It is with great sadness that Whitchurch Town Council report that Deputy Mayor, Councillor Terry O’Neill, passed away at Whitchurch Community Hospital on 24th June 2020. Terry was admitted to Royal Shrewsbury Hospital in March 2020 and had recently been moved to Whitchurch Community Hospital.
He moved to Whitchurch in 2000 and loved the town at once and really enjoyed meeting with townspeople. He wanted to do what he could to contribute to the town and so joined Whitchurch Town Council in 2012.
Terry soon developed a passion for the town parks and became Chairman of the Parks & Public Realm Committee, overseeing all park developments. He worked hard alongside the Council’s contractors developing the Harry Richards Memorial Garden and brought in recycled benches, memorial trees and an extension to the Jubilee Park play area.
Living locally, he was in town every day and always happy to have a chat with anyone about any issues. The Council officers would joke with him that you could normally find him in his High Street office at Trevor Fowles Quality Butchers with his mug of tea!
On behalf of the Councillors and Council staff, the Mayor sends sincere condolences and prayers to Terry’s family and says he will be remembered very fondly, “Terry was a lovely, popular, thoughtful and well respected colleague and member of our community. He readily volunteered to help at every event in the town; you would find him in a Council hi-vis jacket supporting Party in the Park and staying to the end to help the final clear up. A key player with Blackberry Fair, you would see him in the parade pushing the ‘bed of plenty’ up the High Street and was on hand all day to help. He gave his time freely and was so obliging, getting involved with everything that took place, including the Food & Drink Festival, stewarding at the majority of shows, comedy events @theCivic, selling raffle tickets at the Friday Coffee mornings in the Civic and much, much more. He will be very sadly missed by his fellow Councillors, Council officers and all his many friends.”
Terry was also the Chair of Trustees at the Beechtree Community Centre because he liked to work to bring people and organisations together.
He worked closely with Penny Beddoes, Chief Officer of Beechtree Community Centre.
Penny has fond memories of working with Terry. He was a calming voice at the end of the phone or a friendly face over a cup of coffee. He was never judgemental and would quietly and patiently listen.
He worked tirelessly to raise the profile of the centre and his working relationship with staff and Trustees was full of respect, kindness and humour. He was very knowledgeable regarding how the centre staff and trustees could work together for the people of Whitchurch
He always made time for the giving of advice and was counted as a true friend not only by the Beechtree but also to its wider family. A true friend and we count it an honour to have known him.
The Council will be organising a memorial service in tribute to Deputy Mayor, Councillor Terry O’Neill’s service to his community. The date and time will be advertised in due course.