We were all so pleased to see Rose Peaty honoured with the  British Empire Medal in the 2016 New Year honours list and all devastated by her recent death. Following the funeral at All Saints Church, Blakeney on Wednesday June 15, Rose was laid to rest in her beloved village, at the  Blakeney Cemetery, after the service. Everyone will miss her and her valiant  and unceasing services for everyone in the community, disabled or healthy, young  or  old.

Rose Peaty was a true Forester born and bred in the tough times of WW2. She always loved the Forest of Dean and especially her home patch around Blakeney, an ancient village on the A48 between Gloucester and Chepstow. After education until 15 at Blakeney School and volunteering at the local Lydney Hospital she went to the Gloucester Technical College (Brunswick Road) continuing to work part-time at Lydney as a nursing aide. In her twenties, after she qualified as a nurse, she moved to The Poole General Hospital in Dorset, staying with the nursing team for 27 years, before returning to Blakeney in 1985.
Already a committed Baptist from her teenage years Rose's first community project was to support refurbishment of the local  Baptist Chapel and develop the Chapel as a base to support youth work and develop a  'Drop-in' work skills programme,  helping many local youngsters, have a go at real music! AND improve their qualifications and find employment …. As a result of her community work to help local children, successive generations of children & adults in Blakeney knew her as 'Aunty Rose'.
In 2009 she co-founded the Blakeney Community Green project to develop a community  all-weather path round the village green, create additional play areas for local children, establish  a community café,  build  a nature trail and provide access to 'conservation woodland'. Less than four years later all this work was completed,  in the process winning more than £100,000 funding from major donors including   Village SOS, part of the Big Lottery fund, and Gloucestershire Environmental Trust, and enlisting the services of Gloucester Wildlife Trust. Rose was also a prime mover in another successful parallel project to create the Soudley-Blakeney Gateway, a series of linked footpaths which re-establish an ancient three-mile route up the Soudley Valley.
All along Rose aimed to build support from the whole community including the local schools, local business and other smaller donors such as Mid Counties Cooperative and, in the very beginning, The Southwest Foundation.  Rose worked tirelessly in support of practical fundraising for many other local community projects and somehow also found time to re-invigorate the weekly luncheon club for the elderly, run summer games days for local children and support the annual Blakeney duck race!  The Blakeney Baptist Luncheon Club now has a membership around 60 with weekly lunches. Rose also raised funds for the Blakeney defibrillator project and more new play equipment, not to mention running the new community café for the best part of a year before handing it over recently to Gillian Higgins. She will be sadly missed by everyone.

So sad to see you go, Rose

Email  ewart.woolley@gmail.com
See the report in The Forester