Tributes to woman who died after falling down vicarage stairs
TRIBUTES have been paid to a woman who died after falling down the stairs of a church in Bolton.
Edith Shirley Hale, who was known as Shirley, died at the Royal Bolton Hospital after the fall at St Augustine’s Church in Tonge Moor last Sunday morning.
Ambulances were called to the church at about 11.45am after Mrs Hale had fallen down the stairs, following the morning service, and suffered a head injury which left her unconscious.
She never regained consciousness and died just before 5pm. Mrs Hale, from Breightmet, had been the lay chair of the Walmsley Deanery Synod for about 20 years.
She worked closely with the area dean, Wendy Oliver, who is also the Vicar of Harwood.
The Rev Oliver said: “I knew Shirley for quite some time and we got on very well. She was dedicated and faithful to serving the Church of England.
“This has come as a real shock and Shirley will be someone who is sorely missed. You just don’t expect this to happen.”
Mrs Hale leaves two sons, Andy and Rob, her elderly mother, and sisters Christine and Maureen.
She has been described as a loved and respected member of the parish of Tonge Moor by the vicar of St Augustine’s, Father Tony Davies.
He said: “She was loved and respected not only within the parish of Tonge Moor, but also throughout the Diocese of Manchester.
“She had been a regular member of St Augustine's congregation for a great many years and was a valued member of the choir.
“She was also a member of the parochial church council and had served as church warden. She was also very much involved in the life and work of the wider church.
“She was lay chair of Walmsley Deanery Synod and a member of Manchester Diocesan Synod and, earlier this year, retired as a member of Bishop’s Council.
“She will be missed very much by everyone who knew her.”
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