A Tribute – Roger Roberts, Chair The Golborne Forum
Susie Parsons died on 6 June at the age of 65 after suffering a major stroke. Susie was well known to many of us in Golborne. She chaired The Golborne Forum from its beginning and led in its many campaigns to improve the environment and conditions for people living and working in Golborne. One of the first things she oversaw when the Forum was newly formed was to ensure the then consultation about Golborne Road was widely promoted to the community and our comments taken on board by the Local Authority. A number of years later a new proposal has been on the books and Susie was again leading The Forum’s response. Before The Golborne Forum was formed, she’d played a similar role as chair of the six-year government funded regeneration programme Golborne United SRB. Her commitment of time and effort to Golborne and The Golborne Forum remained unabated even after she stepped down as Chair in 2014.
Susie lived in North Kensington for most of the last 40 years. Her effectiveness in her voluntary role at The Forum built on the skills developed in her working career which was focussed on issues around equality, fairness and social justice. Her campaigning work in Golborne involved holding the council to account, promoting the economic and social well-being of the neighbourhood and standing up for the interests of local people.
Her passions enthused all of us who worked with her on The Golborne Forum. It was under her chairmanship that The Forum ensured that the regeneration plans for Wornington Green were kept under the spotlight by the wider community and we continue to contribute where we can to future plans.
Golborne benefitted from her involvement in so many ways. After starting as a teacher in neighbouring Brent, she went on to work for housing campaign Shelter before joining the North Kensington Law Centre at its Golborne Road office in 1977. Subsequent jobs in her varied work life included senior positions such as head of Hackney Council’s Press Office, leading the Paddington and North Kensington Community Health Council, Chief Executive of London Lighthouse and Chief Executive of the Commission for Racial Equality.
Susie will be remembered for her role in launching and sustaining The Golborne Forum’s Golborne Road Festival. Her seemingly unlimited energy ensured that funding for the Festival was secured and that it has become a well-organised and highly popular local event.
Susie will be remembered for her outstanding organisational skills, her sharp intelligence and her ready wit. She was one of those people who could effortlessly form a rapport with people from all backgrounds and walks of life She was also a good friend. She is survived by her partner Dave Perry, son Ben and daughter-in-law Leigh.
Susie will be greatly missed.