Within hours of our sister’s death — still disbelieving, although in shocked but certain knowledge — we were gathering in a family room at the ‘Countess of Chester’ hospital. We had not left her, but — as we felt the need — were moving to and fro; reluctant to accept the finality that she had gone from us… it was then, several hours after Jac had died, that Jim Perrin finally reached the hospital and joined us.
Our ‘Welsh’ sister, after she arrived at the hospital at 07.00 that morning, had contacted as many of us as she could, to tell us of Jac’s worsening condition. Jim Perrin was the first she had tried to telephone — Jac was at this point still alive — although it was not possible to reach him, ref. our post Our Account of Jac’s Illness … part 4. But as soon as he responded to his mobile he was informed.
He had left Jac early the previous day (and he was not with her at the moment of her death, as he so lyingly described in his book — nor during those long, drifting hours before she died.) Yet he came to the hospital many hours later than all those who had made their long journeys to Chester: from Cumbria; from Yorkshire; and from as far away as Suffolk — as well as from various places in Wales.
And then — after being with her in her room only a very short time — he started a discussion in which he ‘informed’ us that he ‘would be burying her ashes in the garden of her home’. He said that she had told him it was what she wanted.
That he should have chosen this moment to be speaking of it at all was so insensitive and contrary to all feeling that we were shocked: surely it was too soon — whilst Jac was still lying in the late-afternoon sunlit tranquillity of her room nearby, yet he had the strange temerity to speak of her in this way.
His idea was instantly rejected by her family as we knew without doubt that it was certainly not what Jac had wanted; she always said (from long years before) that she would wish to be taken to the sea. Her sisters knew it: her children knew it. Jim Perrin had lied: and, when so positively corrected, he looked shame-faced.
We think it was a territorial move: he was making known his intention to stay at her house and to take charge, and he had not expected to be challenged; his problem was, always, that he never realised how close we all were, and how much we knew.
* * * * *
When speaking to Jac’s children a day or so afterwards (and this was before she had been taken from the hospital) Jim Perrin told them that it had been ‘her last wish’ (whilst he was alone with her…?) that he should become the next tenancy holder although, he said, they would be welcome to stay there! It was their home, and had been for fifteen years! Ref. our post Overheard at the Funeral.
And as he had so discouraged them during his time with Jac — making them uneasy and unwelcome (even so seriously assaulting one of them that the police had been informed) — and had tried to engineer their departure, it is noteworthy that he now made the opportunity to tell them ‘how he had promised her he would look after them’, and that, ‘obviously, it made sense financially — as they were young students — and he was better able to take care of these matters’! However, his previous history, as is being revealed on our site, would seem to indicate quite otherwise… rather, we believe, he has an extremely murky past in his ‘financial’ dealings with other people’s property.
But: it had been in fact, he said, ‘their mother’s last wish’ that he should take over the tenancy. This was really emotional leverage bordering on blackmail. If they suspected him and failed to accede to his plan, they would be dishonouring ‘their mother’s dying wish’ otherwise, by their acceptance, he would maintain power over them and their home.
However, in the same conversation, he began as he meant to continue:
‘But there will have to be changes around here — a régime change’.
We wonder, with his record within the family of control and domination and violence, how long it could have worked? We believe he had no intention of it ‘working’ but realised that he needed their preliminary approval in order to consolidate his position, after which it would suit him very well if they left: he had tried to achieve this when Jac was alive.