One of Stapleton's longest residents and most committed naturalists, Irene Hockey, died recently. She was born in the area in 1921 and lived in the house she was born in for nearly all of her life. Irene was also my next door neighbour.
I wanted to put a little tribute to her on the blog because she has inspired many of the the things we have done in Snuff Mills Action Group. Irene used to tell me lots of stories about the area when I saw her and that was the inspiration behind the oral history project we are doing - sadly she died before we were able to interview her for the project.
It was also Irene who remembered the name of Grove Wood when everyone else had forgotten its name. Her husband, Hector, organised the first ever campaign to protect Grove Wood in the 1970s when he tried to stop the hospital from dumping their rubbish in the woods.
Irene loved Snuff Mills and especially Stoke Park before the motorway was built and she was one of the leading members of the original Stapleton Conservation Society and was heavily involved in the Bristol Naturalists Society too. There wasn't much about the area or wildlife that she didn't know and I know I will miss her encouragement and support.