Tribute to Pamela Farrell-Tredinnick
5 August 2014
We were extremely sad to hear that Mrs Pamela Farrell-Tredinnick OBE has died after a short illness. Pam was instrumental in the setting up of two of our care homes and served as a trustee of the charity for nearly 20 years.
Pam's husband Dr Rowland Farrell DFC had been an RAF fighter pilot during the Second World War. Shortly after qualifying as a doctor in the early 1950s, Dr Farrell was diagnosed with MS, which prevented him developing a full medical career.
Pam was struck by the plight of those in such situations, and at the suggestion of her mother she contacted our founder, Leonard Cheshire, who had already begun his pioneering work in support of severely disabled people. As a result, she was inspired to set up a Cheshire Home, and after many months of struggle to raise the large amount of money needed to buy a suitable site, and equip and staff it, the doors of Heatherley opened in 1961.
The process of getting the project up and running was incredibly difficult. Luckily there were many friends and supporters Pam could rely on to provide all manner of help, from money and fundraising activities to professional services which were often given freely. A few years later, Pam was again struck by the need for independent accommodation for disabled people and she initiated the building and commissioning of 12 bungalows.
Dr Farrell died in 1966, but throughout the 1960s and 70s Pam continued to develop Heatherley with the help of generous well-wishers and benefactors. She also founded another Cheshire Home, Seven Springs, and acted for a considerable period of time as Leonard Cheshire’s ‘roving ambassador’ in the United States and Canada. She served as a trustee until the mid-1990s and was awarded the OBE for her work with our charity.
All of us who knew Pam are aware of the huge debt we owe her for her energy, foresight and ability to influence others for humanitarian benefit. It was marvellous that in 2011 she was able to see the celebration of Heatherley’s first 50 years by Her Royal Highness Princess Alexandra, a solid vindication of the effort and care invested by Pam and all those who believed in her vision.
Our deepest sympathies are offered to Pam’s family, including her sister Angela. Nevertheless, whilst this is of course a time of sadness, we should also use the occasion proudly to celebrate the achievements of our dear, much-admired trustee of almost 20 years, and the immense effect she has had on all our lives.