For those of you who have seen Howard out and about at the shows and markets over the past few weeks, you may have noticed him being a little quieter and less vivacious as usual. I'm re-posting this blog today in honour of Doreen Heaton, Howard's mum, who passed away this week. Not long after writing this original post in 2011, Doreen became ill and she passed away quietly last week and was buried today. Give them hell Dozza, wherever you may be.
"Yesterday we went to see Doreen Heaton, Tim's grandmother, who is on the right here. To be fair, we have both been so busy working on getting the website ready to go, that we hadn't been round to see her in weeks. Note to selves, must find more hours in each day, has anyone worked out how to make that possible yet?
We were lucky to catch her in the house in fact, as at 86 years old, Doreen is as independent in nature and strong in character now as you can imagine her to have been in her twenties. Regular trips to the shops, games of bridge, lunch and evening appointments with friends and that's all outside of the concert season at Leeds Town Hall where Doreen frequents most weeks. Not only were we in receipt of sweet tea and biscuits and treated to the electric fire being plugged in, but the trip was fruitful in other ways too.
Yet again, I got to try on Doreen's fur and wool coats, made in Heaton's of Leeds around 50 years ago. The coats even have her initials hand stitched in the lining! I think my fashion parade must have got her thinking about Heaton's then as she remembered she had some old photos and a written account of Henry Heaton’s life in the bedroom cupboard. The picture I came across that I fell in love with was the black and white one below. Doreen and her husband Geoffrey Heaton were attending a ball in Leeds and had this picture taken by Bellona Photographers from York. Check out the coat draped over her arm... A Heaton's special no doubt! One thing is for certain though, she hasn't changed much.
Most excitingly though is Henry's account of his own life. Look out for installments coming soon under the title 'Straight from the horse's mouth'."