Tributes have been paid to the ‘most amazing woman’ who was known as the ‘matriarch of the family and the community’.

Eunice Rowley, 79, died from Covid-19 and COPD on Sunday September 3 at the Royal Bolton Hospital with 11 of her family members around her bedside.

She was a mother of four, a grandmother, a great-grandmother and a great-great-grandmother.

Leaving behind sons Dom and Duke Rowley, Dom said: “My mum was the matriarch of the family and not just the family but also the community as well.

“She was an absolute legend at problem solving, if someone came with a problem, she would work it out, and if someone was having an argument she would stand back and listen and she would be a good mediator.

“How will I remember my mum? That’s a difficult one because there are so many amazing things about my mum.

“Since Covid-19, she was locked indoors and couldn’t see her grandchildren and me and my mum used to just bounce off each other. We have always been a mega close family and the wider family as well.

“Everyone in the community, her family and her friends all adored her.

“My mum was always level-headed, and she loved a challenge, nothing was about my mum. She was always doing things for other people, and she never wanted any graces or favours in return.

The Bolton News: Eunice with her grandchildrenEunice with her grandchildren (Image: Natalie Rowley)

“When she passed away, she held my hand and she squeezed it and said don’t leave me and I said I won’t, she looked around the room at every single one of us and her heart just stopped, and she passed peacefully.

“She was just an absolute amazing lady, amazing.”

Natalie Rowley, Eunice’s granddaughter, said: “The devastation we feel as a family at the loss of my beautiful nan is one that's going to take some time to get over!

"She was the most amazing woman.

"She was my legal guardian from the age of six, she gave me the best upbringing and I will be forever grateful to her for that."

Bolton at Home have also paid tribute to Eunice, stating she has shaped the services provided to tenants across the borough.

A spokesperson said: “Eunice was a remarkable person who, as a long-time tenant and champion for tenants’ needs and rights, helped to make customer-facing services better for everyone living in our neighbourhoods.

“Eunice was also a pillar of strength in her community for those who needed some support at difficult times.

“Eunice was part of a team offering crucial insight when we changed from managing homes for Bolton Council to being a housing association in 2011.

“Eunice also cared deeply about disabled people living in homes that suited their individual needs and pushed for a separate budget for home adaptations to provide the best experience possible.

The Bolton News: Eunice RowleyEunice Rowley (Image: Natalie Rowley)

“Eunice performed a lot of different volunteer roles and worked with us in highly influential ways, including being on our board and customer-led committees over the years.

“She also made sure our policies were inclusive and considerate of customers’ needs as the tenant lead on our Equality in Action Panel.

“Eunice had a real say in important housing decisions over the decades that will continue to shape our services.

“In 2021, Eunice was nationally recognised when she received a special lifetime achievement award for her contributions to social housing.

“People were amazed by her kindness and how she kept helping others, including through the pandemic.

“Said then, and true today, our Group CEO Noel Sharpe described Eunice as being a leader in her community and a shining example of what dedication and commitment can achieve. We’ll miss her.”

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