In Loving Memory of


Val Harrison

This book of condolence is for family and friends to share memories, stories and tributes for us all to remember our Mum, Valerie Doris Harrison, who sadly and unexpectedly, passed away on Thursday 27th April 2023.


Mum was born in Dulwich, London, the only child of William ‘George’ Drywood and Doris Drywood (née Nurse).  She lived in Dulwich until she married our Dad, David Harrison, and moved into Beckenham in 1975.  Mum lived in their house ever since.  In the 1980’s Mum and Dad joined Beckenham Baptist Church, both sang in the Church choir regularly until Dad passed away in 1993 (himself a Police Officer for over 33years).  Since then, Mums joys came from being part of the Church community, and membership of many related groups, as well as being member of other Choirs enjoying her passion of singing.


Over the years Mum had worked as a member of the Metropolitan Police Civil Service, within the nursery and crèche facility at the Church, and as a clerical assistant for two local businesses.  She had also volunteered for various roles over the years, including being a Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) collection official,  Chair and Secretary of the local Safer Neighbourhoods Team, and as a ‘stooge’ for the training of Police drugs dogs, along with many other voluntary roles that she had undertaken through the Church over her 40+ years of membership.


We invite everyone, to take a moment to remember Mum in your own way, in her memory.


Thank you.


Remembering our Mum, Val Harrison 13.02.1947 – 27.04.2023 

Book Owner: John & Graeme Harrison
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Steven Hall

I have very happy memories of the time when, as a parent, Val helped with the choir at Marian Vian Primary School, where I taught from 1988 to 1993. She led a parents’ choir in one of our summer concerts so that we could sing in three-part harmony and it sounded glorious. I also always looked forward to her little pieces of needlework on cards. I remember with fondness her enthusiasm, good humour and willingness to help out wherever possible. We kept in touch every Christmas and it was with great sadness that I heard of Val’s passing. I am sure that she will be missed by many people, myself included. …

Elizabeth and Olivier Beroud

Val was one of the first person to welcome us in the church all these years ago when we first attended Beckenham Baptist Church. She was always welcoming and friendly and ready for a laugh and saw our 3 children grow up… and scolded them if they were running too recklessly in the church – (quite right). She is/was one of the rocks of our community and we feel bereft without her.  Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and the many friends she leaves behind. …

Mim & John Cloud

Val has been the best neighbour of ours for very many years. Helping with any emergency,  surprising us with tasty cooking treats , baking and bringing round her wonderful cakes . and always had time for a chat. Dear Val , you will be very sadly missed . It’s strange not seeing you around now . I guess heaven has another angel, a culinary delight with a special singing voice.  R.I.P. Lovely neighbour. Till we meet again  love Mim, John and all the family .xx   …

Carolyn Jones

I met Val when I joined the BYMT choir. It was the first time I had sang in a choir and I was very nervous, therefore was grateful for her warm welcome and friendly smile. Val is very much missed by us all. …

Linda Hammett

I met Val at the BYMT Choir. She was one of the first people to welcome me when I joined & it was always a pleasure to chat to her. She invited me to a day of singing in different churches around London & we had a great day. Val was always kind & thoughtful, & I will miss singing & chatting with her.    …


VAL  was the daughter of my Mother’s brother George & wife Doris .Val spent many years visiting my parents Doris & Joe Fletcher  & myself Barry & younger brother Keith in the village of Caldecote in Cambridgeshire & we used to take it in turns to spend Christmas in either homes. In latter years when sadly her husband David died, Val was much to be admired bringing up John & Graeme alone, which was not an easy task but all credit due to her to the young men they have become. She was very proud of them both & of Adele & grandson Adam.Val was always happiest singing in her choirs & my wife Janet once said she loved  the anthem ‘All in the April Evening’ which she sang in a church choir as a young girl. Val instantly sent her the CD of that anthem & we will always remember Val when we hear it. Val & the boys have visited us here in Cambridgeshire & we loved seeing everyone at John’s Wedding! We will be thinking of you all.       …

Yvonne and Charles Murdoch

We have had the pleasure of knowing Val since Adele and John first became an item in 2006. We shared many happy family occasions, notably John and Adele’s wedding and later Adam’s Christening, where her culnary skills came to the fore, when we all enjoyed her caramalised onion tartlets! As we became friends and fellow grandparents we realised how her church and music was so much part of her life. Her singing was extremely important to her and we loved hearing about her forthcoming choral events and often attended them, to great applause too! Her sons John and Graeme are a great testament to their good upbringing and to Val’s great input in their teenage years, when times must have been difficult after David’s early passing. We have a wonderful example of Val’s cross stitching hanging in our hall – a beautiful red rose, she kindly made us for our 50th wedding anniversary. She was multi-talented and every year made us a delicious Christmas cake, which we all enjoyed. We have many happy memeories of times spent together, Val is very much missed and passed too soon.  Love Yvonne and Charles xxx …

Heather and Ken

Our thoughts with John and Graeme, and John’s family – and with the circle of friends who will miss Val so much. We have so many memories of Val at Elm Road Baptist Church, of singing at different choral days and events, West Gallery occasions etc. There was the hospitality in the home, and the times when Val was in touch, even recently, to let us know when someone was unwell. It’s a long time since we watched helplessly as David slipped away, cared for at St Christopher’s. There was the memorable service including the Metropolitan Police Choir. We’re sorry we can’t be with you for Val’s thanksgiving service, but give thanks as we will continue to remember her. …

Catherine Baldwin

It was such sad news to hear about Val’s passing. We struck up an online friendship at a family funeral many years ago (either my Aunty Muriel or Uncle Alec Smith…I’m not sure which). We conversed through e-cards and messages at Christmas and Easter ever since then and it was always lovely to catch up. Val was hoping to make it to dad’s 90th birthday in Watford in Nov ’21 but sadly couldn’t make it in the end. We offer our heartfelt condolences…with love and best wishes from Rev John Smith (my dad, Alec’s brother), myself (Catherine née Smith) and my husband Nick Baldwin, and my brother and his wife Stephen and Carole Smith…from Northampton, Watford and Whitstable, respectively. xx …

Diane Thomas

I met Val in the playground of Marian Vian nearly 40 years ago. We got chatting and she mentioned a friend she had met was into coss-stitching and asked if I was interested in joining a friday morning sewing group. So began a regular Friday sewing session with people dropping out and new people joining. Sewing at Vals also meant some very nice cakes along with the coffee. Val and I also got involved with the school, helping out with summer holiday club and other crafty stuff with Val being the brains behind a lot of things we did.  Playgroup at Elm Road was the next thing, where we worked together for a few years.  I met a lot of friends through Val and it was only covid that put an end to our friday sewing sessions, although we have still managed to get together for birthdays and other times for a meal at the Carvery. If it hadnt been for Val I wouldnt know half as many lovely people and I wouldn’t be able to cross stitch. I still havent really come to terms with the fact that I wont be seeing her again. She will be greatly …
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