Parish church loses dedicated Verger Anne

Anne Smillie-Pearson. EMN-180602-105057001
Anne Smillie-Pearson. EMN-180602-105057001

A woman who, for many, has been the face of Sleaford’s St Denys’ Church over the last 20 years has died aged 78.

Anne Smillie-Pearson, who for the last year had lived at Oakdene Care Home, died on January 29 after a long battle with cancer.

Vicar of Sleaford, Rev Philip Johnson said: “Anyone over the last few years that has come to the church for some sort of function will have encountered Anne.

“She was Verger for all those civic events and that was just the tip of the iceberg. She was a very public face and dominant figure for many years. But for the last year she was quite seriously ill.

“She has left a very big hole that no one person would ever be able to fill, because she did so much.”

As well as managing ‘front of house’, greeting people to services and concerts, handing out sheets and refreshments, for 12 years she was also a church warden.

She spent a time as parish administrator and was an authorised lay minister, leading morning prayer and helping in services.

Glasgow-born Anne was also editor of the Three Spires parish magazine serving Sleaford, Quarrington and Silk Willoughby churches. That was scaled back to just cover Sleaford when she became ill.

There will be a service in St Denys’ Church at 11am on Thursday February 15 followed by a private cremation.

Donations to St Denys’ Church.

Arrangements are by Colin Ward Funeral Services of Sleaford.