Obituary by Carolyn Hammond, Brentford & Chiswick Local History Journal 14 (2005)
We are sad to report the death of Mary King who was the popular and efficient Honorary Secretary of the Brentford & Chiswick Local History Society between 1990 and 2000. Mary was born in Airedale Avenue in 1926, moving with her family a few years later to the house in Rusthall Avenue that was to be her home for some 60 years. After her mother’s death in 1989 she took a flat in Homecross House, Fishers Lane.
Mary was educated at Godolphin and Latymer school and would have gone on to university had times been different. Instead she trained as a secretary and worked for most of her life at Evershed and Vignoles, electrical equipment manufacturers of Acton Lane, retiring as secretary to the Managing Director.
Mary was a worshipper at St Alban’s Church, Acton Green for most of her life and involved in many church activities, serving as secretary of the Parochial Church Council for some 30 years. In her retirement Mary was able to follow her interests in family history research, tracing her family back to Elizabethan times, and also in researching the local history of this area. She was a thorough and meticulous researcher and took part in many projects including classifying the book collection at Gunnersbury Park Museum and projects arising from the local history class at Chiswick School where she was an outstanding student, working on the Chiswick parish records, rate books and censuses.
She joined the Brentford & Chiswick Local History Society in the 1980s and was a member of the Society’s team which carried out research on Thomas Layton. She also co-ordinated the project to transcribe the 18th century letters to Humphry Morice from his steward at Grove House, typing out all the transcriptions and compiling indexes to the contents of the letters.
Mary suffered a serious stroke in 2000 from which she never recovered, and for the last four years of her life was cared for at St Mary’s Convent in Burlington Lane. She died peacefully in her sleep on New Year’s Day 2005.