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Hundreds pay respects at funeral of former Elmbridge mayor
A former mayor of Elmbridge who was heavily involved with the community until the day she died was remembered at her funeral last week.
Every seat was filled in Christ’s Church in Esher and people were standing as hundreds came to pay their respects to Iris Simmons, who was a councillor for 12 years and involved with about 50 charities.
Mrs Simmons, who died on August 10, also founded the Rosemary Simmons Memorial Housing Association (RSMHA) with her husband as part of their wish to mark the death of their daughter Rosemary, who died in a road accident at just eight years old.
Councillor Rachael Lake, who attended the funeral on August 21, said: “She was an absolutely amazing lady. In every sphere of her life she will be missed.
“She was so involved, she was just a lady that was always there.
“She never took a back seat, Iris was always there.”
Mrs Simmons was made an MBE in 1975 for her services to the elderly and was made a Freeman of the City of London.
After the funeral service, guests went to Sandown Park, for champagne and live music to celebrate Mrs Simmons’ life.
Coun Lake said: “She was an effervescent young lady until the day she died. She will be sorely missed.”
All staff from RSMHA attended the funeral and the office closed at 1.30pm as a mark of respect.
Chief executive Paul Yates said: “She was a very strong character and very interested in people. She will be missed not only by her own family, but all the people in Elmbridge who she helped.”