Monday, 15 August 2022

Easy-going family man who never forgot his Welsh roots

JOHN REED, known locally as “Taffy”, passed away peacefully at Townlands Hospital in Henley on Thursday, June 27.

JOHN REED, known locally as “Taffy”, passed away peacefully at Townlands Hospital in Henley on Thursday, June 27.

He will be very much missed by his family and many friends.

Taffy’s “take-me-as-you-find-me” attitude, enormous sense of humour, goodwill and ability to tell a good story made him one of a kind.

He is known far and wide in Henley and Nettlebed, where he lived with his family and independently until his passing, and leaves an indelible mark on all who encountered him.

Our dad was born in the Rhondda Valley in South Wales in 1937.

In 1945, dad and his whole family moved to Donkin Hill, the Welsh estate in Caversham, later moving to Chiltern Road then on to what was known as the American Camp in Nettlebed, by the surgery, and finally to Priest Close.

Dad married Rose in 1962 and had three children, Heather, Paula and Fred.

He worked all his life, including at Sydney Greens, Ready Mix Concrete, Richard Biffa, Sita and Penny Royal, and even had a spell transporting donkeys to local donkey derbies and fetes.

Dad was very proud of being from Wales, never forgetting his roots.

He remained close to his brothers and sisters and extended family, all of whom live locally.

His retirement bought many changes. His favourite haunt became the Catherine Wheel in Hart Street, Henley, where he would go for morning coffee and to chat to old friends.

The last few years of life, with memory failing, Heather became his main companion and consort. “We still bloody laughed,” she says.

We will miss you, Dad.

The funeral will take place at St Bartholomew’s Church, Nettlebed, on Tuesday at noon.

The cortege will leave Taffy’s home in Priest Close and walk over the hill to the church at 11.30am.

The family welcome all to join the walk and service as well as a wake at the working men’s club in Nettlebed to share memories.

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