‘Amazing’ community stalwart dies, aged 86

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A well-known member of the Storey family of Lancaster has died suddenly at home, aged 86.

Mary Bowring was the great-great grand-daughter of Sir Thomas Storey, who established Storey Brothers and built and gave the Storey Institute to Lancaster.

Mrs Bowring was born in New York in 1926, although her parents were living in Peru, where her father, Capt Alan Storey, was working in the cotton business buying for the family firm.

On returning to the UK the family lived at Forton. Her father became High Sheriff, an office later held by both her husband Geoffrey, who was a Lancashire county councillor, and their elder son Thomas.

The Storeys lived at Westfield House, Lancaster, and gave the land for the building of the War Memorial Village.

Mrs Bowring followed her father as president of the village. During World War Two Mrs Bowring lived in Massachusetts and later the family lived at Gressingham.

Mr and Mrs Bowring were married at Lancaster Priory in 1948 and moved to Halton Park, where they lived until Mr Bowring’s death in 2001.

Mrs Bowring was a magistrate in Lancaster for 25 years and represented Halton on Lunesdale Rural District Council.

In Halton she helped found the Abbeyfield Society and was a founder member and chairman of the Young Wives.

She was a long-standing supporter of the British Trust for Ornithology and of the Storey Gallery in the institute founded by her great-great grandfather.

At Caton she was a stalwart member of St Paul’s Church, where the funeral took place on November 8.

Her nephew Giles Bowring described her as an amazing person whose life of service to others was the stuff of legend.

She was a true friend and help to many of the aged and infirm, he said.

Mrs Bowring leaves her sons Thomas and Duncan, daughter Veronica and 12 grandchildren.