My apologies for the quality of the print quality on Hazel's order of service. I was unable to access the original document so have had to use my limited skills to get as far as this. If it can be improved I will try. Eileen
The words you read here are a mixture of tit-bits shared by Hazel’s family and friends which augment the words (in italics) spoken by Rev Peter Brown at her funeral.
Hazel Eileen Bolton, was born at Uffmore in Halesowen on August 29, 1935 into a family of two children. Her brother, Bernard, survives her. Her dad was an engineer and their home boasted an amazing grandfather clock which he had made (later to be transported to Hazel and Brian’s home). The family home overlooked the fields where the Huntlands Estate now stands. From there Hazel used to cycle to Clent - and freewheel back down the lanes! She was educated at St Margaret’s Church of England School and Halesowen Grammar School.
Hasbury Methodist Church plated a large part in the life of her family and that was where Hazel would meet Brian Parsons. Romance blossomed and they celebrated their wedding on March 23, 1961. They were blessed four years later with the arrival of Stephen in 1965 and then, in 1968, Rachel completed their family. In due course granddaughter Olivia (now studying at university) arrived. Hazel’s family meant the world to her- they were the pride and joy of her life.
Hazel was known for her sense of industry. Her dedication and commitment to building, supporting, and caring for the family that she loved saw her going back to work part time for Webb Ivory, The AA, Post Office, and then back to Lloyds Bank.
She was thoroughly domesticated. Her home craft was excellent) as was her passion for and commitment to her garden. She loved the outdoors and loved walking in the countryside where she immersed herself in the beauty and tranquillity of creation. She enjoyed sharing that time and space with her family and friends which was very precious to her and we have many happy memories of church rambles in Dovedale, Kinver, The Wyre Forest and in Clent. She and Brian enjoyed holidays abroad, and caravan holidays.
Her faith was the ground and centre of her life and being. It was the axis upon which her life turned. Her values, attitudes, and actions flowed from that deep eternal spring of God’s grace and love. Her source was Christ, He was her reservoir and boundless store of grace. Her world view was shaped by a passion for her creator and a love for his creation. She anchored her life in those eternal values that were rooted in the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
For a number of years Hazel taught in the Sunday School at Hasbury. Hers was largely a practical faith which she expressed through her unstinting commitment to Charities such as Action for Children where she knew her contribution made a real difference. We lost count of how many “Christmas Puddings” and “Easter chicks” she knitted or how many cakes she baked, or jars of jam and marmalade that appeared at regular intervals. A friend commented recently that whenever we were doing anything for AFC, Hazel was always there, usually manning a cake stall. Other friend comment - “her pastry was ‘melt in the mouth’ delicious”, “her recipe for Apple Cake lives on,” and “she made the BEST mince pies”. Hazel will be missed by the Church family where she was highly regarded and her love and friendship deeply valued in places such as the Craft Group, Monday Club and Open Door at Hasbury and in the local Townswomen’s Guild.
As we remember HAZEL’S life and recall the experiences we have shared with her and the achievements we have celebrated together, we thank God for her gifts, generosity, friendship, fortitude, integrity, inspiration, humility, honesty (sometimes making her seem outspoken!), her indomitable spirit, and the unbreakable bonds of love and fellowship that we were so privilege to share with her.
She will always be remembered for her love for her family and her gift of friendship. Her heart was open as was her life. The best thing she offered us and others was the gift of herself. We have been blessed and enriched for knowing her. We shall miss her. She has left a legacy of kindness, friendship, good memories, and lots of love. We are poorer for her lost but richer for having known her.
As we face the magnitude of this moment with all its mysteries, I want to encourage you to hold on to the words of W.R. Raymond, “Life is eternal, love is immortal and death is an horizon – and an horizon is but the limit of our sight.” There is something that is so poignant and profound that this gathering represents for you as a family. It is a watershed moment where we hold precious memories, hold each other, and hold on to God’s grace and peace to sustain now and for the future.”
Our church family and the wider community has lost a great friend who was a confidant and an encourager to so many. In our sadness, let us remember that HAZEL had a living faith which gave her the confidence to trust God right to end because she knew he was faithful in keeping his promises. Her risen Saviour welcomed her home with joy, a dutiful and faithful servant who will always be missed but remembered with deep affection.
MEMORIES OF THE GUILD
Margaret Bissell writes:
“The Guild was a big part of our lives in the Fifties. We would go for evening strolls after church on Sundays, dressed in our Sunday best. “ Margaret has a photograph of Anniversary Sunday which sadly isn’t of good enough quality to reproduce here but she says “ we were all wearing our new outfits including hats, gloves and handbags.
“There were regular Bank Holiday rambles over Clent and Walton and Guild coach trips to Malvern and Church Stretton. Hazel was a Sunday School teacher and helped to run the Junior Guild”
The photograph shows Hazel with pupils Pam and Joan. She remained part of the Sunday School ( later renamed Junior Church) for a number of years.