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'Fenland Poet' Reg Wenn, an ardent supporter of Doddington Hospital, has died aged 84



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Tributes have been paid to Fenland Poet and ardent NHS campaigner Reg Wenn who has died at the age of 84.

Reg, known to many as 'Wenn the Pen' was a keen poet and had four anthologies of his poems published. He regularly wrote poems about issues he felt strongly about, as well as personalised ones for family and friends.

He was a massive supporter of the NHS and was a leading light in the campaign to keep Doddington Hospital open. He campaigned to try to save Alan Conway Court and also led the way in raising fears in 2007 about the proposed relocation of out-of-hours doctors services to Wisbech.

Reg Wenn who has died at the age of 84. (39586919)
Reg Wenn who has died at the age of 84. (39586919)

He was concerned the move would put lives at risk and subsequently the service remained at Doddington.

His daughter Julie Butcher said her dad had reaped the benefits of his campaigning with the excellent healthcare given to him in his final weeks at home in Chatteris by the NHS.

She said: "Dad was given fantastic care from the Arthur Rank Hospice at Home Service, the district nurses and local George Clare Surgery. Without their help we would not have been able to care for Dad at home.

"We had to call the out-of-hours doctor the night before he died because he needed some more painkiller, and when the doctor arrived he said 'I recognise this gentleman, without him I would not have been able to get here so quickly' - which was great to see just what an impact Dad's campaigning had on local NHS services."

Reg was also a huge supporter of local boxing and sponsored Chatteris boxing champ Jordan Gill from the time he left school until he turned professional.

Julie said: "Dad loved boxing, and was a great supporter of the local boxing club. He was very proud of Jordan and what he has achieved.

"Jordan has agreed to come home for Dad's funeral on Tuesday (4) to give a personal tribute, which is wonderful. My stepdaughter Antonia Butcher is reading Dad's poem 'Summer Time'.

"Obviously with the current situation we have had to limit the number of people at the funeral, so it is only close family and a few close friends.

"Yellow roses will play at part in the service. Dad would always say 'keep smiling' at the end of a phone call or when he said goodbye to someone and he had a yellow rose plant given to him by a friend called 'keep smiling'."

Reg was forced to give up work when he suffered a serious injury after falling from the back of a lorry into an inspection pit.The accident put him in a wheelchair, but that did not stop him from getting out and about or fighting for local causes.

As well as Julie, Reg has two sons, Andrew and Christopher, six grandchildren and three great grandchildren. He had lived with his sister Thelma and her husband Alan Chapman for the past 30 years. He also had a second sister, Jean, who died some years ago.

Donations for Arthur Rank Hospice at Home in memory of Reg may be sent directly to the family Co-operative Funeralcare (inc. J.H. Landin), 72 High Street, Chatteris.



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