Parish of Leatherhead - Ann Brixey 1928-2009

In Memory and Thanksgiving


1st December 1928 - 23rd October 2009

And let us not be weary in well doing;
for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not:

Galatians 6 verse 9

10th November 2009

Order of Service


Hymn: Praise, my soul, the King of Heaven


Reading: Revelation 21 verses 1-6, read by Anne Warren

Canon David Eaton, formerly Vicar of Leatherhead

If you asked Ann who she thought she was you would have got a pretty full reply because she had traced her family tree back to the 18th Century. She knew that it was on the Isle of Man that her ancestors had been Iron Founders.

She herself had been born and brought up in Altrincham. Her father served in the First World War in the Lancashire Fusiliers. He had a distinguished record. He lost a leg and was awarded the DSO.

These kinds of details were important to Ann, who had a strong sense of her own history, identity and values. It was these she brought to her many interests and involvements.

She was a stalwart of the WI Country Market where she kept a watching eye over the meat counter. Country Markets provide and invaluable local service and social meeting place: a lot of local people have every reason to be thankful to Ann and many others who keep them going on a voluntary basis.

Ann was also a member of Fetcham WI; the Masons; she bowled at Dorking and Leatherhead, where she only stopped playing this year although she continued to help with the catering. She was also to be found in the Scrabble Club and the U3A, and in her day played badminton, table tennis and tennis. She was also a volunteer driver to help older people (as she saw it) get to hospital – although I suspect they were often younger than Ann. From all of which we can see how active Ann has been in the local community.

Much of this was after she returned from St Lukes and the Royal Surrey in Guildford, where she worked as a dietician. She retired for the first time when she was 60 but then went back for a further five years – because she really enjoyed what she was doing.

It was whilst working as a dietician that she met Bob. He had worked in West End hotels as a chef but switched to the NHS and hospital catering. This was fortuitous because Bob and Ann married and shared over 40 years of happy married life together – well I expect that they had their moments! But they were good years and Bob and Ann went well together. Bob died in 2005.

We extend our sympathies to James and Katherine, Will and Chloe in their loss. Ann was a much loved Granny and greatly enjoyed spending time with Will and Chloe, not to mention Buster the dog.

Ann also, of course, played a very active part in church life and all that goes on here. She was Sacristan, which means she had special responsibility for frontals, linen and candles. It is one of those roles in church life which is largely unseen but essential. Frontals are changed according to the ecclesiastical seasons. Ann had been ably assisted in this by Anne Warren (who read the Lesson), Helena Hill and Caroline Dodds. From overhearing their conversation from time to time I can say that the country would be in very safe hands if they were in charge.

Ann was a very likeable lady. Not only was she reliable but also equally straightforward. You knew where you were with her – at least I did. She had a viewpoint and a clear ‘take’ on things. She was caring and concerned about others and often talked down herself and her own interest. She was wholly reliable.

She was part of church life by conviction and belief. Faith was naturally part of life for her and the two went hand in hand. The reading from Revelation is a poetic picture of life to come. We can have little that heaven is her eternal home. She will be greatly missed on earth by her family and many friends for her ready and willing heart; for her commitment and involvement and for her enjoyable company and friendship.

Jesus said “in my Father’s house are many mansions”. One of them has Ann’s name on it.

May she rest in peace and rise in glory.


Hymn: There is a green hill far away



Exit Music: Nimrod, from Enigma Variations, Edward Elgar

Committal followed immediately at Randalls Park Crematorium
Donations to The Royal Marsden Hospital.

from the December 2009 magazine
Ann Brixey I first knew Ann in the 1970s, when we were both the proud, if harassed, parents of children in the church choir; and when, in 1996, I returned from 19 years in the Midlands, there was Ann, just the same as ever: smiling, welcoming, helping so many people in so many ways. It was a pleasure in recent years to help Ann with church-based "chores", like changing the altar frontals or trimming candles, as together we could put the world to rights as we saw it!

Ann had strong views, and her faith and the church were very important to her, but she was not judgemental or unkind in her comments when people or events failed to meet her standards, and most of all she was quick to see the funny side too. Her gentle humour, punctuated by an occasional guffaw when struck by something particularly ridiculous, is something many of us will remember with love. I am so glad to have known her, and shall miss her greatly.

She loved the changing seasons in the Church year, and the changing colours denoting them, she kept the linen immaculate in spite of the worst efforts of incontinent candles, and the wine and wafers were there when needed.

Ann described the period of Sundays after Trinity as her "quiet time" when the frontal stayed a restful green for several weeks: this is when I shall most remember her.

I hope she is having a quiet time now, with the tranquillity and joy she so well deserves. Anne Warren

link to Bob Brixey's page

If you have any memories of Ann please contact the editor

page created 10 November 2009: last updated 1 Dec 2009

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