Belfast Telegraph

Tribute to former Harland & Wolff employee Rosemary Graham who died, aged 105

Rosemary Graham worked for Harland & Wolff for a number of years
Rosemary Graham worked for Harland & Wolff for a number of years

By Claire O'Boyle

A former Harland & Wolff worker has died, aged 105.

Rosemary Graham, who worked as a blueprint tracer on major vessels including HMS Belfast, passed away peacefully last Wednesday.

Mrs Graham's daughter, Patricia Effard, described her mother as "remarkable".

A service for Mrs Graham, who finished writing her memoirs at the age of 98, will be held today at 11am at Dunmurry Presbyterian Church.

"We have people coming from all over," her daughter said. "My mother was such a warm, outgoing person she made friends everywhere she went. She was always helping people. She had so many friends and we've got people coming from all over for the service, from Sheffield, London, Bristol, everywhere."

The art enthusiast, who studied jewellery and embroidery, sadly lost the sight in one eye a number of years ago and became an advocate of research into eye conditions.

Mrs Graham attended Belfast College of Art in the 1930s, and worked on the Royal Coat of Arms for the King, which hung behind the throne in Hillsborough Castle. For her 97th birthday, the family arranged a private visit and afternoon tea there.

Marking her 105th birthday in October, the Dunmurry centenarian visited the newly opened Titanic Hotel, and remembered the exact spot where she worked all those years ago.

Mrs Effard (60) previously told how her mother left her job after marrying her father George in 1939, but the war effort meant her 'retirement' didn't last long.

"She didn't ever say much about that time, it was difficult," said Mrs Effard, who now lives in the East Midlands. "She just did her bit."

Mrs Graham raised her daughter and son, Howard, now 65, alone as her husband died when the children were young.

Belfast Telegraph

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