Remembering a great gardener

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A GREAT grandfather will be remembered for his passion for horticulture and love for his family.

Ever since were small, Walter Carson’s children can remember their father was a keen vegetable grower.

His passion for gardening saw the father-of-three become a member of the Brigham and Cowan’s Leek and Flower show committee, and a regular contributor to the shows.

His daughter Lynn Carson-Jefferson said: “The only time we were only ever able to pick flowers from the garden was when it was time for a show.

“He always used to do really well. I remember one year he came in second.

“In those days you didn’t get money, you got vouchers or prizes, and we were taken to Gateshead, where each of us got a new bike.”

Mr Carson had been a merchant navy seaman during the war, he then went on to work on the railways.

And it was during this time that, Mr Carson, who was a keen footballer, was spotted by Westoe pit, who offered him a job and a place on their football team.

However, after a few years of working in the colliery, an accident forced him to give up work. And it was then that his passion for gardening grew, after he and his family moved into a property in Sycamore Avenue, in Cleadon Park, where he had a bigger garden than he had been used to.

Mrs Carson-Jefferson added: “We were only young when he had the accident at work, and he became a full-time carer to us.

“It was also when he really became interested in his flowers and growing vegetables.”

Mr Carson, who lived in Wilfred Street, Boldon, before moving into The Branches Care home, in Jarrow, was also a keen fisherman, and would often take his children out on a boat.

He was also a keen darts player.

Mr Carson also enjoyed regular visits to Benidorm, in Spain.

His son Graham said: “He used to go to Benidorm for three months at a time. He loved it there.”

Mr Carson, who in his later life developed dementia, died in his sleep on January 13, aged 89.

A service was held at South Shields crematorium for Mr Carson, where £200 was raised for the Cruse Crew – a group raising funds for Cruse Bereavement Care Tyneside.

The family also wished to thank the care home for the care and support they showed their father during his time as a resident.

Mr Carson leaves behind daughter Lynn, sons David and Graham, nine grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren.

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