty and turn our backs
or we can do what Beat would want:

Smile….open our eyes……love…

and go on.

May God bless her memory to us.

Hymn: How Great Thou Art.

Dear family

  • I commend to you those memories that are yours alone. The Beat that you knew was special to you as a family in ways that no one outside could know.

You have every reason to be proud of her life.

  • I commend you to the care of Almighty God and trust that you will find the strength and peace that only God can bring.

Prayer

Heavenly Father we thank you for the life of Beat – a good woman. We thank you that her life touched both her family and the community at large for good. We thank you for her simple faith. Now she is at peace and her struggles are over over, guard and watch over her we pray. Father we commend to your loving care all those who mourn and pray that in these difficult times they may grow ever more aware of your love. Strengthen and bring comfort we pray and give grace to them as they seek to understand the changes that lie ahead. Father we rejoice in the believers hope in Christ in whose name we ask these things, that the glory may go to Him. Amen

Benediction.

Now to Him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you before His glorious presence without fault and with great joy – to the only God, our Saviour be glory, majesty, power and authority through Jesus Christ our Lord Amen.

At the Graveside

On behalf of the family, I wish to thank each one of you for being here today… and though today is a very difficult day the Scriptures makes this promise:

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.

John 14:27

We have gathered together today to remember a precious life and to say goodbye one last time and celebrate the life that she enjoyed here on earth and thank God for all the precious moments and memories that we have had with her. Her life has touched so many in so many different ways.

We have also come together to bury the ashes of Ainsworth, beloved husband of Beat. Separated for 40 long years, but now resting together. We believe they are reunited in heaven never to be separated again. In doing this we recall that our bodies bear the imprint of the first creation when they were fashioned from dust; but in faith we remember, too, that by the new creation we also bear the image of Jesus who was raised to glory.

Beat has now joined Ainsworth in heaven – in the place that was prepared for her and we commend her into the loving arms of Jesus and that hope of eternal life in Christ. It is tenderly and reverently that we commit her body to the grave.

The body returns to the earth, from which our bodies came.  The spirit returns to God who gave it, waiting for the day when both spirit and body shall again be united at the coming of the Lord.

The Committal

In the light of the promises God has given us in His Word and in as much as it has pleased the Lord in His sovereign wisdom and purpose to take from us someone we have loved, we now commit her body to its final resting place to await the fulfillment of another promise of Scripture.

Brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death, so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope. For we believe that Jesus died and rose again, and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him…. And so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore encourage one another with these words.

I Thessalonians 4

Since it has pleased Almighty God in His great mercy to take to himself the soul of our dear Beatie, we commit her body to the ground – earth to earth, ashes to ashes, dust to dust in sure and certain hope of the resurrection to eternal life, through Jesus Christ our Lord, who will transform our lowly bodies, so that they will be like His glorious body.

Having committed Beatie’s body to the ground and her Spirit to Jesus we can now say: “Thank you for all you have given to us in your long and loving, life.” And we must make a promise to each other… The good Beat has shown to us during her life we must go from this graveside and show to others.

Faithful God, Lord of all creation, you desire that nothing redeemed by your Son will ever be lost, and that the just will be raised up on the last day. Comfort us today with the word of your promise as we return the ashes of our brother Ainsworth to the earth.

Grant Ainsworth and his beloved wife Beatie a place of rest and peace. Confirm us in our hope that they will be created anew on the day when you will raise them up in glory to live with you and all the saints forever and ever.

The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.

He makes me to lie down in green pastures: he leads me beside the still waters.

He restores my soul: he leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.

Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for You are with me; Your rod and staff they comfort me.

You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies: You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows.

Surely goodness and mercy will follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.

 

Let us pray.

May the peace of God, which is beyond all understanding, keep your hearts and minds in the knowledge and love of God and of his Son, our Lord Jesus Christ.
May the love of God and the peace of the Lord Jesus Christ bless and console us and gently wipe every tear from our eyes: in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

Go in the peace of Christ.