Jean Balchin died suddenly on Sunday 26 July. She was just 82 years old. She leaves her husband Bob, who is not well himself, two daughters and a son. One of the daughters is wheelchair bound and lives in Australia and the other is Jane Garland who lives in Reigate with her husband Ned. The son is Jim.
Jean spent many years of unstinting service to the South East Region of the Bentley Drivers Club. I cannot believe there has been anyone previously who could have matched her dedication nor can I believe there will ever be anyone in the future. She had directly worked as the Region’s secretary for no less than nine successive chairmen.
Jean started as a one off ‘stand in’ to record the minutes for Brian Hughes in 1994. She must have done a pretty good job as, thereafter, she did not relinquish the post until 2015. After Brian Hughes came John Malyan, Ian Pitkethly, John Watson, Brian Baskerville, Chris Card, Roy Baker, Harry Waddingham and then Bob Zannetti.
Impressive as this list is, it must also be recorded that Jean transcribed the minutes, taken by the then secretary from 1989 when John Dorton was the chairman. That secretary was, of course, her husband Bob.
At the time the South East Region presented her with a small token for all that she had done for us. It was a silver Bentley Wings that was specially commissioned from W.H. Darby, and hallmarked in Birmingham.
The funeral arrangements for Jean Balchin were at Surrey and Sussex Crematorium, Balcome Road, Crawley, RH10 3NQ.
The family requested that any donations should be made to Alzheimers Research UK and should be sent C/O Clare Lush, Stoneman Funeral Service, Doran Court, Reigate Road, Redhill, Surrey, RH1 6AZ.