Couple leave £155,000 to help Sunderland communities

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A CARING centenarian has left a lasting gift worth hundreds and thousands of pounds to the people of Sunderland.

Violet Barlow – who was affectionately known as Bunty – died last June, three weeks before her 101st birthday.

Now the lifelong Sunderland resident and her late husband will be remembered through a generous legacy to the city worth more than £115,000.

Their gift is set to go even further, as the Community Foundation’s Give2 charity scheme will match every £2 given with another £1. This will take the total value of the legacy to about £177,000.

Bunty Barlow – nee Waugh – was born in Middlesex, but her parents moved back to Sunderland when she was two years old.

She lived in the Ashbrooke area all of her life, spending her final years in Jubilee Nursing Home, in Thornhill Crescent.

She married husband James Edward, known as Teddy, in 1972 when she was 60 and he was 54.

Born in Canada to British parents, Teddy eventually returned to the UK with his family.

He qualified as an architect and moved to Sunderland in the early 1960s with his elderly mother after taking a job in the city.

He later became planning officer for Sunderland City Council and saw Sunderland Civic Centre being officially opened by Princess Margaret in late 1970s.

Before meeting Teddy in the late 1960s, Bunty was a full-time carer for her parents until their death and a volunteer with organisations including the Sunderland Eye Infirmary.

They lived together in Thornhill Terrace for more than 30 years and enjoyed an active social life, until Teddy fell ill and died a few days later in hospital on New Year’s Eve 2004, aged 87.

Just days before his death, Bunty moved into the care home.

Although the couple had no children, they left family including great-great nieces and nephews.

Bunty’s great-nephew Simon Lundy, said: “Bunty and Teddy were a lovely couple, who met each other late in life, married, and enjoyed a very long happy and healthy life together.

“They are greatly missed and will always be remembered with fondness by their family and friends,”

Now their memories will live on in the Give2 Sunderland Fund, which supports voluntary groups in the city with grants.

Lisa Cappleman, head of philanthropy development at the Community Foundation, said: “Bunty and Teddy sound like they were a fantastic couple and really enjoyed their later years together. We are so grateful that they remembered the Community Foundation in their will which means their legacy will live on in the Sunderland and Newcastle communities for years to come.”

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