Tag Archives: The Real Jac

Jac’s last long relationship

When Jac first decided to link her life with that of her last long term partner — a relationship which lasted for some sixteen years — it was apparent that they really were soul-mates.

He had trained as a carpenter and using his wide experience of traditional timber-framing he designs and builds imaginative ‘constructions’ for children’s playgrounds.

In 1988 he met a fellow craftsman whose interests lay in the use of musical elements and they joined forces for a time and began to create outdoor ‘musical’ play areas.  After another period of collaboration with a second craftsman he began to work alone and what evolved during this time became the series of ‘sensory installations’ from which he derives particular satisfaction and for which he is increasingly well known.

Children of all ages and abilities enjoy their interaction with the xylo bars and gongs, the touch-chimes and marimba and all the other percussive inventions which he builds into the strong and green-oak frame-work. Those children with very special needs, and those that have disabilities, respond marvellously to the sensations of physical contact with the tactile oak and to the resonance of the ‘instruments’. Continue reading

Of Jac’s marriage and family

After many years our sister’s first relationship came to its end; there had been so much love and such traumas, but they kept in touch throughout their lives. In the ensuing period Jac had a brief but happy time with a close friend, an architecture student (who was also loved and known by her family) before deciding to go abroad for a while. He was a gentle young man with a very sensitive soul: much later in his life, tragically he was involved in a catastrophic motor bike accident.

Our sister was an enthusiastic and experienced traveller who loved the sun and the sea and she visited both Greece and Italy as well as Turkey; the latter holding the foremost place in her heart, and many were the postcards we received from far away places.

Her next significant relationship was with a young man, also an architecture student, whom she had met in that Liverpool milieu. They fell deeply in love and later married, and he has now become a professional and highly innovative architect. After living briefly in Liverpool, London and Cumbria they settled, finally, in the countryside of North Wales where they bought their first real home — an old cottage needing much work — and where they raised their family of two boys and a girl. Jac’s husband designed and oversaw the restoration of the house and in it are several examples of Jac’s stained glass which still give great delight to the present owners. Continue reading

Jac’s first love

For this section of Jac’s story we will go back to her school days because it was while she was still at Kendal High School that she met her first love, a young man from Heversham Grammar School, and from then on they were inseparable. They formed a long and happy relationship and, when their schooldays were over, lived together although never marrying.

He had been offered a place in Liverpool to study medicine and for this reason Jac chose to enrol there for her teacher-training course, in order to be with him. He is now a much respected and successful doctor, acupuncture being one of his specialities.

His life however, was not all work — he was, from his youth, a very keen climber and in due course he was a member of the Lake District Mountain Rescue. He became a highly talented and well regarded mountaineer climbing with teams both K2 and Everest, and his determined work on behalf of the Sherpas is just one example of his caring spirit.

The relationship which he and our sister shared lasted, through many changes of direction, for the rest of their lives and he has always been a much loved family friend.

He knew of her illness and had supported her throughout and when he was telephoned from the room in the Chester hospital where she lay dying he came down from the Lake District with wings on his heels. He spoke to Jac’s ‘Welsh’ sister on his mobile during this journey, suggesting the massage movements which she could best use to soothe her and she held her own mobile phone to Jac’s ear so that he could speak gently to her. A nurse had told Jac’s sister it was likely that she was still able to hear, although she was by now no longer conscious — as the sense of hearing is often still present in times like these.

Shortly after this her daughter, whom Jac’s sister had finally managed to contact, arrived with her boyfriend and it was the most marvellous chance that she was able to talk to Jac, to stroke her hand and to be with her for the last precious moment.

Sadly, despite his speed, he could not reach her in time as she died not long before he reached the hospital but he was able to give a simple and meaningful Buddhist blessing at her bedside which we know was exactly right for Jac and what she would have wanted.

Our sister and he had loved each other so profoundly, and had been together for so many years, that it seemed only fitting that her children, in acknowledging this, should choose to introduce him in the order of service which they had prepared for her funeral as her ‘first love’.

Throughout her life she never ceased to love him.

Jac’s sisters.