A HEARTFELT tribute has been paid following the death of a Pershore Navy veteran who played an instrumental role in forming the town’s Naval Association branch and its headquarters.
Chairman of the Pershore and District Royal Naval Association Ted Annis died on Monday (November 10) at Worcestershire Royal Hospital after a long illness, aged 77.
The former town councillor, who served in the Royal Navy during the Suez crisis in the 1950s, devoted much of his life to the town and together with members of the branch helped raise more than £80,000 for many charities close to his heart.
In 2002, after meeting his old shipmate Mike Bradford in Belfast, Ted raised an idea to bring a Naval Association branch into Pershore which led to the Pershore and District Association launching later in the year.
Two years later Ted was then instrumental in the creation of what would be the Naval Association’s permanent home – the Pershore Naval Social Club on the High Street.
Since then the club has gone from strength to strength, mainly due to Ted and his wife Margaret’s work behind the scenes as well as other stalwart members, and has successfully raised funds to hold a fireworks display for the town.
Following on from that success, Ted and branch members began fund-raising to create an outside memorial to those who served the Armed Forces.
And their efforts were fully rewarded in 2011 when the Commemorative Garden was unveiled in the grounds of Abbey Park, a feature which became Ted’s pride and joy.
Ted’s daughter, Trudy Burge, hoped he would be remembered in the town for many years to come.
“We, his family, did everything we could for him over the years and are all devastated at his loss,” she said.
“Dad lived life to the full and despite being extremely ill over the past few years, he has carried on and achieved so much.
“I very much hope that he will be remembered for many years to come for that and all he has done for this town through the Royal Naval Association in the past twelve years.
“In particular, the Commemorative Garden in Abbey Park for which he raised £8,000 to build and was his pride and joy.
“My mum, sister and I have been overwhelmed by the hundreds of messages of condolence that have been flooding in to us and take comfort in the fact that he was so well loved in this town.
“He has left a huge hole in all of our hearts.”
Ted leaves behind his wife Margaret, daughters Wendy and Trudy, son-in-laws Ian and Andy, grandchildren Amy, Ben, Aaron and Tori, and great granddaughter Cerys.
His funeral will be held on Tuesday (November 18) at 2pm in Pershore Abbey.
No flowers are requested but donations are welcome in aid of the armed forces charity SSAFA.
Ted Annis (front) at HMS Raleigh whilst training in 1955. Picture courtesy of Trudy Burge.
Ted Annis (right) receiving his Life Membership of the Royal Naval Association and his wife Margaret (left) receiving her Certificate of Appreciation with Chris Dovey, National Chairman of the RNA. Picture courtesy of Trudy Burge