THE funeral of Brian Gardner, of Albermarle Nursing Home, Woodthorpe, Nottinghamshire, formerly of Kingsway, Bourne, took place at Mansfield Crematorium.
Born in 1933 in Rhodesia (a small village outside Worksop), Brian shared his childhood with two older sisters. After attending Retford Grammar School Brian’s working life started with North Notts Farmers in the accounts department. His love of sport especially athletics and football continued with him representing Worksop Harriers and playing football (on every field in Nottinghamshire and surrounding areas according to Brian). Brian married Jennifer in 1960 and over the coming years they raised four children, Susan, Lynn, Philip and Richard. Working life took the family to Driffield, Leicester and Bury St Edmunds before settling in Market Deeping.
For many years he could be found working in the family businesses owning and running a local Spar store and sports shop. Latterly Brian formed part of a management team at Blades in Market Deeping, running a grocery store, newsagent and post office. Sport remained a key part of life with social badminton eventually taking over from football.
In 1989 the family moved to Bourne. Brian sadly lost his wife Jennifer in 1991. He remained active in retirement playing golf at Toft for many years with a small group of friends. He quickly worked out that he needed an alternate plan for wet or cold days and took up indoor bowls. Always supportive and family orientated Brian remained engaged with the community through the organisation of the Deeping Road Race for many years (in aid of Cancer Research) and supporting his grandchildren in their sporting activities. It was in recognition of his contribution to sport in the community and to charitable fundraising that Brian was nominated to carry the Commonwealth Games baton as part of the Queen’s Jubilee baton relay which covered the country in 2002. He was watched by all the schoolchildren at Bourne Abbey Primary School, including his grandson’s class, when he completed the section on Abbey Road, Bourne. In later years Brian enjoyed the company of eight grandsons and two granddaughters. Brian is sadly missed, but fondly remembered by his family.
Mourners included: Susan (daughter), Frank, Oliver, Niall and Elliot Russell. Lynn Gardner (daughter), Damien, Catherine and Jonathan Welfare. Philip (son), Caroline, Matthew and Stuart Gardner (also representing David). Richard (son), Julie, Jenny and Thomas Gardner. Edna Molesworth (sister). Roger (nephew) and Mary Molesworth. Ian Whitehouse (nephew), Richard Whitehouse.
Sympathisers included: Tom Russell, John Russell, Jenny, John and James Loan Clark, Merryn and Peter Woodland, Annette and Alex Elliott. Amanda Saunderson, Martina Parsonage, Hermeeda, Pam, Gloria, Rose, Florence and Mr Rashid (representing Albermarle Care Home). Kate and Aidan Mahon.