Much-loved mid-day supervisor remembered
Tuesday 3rd October 2017 @ 09:40 by Adam Higgins
Hadfield News

There’s a place in the playground of a Hadfield school where children will never feel alone. 

It’s there because of a much-loved mid-day supervisor who died tragically young.

Friends of Denise Walshaw, who passed away unexpectedly last December, have built a ‘Buddy Stop’ at St Charles Catholic Primary.

It is a bench covered by an arch where children can sit and chat, whatever the weather. They say there couldn’t be a more fitting memorial.

Dinner lady friend Rebecca Parkinson said: “Denise was an amazing individual who cared for the children in school. There was always a huge crowd of them around her.

“She always made sure that no child was alone so we feel this is a fitting tribute in her memory…that children will have a safe place to be with a friend.”

Tribute: Twins Sophie (left) and Chloe with dad Jeff

Rebecca and mid-day supervisor friends Michelle Woolhead, Rachel Smith and Sara Smith, raised £363.50 from a 16 week long sponsored swim, which was just about enough to build the Buddy Stop.

They are delighted with the plaque on the front of the stop, picked out in the colours of their harlequin tabards.

They think Denise, who was 44 when she passed away, would be happy with the message beneath it – ‘Friendships are made at playtime’.

The Buddy Stop was unveiled on Friday by Denise’s husband Jeff and their seven-year-old twin daughters Sophie and Chloe.

Much-loved: Denise Walshaw

The family lived in Gladstone Street in Glossop before moving to Tavern Road in Hadfield around a year ago.

There were signs of emotion as the girls cut the tape in front of the whole school and balloons were released into the afternoon sky.

Head teacher Bernadette Quirke, who was at the ceremony, described Denise as an ‘absolutely lovely lady’.

Husband Jeff, 47, a train driver, said he was happy with the tribute and the kind words of his wife’s friends.

Jeff said: “I would like to personally thank all the pupils and staff at St Charles’ school who sent us so many lovely messages and cards of support and admiration for Denise, who was so clearly loved by all the children at the school.

“Special thanks to Becky and all the ladies who have raised the money to build the Buddy Stop.”

Rebecca added: “Thanks goes to Thomas Parkinson, Sean James, GK Wilson Gardening and Kirsty from KSD Flowers for their time and contributions.”

 

Main picture:

Somewhere to go: Mid-day supervisors and school staff with Jeff and the twins at the Buddy Stop 

 

By David Jones