Tim and Erica came to Sibford in 1976 on Tim's appointment as Rector. With their two boys Peter and Andrew and later James they first occupied a house in Barley Close until the present Rectory was built in the early 1980s. Despite the demands of her growing family, Erica supported Tim in his Benefice duties in every possible way.
Erica had been trained, prior to her marriage, as a nurse, undergoing her training at the Radcliffe Infirmary in Oxford. In 1985 she took up the post of part-time surgery nurse in the Sibford surgery, a position she held until her retirement in 2013. For all this time she was a much loved and popular member of the surgery staff.
In the early 1980s Erica helped to reinstate the Cub Scouts which had not been active in Sibford since the end of the war. For some years she occupied the post of Akela, being an important influence on the many young members from Sibford. She regularly attended Scout Camp, which she particularly enjoyed, and the discussions well into the night round the camp fire.
Tim was an accomplished organist and when he started a Benefice choir in 1987 Erica with a lovely soprano voice became a founder member, assiduously attending all Friday night practices and every event at which the choir performed. She continued as a regular choir member right up to the time of her death.
Erica had been a member of the Parochial Church Council for many years and this she continued after Tim's death, being appointed as Churchwarden soon after Tim's successor, Ronald Hawkes, was appointed. For most of this time Erica was the PCC representative on the Deddington Deanery Synod.
Erica was an active supporter of the Friendship Club, the Sibford Society and the Fielding Day Centre, as well as all church events and would always be a sometimes tirelessly competitive contributor to the Horticultural Society show. She also took various parts in the Sibford Millennium Pageant. When her sister Pam sadly died in 2004, Tim and Erica made a home in the Rectory for her invalid brother in law John and his West Highland Terrier Meggie, who became a well-known personality in the village and at most church services, dying at a great age only weeks before Erica herself. Her ashes are by Tim’s and Erica’s.
Erica was a great enjoyer of all pastimes and one of her favourites was acting as an Arena Steward at the annual Blenheim Horse Trials and various other horse events in the district. She loved all animals (except mice and rats!) and was prepared to stand her corner from criticism for regularly feeding the badgers.
Erica very bravely bore the news of her own diagnosis, so relatively soon after Tim's own similar illness, and throughout was calm and uncomplaining. Her death leaves a large hole in her loving family and for all her many friends in the village and beyond.
We have been blessed to know her.