Private family funeral service will be held.
Mrs Joan Heap, of Ward Avenue, Oswaldtwistle, sadly passed away peacefully on Friday March 13, aged 91, at Singleton Hospital, Swansea. The much-loved wife of Les (who sadly passed away in 2009), and mother to Alyson, Ian and the late Andrew, she leaves seven grandchildren and two great-grandchildren – all of whom will sadly miss her.
Although growing up and living her early years in Nelson with her parents, she moved to Oswaldtwistle after marrying Les Heap, and lived most of the remainder of her life in the Accrington and Oswaldtwistle area. Initially working as a telephonist in Accrington Police Station, she also managed a haberdashery shop in Norfolk street, Accrington for a number of years. After making a life-changing and bold step to train as a social worker, she obtained a position working in the Paediatric Social Work team at Queen’s Park hospital and later Royal Blackburn Infirmary. Joan relished working in this post for many years, specialising in the support of families who had children with terminal conditions and was well-respected for her sensitivity and commitment by her social work and medical colleagues.
In her retirement years, Joan and Les enjoyed travelling and were heavily involved in the caravanners and Campers Christian Fellowship, organising a number of their rallies. Joan’s other great passion was her involvement with the church in Oswaldtwistle – originally John Street Christian Institute, then through a number of physical changes of meeting places to its present iteration at Union Street Community Church. As a member of the church elders, along with her husband, she was a driving force, leading the church choir which became well known and performed throughout the North West. She also played a major role in the planning and organisation of the church, and she was the Church Treasurer until well into her 80’s.
Due to current restrictions, Joan’s funeral will be in two parts – a private burial which will only be attended by family members, then later in the year it is hoped to celebrate her life with a thanksgiving service with her friends and family.
Donations to Multiple Sclerosis Society