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£2,750raised of £2,700 target by 112 supporters

Weʼre raising £2,700 to Restore the final resting place of Sir Charles and Lady Katharine Parsons ( at Kirkwhelpington, Northumberland.

Kirkwhelpington, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK

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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 Baldasera2 days ago
    Ruth Baldasera

    Ruth Baldasera

    2 days ago

    Had a wonderful morning at F H Hardy florists in Morpeth today, where they have committed to take part and do the flowers I have requested for both the gravestones and the church, on the day of the service. This is another business who has said it is an honour to take part, have taken the time to read the story, and fully understand why I started this. I am of course keeping Lord and Lady Rosse fully informed of the arrangements, and am so honoured that they have trusted me to organise things.

    Update from the Page owner

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  • Ruth Baldasera3 days ago
    Ruth Baldasera

    Ruth Baldasera

    3 days ago

    Arrangements for the service are coming along great, flowers discussed should come in around the £120-150 mark, professional binding & printing of the scrapbook for the church £230, and I am making a Book of Respect to capture comments from this website and the service so please make sure you sign it, approx £60 for that. It is only £12 an hour or hire the hall, so thats easily sorted. We should have plenty left over for catering but thats not quoted yet and any money left will go towards ongoing maintenance for the next few years.

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  • Ruth Baldasera12 days ago
    Ruth Baldasera

    Ruth Baldasera

    12 days ago

    Final invoices have started to come in - The stonemason has considered it an honour to carry out the work for £380 The gardening contractor has committed to looking after the site for 10 years for £500 When I start paying for the costs associated with the church service I will post figures as they come in. Please get in touch regarding the service to let me know if you can attend. It will take place 13th October I the afternoon at Kirkwhelpington. Thank you.

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8 months ago

Ruth Baldasera started crowdfunding

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Page last updated on: 8/21/2018 8:27 PM



  • Ian Murdoch

    Ian Murdoch

    Aug 21, 2018

    Ruth,We're very impressed by all the work you have so clearly done to get this and the event organised so well. We see the results of Parsons' work every day and yet don't seem to acknowledge it.


  • Anonymous


    Aug 20, 2018

    Hopefully, target achieved, Well Done and Thank You Ruth!


  • Ian Miller

    Ian Miller

    Aug 12, 2018

    Glad to donate to the memory of Charles A. Parsons who has provided employment and friendships for so many people


  • Alan Levitt

    Alan Levitt

    Aug 3, 2018

    Many thanks and well done Ruth.



    Jul 25, 2018


  • 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.


Ruth Baldasera

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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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