Patricia Sargent 1931-2016

Patricia Sargent, a long-serving and active member of both the Chelsea Society and the local Conservative Association, died at Trinity Hospice on Friday 9th December 2016. She was 85.

Patricia, née Mooney, was raised at Whitley Bay in North Tyneside. On and-off for nearly 50 years she lived in Chelsea at 92 Elm Park Gardens.

Apart from being a tireless volunteer, she worked as a bookkeeper for various local estate agents, including Aylesfords, and at the Marjorie Parr Gallery in the King’s Road. In his book on the gallery, Peter Davies tells how the business had a reputation for efficiency, sending proper receipts and

monthly accounts: this welcome trait “owed much … to Pat Gelley”, who he described as “another loyal, committed gallery assistant.” In 1989 Patricia Gelley became Patricia Sargent following her second, and very happy, marriage to Jimmy. The two of them then lived in Dorking where she nursed him in a final illness.

All who knew her well say that Patricia was devoted to Chelsea and a firm believer in the need to protect it. (She was, for instance, opposed to the proposed Crossrail2 station in the King’s Road.) In the Chelsea Society she is remembered for decades of attendances at Council meetings, for her work as Hon. Treasurer (1972- 1977) and as Hon. Membership Secretary (1985-2012).

At the North Stanley, later Stanley, Ward of the local Conservative Association she was what is nowadays euphemistically called an activist, in practice a participant in the unseen but utterly essential work of envelope-stuffing and door-to-door deliveries.

Pat, who was gregarious and loyal to her many friends, was intensely private. She was also a woman of fortitude. Not only did she have the misfortune to lose the sight of an eye when a child (replaced eventually by a glass eye which she thought an excellent match) but for the last years of her life struggled with worsening motor-neurone disease.

In some ways Patricia Sargent can be thought of as a less driven version of Margaret Thatcher. Having been brought up in a small provincial town where her grandfather was a grocer and her father a commercial traveller, she escaped as a young woman to London, moved into a different world and yet was always a Conservative and always rooted. She did not talk about it, of course, but with her love of company, laughter and a good bottle of wine, she was also a true Geordie.

(Obit. by Terence Bendixson)

Her funeral was at Putney Vale Cemetery on Thursday 5th January 2017

 

 

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