Fight continues over tribute to former housing manager

Falstone Avenue residents Jim Pennock and Thelma Ramm, join Peter Bailey to unveil a memorial bench to Eve Bailey.
Falstone Avenue residents Jim Pennock and Thelma Ramm, join Peter Bailey to unveil a memorial bench to Eve Bailey.
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Angry OAPs living in a sheltered accommodation say they’re still upset their landlords still won’t let them pay a fitting tribute to their beloved former manager.

Residents in Falstone Avenue, South Shields, originally paid tribute to their former LiveSmart scheme manager Eve Bailey, who died in December, aged 58, by placing her picture in their shared communal hall.

tribute to Eve Bailey

tribute to Eve Bailey

However, bosses at housing provider Affinity Sutton told them it had to be removed – along with flowers and other pictures decorating the room – at the complex for the over-50s, due to it being ‘upsetting for some residents and colleagues’.

Jim Pennock, 68, a retired baker, and his neighbours then agreed with the housing bosses that a memorial bench would be nice.

So last month a service was held and Eve’s husband Peter Bailey also came along.

Jim said: “Eve was very well respected and she went above and beyond for us all.

We don’t know why it’s such a problem

Jim Pennock

“We held a little service and Eve’s husband came along and we officially unveiled her bench.”

But Jim and some of the residents were keen to place Eve’s picture on the bench, so people know it’s there in honour of her.

He said: “We want to put a small picture on the bench, so everyone can see it’s Eve’s and we can all be reminded of her when we go past.

“But again we’ve been told that we won’t be allowed.

Falstone Avenue memorial bench to Eve Bailey.

Falstone Avenue memorial bench to Eve Bailey.

“We don’t know why it’s such a problem to have a small picture of someone who we all thought the world of - it’s ridiculous.”

Bosses at Affinity Sutton say their reasons for not allowing Eve’s picture on the memorial bench are the same as those for removing it from the communal hall.

A spokesman for Affinity Sutton said: “We sympathise with residents on the loss of their LiveSmart Manager Eve who sadly passed away in December. Our thoughts are also with Eve’s family. LiveSmart schemes across the country are being refurbished and we consulted with residents at Falstone Avenue about which wall hangings in the communal areas would remain after it was redecorated. It was decided that it might be understandably upsetting for some residents and colleagues to be reminded of the passing away of Eve. We offered to provide an alternative memorial, including an outdoor bench, and gave Mr Pennock a selection to consider.