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£2,595raised of £3,000 target by 107 supporters

Weʼre raising £3,000 to Restore the final resting place of Sir Charles and Lady Katharine Parsons ( at Kirkwhelpington, Northumberland.

Kirkwhelpington, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK
16 days to go

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Sir Charles and Lady Katharine Parsons passed away in the 1930s, and were buried in Kirkwhelpington. They had one son (Algernon) and one daughter (Rachel), but both children died unmarried and there were no grandchildren.

Parsons created Heaton Works in 1889, and the factory now owned by Siemens, still exists today, employing 600 people. At its peak there were over 12,000 personnel employed. Thousands of local people have benefited from employment at Parsons over the years, and hopefully the factory will go on to create jobs for many years to come. There are many places where you can read and learn about this extraordinary man, his achievements, his contribution to the North East and most people know of his record-breaking ship Turbinia which is at the Discovery Museum in Newcastle.

Lady Parsons was a founding member of the Women's Engineering Society in 1919 ( and served as the 2nd President of WES between 1922-1925, following her daughter, Rachel Parsons. Lady Parsons was an engineer of ability and had the distinction of being an Honorary Fellow of the North East Coast Institution of Engineers and Shipbuilders. At the time of her appointment she was the first lady to be elected an honorary fellow or honorary member of any British engineering society.

Major Algernon Parsons lost his life after 4 years service during WW1, and Rachel Parsons was a pioneering woman who took responsibility for training women for the Ministry of Munitions during WW1. (You can learn more about Rachel here -
Their family home at Wylam was handed over as a military hospital, and the factory made over 8000 searchlights during the Great War.

The stones need to be restored, and then I would like to leave the local parish a sum of money to look after the stones in the future.

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  • Ruth Baldasera4 days ago
    Ruth Baldasera

    Ruth Baldasera

    4 days ago

    Yesterday I spent the day with Deb Martin, the daughter of one of C A Parsons great engineers, Mr Norman Parsons, and we visited the graves together. Really pleased to see work has started and the rose bowl has been taken for restoration. Next steps are for the mason and the architect to meet and discuss progress to decide for example how far to take the cleaning of the stone etc.

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  • Ruth Baldasera13 days ago
    Ruth Baldasera

    Ruth Baldasera

    13 days ago

    July sees the anniversary of the birthday of Rachel Parsons, the only daughter of Sir Charles and Lady Katharine. I first heard about Rachel at a talk at the Lit and Phil in Newcastle, given by the author Henrietta Heald. I found her story fascinating, and it was that story which started my interest in the whole family. You can read her story on the following website - . Or, search on Parsonstown The genius of the Parsons family.

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  • Ruth Baldasera21 days ago
    Ruth Baldasera

    Ruth Baldasera

    21 days ago

    We now have all the permissions in place and the stonemason has been instructed to commence work, hopefully we will see some physical progress during early July. In the meantime, here is a picture I took from inside St Nicholas Cathedral in Newcastle, which shows the stained glass window erected in memory of Sir Charles.

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6 months ago

Ruth Baldasera started crowdfunding

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Page last updated on: 7/12/2018 5:09 AM



  • Margaret Raw

    Margaret Raw

    May 11, 2018

    Cheque received at CAP Works in Heaton via Friends of Discovery Museum from Mrs Margaret Raw, whose grandfather Mr R J Walker worked with Sir Charles on Turbinia and other projects.


  • Lynette Willoughby

    Lynette Willoughby

    May 2, 2018

    Brilliant idea, thanks for thinking of this and getting it going.


  • Bill Toward

    Bill Toward

    May 1, 2018

    Many thanks Ruth for giving me the chance to donate to this and I will definitely share on Facebook. I wish you every success in raising the targeted amount.


  • Andrew Michel

    Andrew Michel

    Apr 28, 2018

    It is a great cause and pleased to support it. And thanks for your support at the Nescoe 360 Seminars


  • Anonymous


    Apr 13, 2018

  • Sandie Booth

    Sandie Booth

    Apr 6, 2018

    Well done you are doing a great job!


  • Alan Rutherford

    Alan Rutherford

    Apr 4, 2018

    My second attempt Ruth - let's keep trying!


About the fundraiser
Ruth Baldasera

Ruth Baldasera

Kirkwhelpington, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK

I have been reading a lot recently about the Parsons family, and the huge impact of their work on the people of the local area. I am fascinated by the stories I have discovered about Charles and Katharine, their son and daughter, and their contribution during WW1.

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