One of STAR Housing’s most beloved customers has been immortalised by a beautiful hand-made bench placed in Much Wenlock a place she loved so dearly.

The late Mary Smith was well known across Much Wenlock, she was often seen talking with neighbours, giving gardening advice or perfecting her own award winning garden. Soon after her sad passing STAR housing were more than happy to work with her family to help keep Mary at the heart of the community.

STAR Housing’s Resident Involvement Officer Simone Mansbridge who knew Mary paid this tribute “It was a pleasure to be a part of the project to put a memorial bench in Much Wenlock so that local people can sit and take a moment to enjoy an area that Mary loved so much. Mary was known to STAR for many reasons including her beautiful garden but her greatest beauty laid in her personality. She was amazing to talk to and could tell you stories that would have melted your heart and sold millions in books. She was always happy to stop and have a natter with anyone or offer her assistance with gardening, she always had a trick to brighten up your roses or strengthen your tulips. Mary regularly entered and eventually won our gardening competition and shared her skills to help with the communal flower beds in Much Wenlock.”

Mary’s famous garden was as Simone said award winning and there is no greater tribute to this lady than her reaction to winning the award “I’m very pleased I won, it’s been a pleasure to be included in this and everyone is so lovely when they come round. They all like the colours. I’m technically registered blind but I find my own way in my own time”

Her Support Worker Traci Ewen paid further tribute “Her beautiful garden was a thing to behold and brought such joy not only to her but also to her neighbours.  Despite her advanced age she came to regular weekly coffee mornings and other meetings at the community room and was loved by everyone who met her.  She had a lively and cheeky sense of humour.  All her life she had enjoyed dressing well and she always wore perfectly matched outfits.  She was full of wonderful amusing stories and an absolute pleasure to have living on the scheme” 

We here at STAR Housing are all still so saddened by Mary’s passing but we hope that this beautiful bench will help her memory live on within the community for which she was such a pillar and her family who will miss her terribly.

Tap / Click on Image to enlarge

Mary Smith in her garden