Tributes paid to much-loved Kenilworth resident who was passionate about helping his community

Members of the Kenilworth community have paid tribute to much-loved resident Keith Grierson who was passionate about helping those around him

Keith Grierson. Photo supplied
Keith Grierson. Photo supplied

Keith, who was known by many people in the town, was involved in several community projects and organisations.

Keith died on March 27 of a brain tumour aged 78 after being diagnosed in December 2021.

Lynn Grierson, his wife, said: "Keith was always in construction and project management. He worked on several projects - including one in the Middle East. He later went on to teach construction at Nene College in Northampton and Coventry University.

Keith Grierson

"He went back into the construction industry with Galliford-Try in Wolvey, where he stayed until he retired.

"Everyone was always amazed at what he did and how he had the time to do it all.

"It was all volunteer work and all for other people and charities and organisations."

Keith used his background in construction to help with projects in the community - including at St Nicholas Church.

Heather Alford from St Nicholas Church, said: "Keith first attended St Nicholas Church in the 1990s.

"He joined an Emmaus course, which gives the participants an insight into Christianity and leading a life as a disciple of Christ.

"He was later to be a leader on these courses and many people have testified to his support and encouragement to them as they too explored Christianity.

"Keith became a church warden in 2007 and was able to use his expertise and experience in the building industry in helping with the refurbishment of the Parochial Hall, the restoration of the organ, the rearranging of St Nicholas Church and, more recently the completion of a totally new heating system during lockdown.

"Sadly he will not see the fruition of his work on the new lighting in the church which he worked so hard on and will be installed in the near future.

"Always meticulous in his planning and organising, Keith, managed each project with professionalism and courtesy.

"He was a committed Christian and his attitude to tasks that needed doing was always the same; whether that be rodding drains, sweeping the church path or consulting with contractors.

"Keith’s faith shone through whatever he did. He will be greatly missed by many."

Rev Richard Moore, one of the curates at St Nicholas church, said: "I owe a lot to Keith, he wasn’t instrumental in bringing me to faith when I first started attending St Nicholas some 16 or 17 years ago but he was someone who nurtured and encouraged my faith enabling it to flourish and grow.

"He was both humble and intelligent, possessing a deep personal spirituality and a commitment to God through an active and faithful prayer life.

"Keith sought the best in other people and was patient and forgiving of their shortcomings; he was generous with his time and used his gifts and vast knowledge of the construction industry to the benefit of St Barnabas and St Nicholas churches. I shall miss him."

As well as helping with church projects and being a member of the Churches Together Kenilworth and District, Keith was also involved in community projects to help others - including Kenilworth Heartsafe and Compassionate Kenilworth.

Neil Morris, chairman of Kenilworth Heartsafe, said: "I first met Keith in 2018 when he organised a CPR training course in Kenilworth, which I attended along with about 20 other folk.

"We quickly discovered that this was more than a CPR training session.

"Keith had a vision for establishing a network of 24/7 publicly accessible defibrillators (AEDs) around the local community and this session gave him a platform to appeal for volunteers to join him in developing a plan of action.

"I was immediately taken by Keith’s enthusiasm and passion for this worthwhile cause.

"I was initially a little daunted by the scale of the task, given that I was the only volunteer who had come forward, but Keith’s energy, determination and remarkably strong sense of community spirit inspired us to develop an outline plan that ultimately resulted in the formation of Kenilworth HeartSafe which later became a registered charity with a mission strapline of 'Saving Lives in Kenilworth'.

"In three short years KHS, assisted by many good folk, other voluntary organisations and generous spirited local businesses, has increased the number of 24/7 publicly accessible defibrillators in the community from seven to 26 and has trained many in CPR and the use of AED’s.

"All attributable to Keith being a man of vision, passion and determination.

"During the time we worked together on KHS matters I came to learn that Keith had a very broad range of other community interests and I was always impressed by his energy and the huge time commitment he gave for the benefit of others.

"Keith was a very busy person who gave generously of his time to his community and he will be much missed by Kenilworth HeartSafe and the many other voluntary organisations he supported so enthusiastically and effectively."

Keith also did a lot of work with the Covid-19 Kenilworth Support Group, which went on to be renamed as Compassionate Kenilworth, which helped residents throughout the pandemic.

Richard Dickson, trustee at Compassionate Kenilworth, said: "Keith was involved in many local community activities, but his diligent work for Compassionate Kenilworth during the Covid-19 health pandemic was absolutely vital in helping the town respond to local needs.

"As a trustee of the charity, he was instrumental in helping us raise the funds we needed to sustain our work and he’ll be much missed.

"Our thoughts and prayers go to his wife Lynn."

There will be a memorial and thanksgiving service for Keith at St Nicholas Church on May 4 at 12.30pm.

Donations can be made to The Brain Tumour Charity or The Salvation Army via: https://keithgrierson.muchloved.com

People can also donate at the church after the service.