A local preacher and keen horticulturalist has been posthumously awarded Mullion’s community shield three months after his death.
Rex Bray passed away after a short illness on January 1, leaving his wife Rosemary to collect the Ron Curnow Community Award on his behalf at a special presentation by Mullion Parish Council last week.
She received the award from council chairman John Lang, who said: “Over the years Rex made outstanding contributions to the parish in all sorts of ways. He was a great source of information and a great service to the parish, absolutely loved by all.”
Mr Lang described Mr Bray as a “very quiet, unassuming person” who had an immense knowledge of the parish that he was happy to share. He was just a “thoroughly nice bloke,” he added.
Mr Bray, 74, dedicated his life to the village in which he grew up, having been born at Predannack and then moving aged two to Mullion itself. He was a long-standing member of the Mullion Horticultural Society and chairman since 1973, organising events each year to fund a marquee in which to hold the group’s annual show.
A proud Cornishman, Mr Bray was also a member of the Old Cornwall Society and helped in the formation of the Mullion Heritage Centre.
A lifelong member of Mullion Methodist Church, in 1965 he became an accredited local preacher, quickly becoming a familiar face in the Methodist circuit through preaching across the Lizard Peninsula.
He took the service at Manaccan only the day before he became ill, at the end of October last year.
His wife Rosemary said of the award: “He would have been very proud. I was proud to be able to go and do it for him.
“He wouldn’t have been expecting it, that’s to be sure. I’m just so sad that he couldn’t have been there himself, or had it before I lost him.”
Mr Bray’s name is now engraved on the shield and his wife has been given a photograph she can keep, as well as a Cornish badge – something Mrs Bray said her husband would have been “very proud to have”.
A collection at Mr Bray’s funeral raised £1,590 for Mullion Health Centre and Mullion Community Primary School Gardening Club. In his later years Mr Bray worked with the school club to develop its garden, which brought him great joy.
As a young man he had worked as herdsman and also a builder for a short time, before taking up farming.
Mrs Bray said: “He’s the inspiration behind my life and the things I’ve done. I would never have done these things without him.”