Mildred Robb

Mildred Robb.

26th February 1917-28th April 2017


The Church hall was full on the afternoon of the 17th May for a service of thanksgiving for Mildred’s life. She had planned the  hymns and readings many years ago and it was especially good that Mandy Elmes was able to be present to officiate. The sermon was given by The Rev Graham Hadfield her son in law, and the Mersea Island Choir conducted by John Davies led the hymns and appropriately sang the Nunc Dimittis.


Mildred was born in the Sefton Park area of Liverpool, the 4th of 6 children born to Charles and Eva Henshall. Nora (number three and in her 102nd year) attended the service with all of Mildred’s girls (Sandra, Hilary, Joy and Ruth) accompanied by many of her 10 great grandchildren! The Henshall family home entertained many visiting preachers so it was small wonder that all 5 daughters married the clergy.  Mildred trained as a nurse in Birkenhead General Hospital, experiencing the ravages of German bombing there, and later as a midwife in Bristol. With a particular interest in the care of premature babies, she moved to Dublin to be Matron of a childrens home. She married the Rev Tom Wheeler, rector of St Lukes Dublin. Tom and Mildred with their 4 girls, moved to Belfast in 1956 where Tom was appointed Irish Secretary for the Bible Churchmens Missionary Society. Tom died in 1973, and Mildred, as a health visitor in communities ravaged by the ‘troubles’, worked across the baracades and barbed wire between the fighting communities and the embattled British troops who were trying to combat republican and loyalist terrorists. In 1976 Mildred married the Rev Jack Robb who had been a close friend of the family for some years. Jack after losing his wife had become blind.  As the extended family at this stage was scattered across England and Scotland, Mildred and Jack moved to Leyland. Jack died in 1981 after 5 happy years and Mildred moved to Colchester, where she threw herself energetically into the life of St Peters. From Charles May House and later from Eaglegate she managed many church activities including a women’s fellowship. In 1997, beginning to get local itchy feet again, an opening came in Mersea Court from where she became a very prominent Mersea citizen, and an energetic member of St Peter and St Pauls. Wednesday coffee mornings, Lent groups, house Communions, Blind Spot, reading groups  and regular trips to the bakery were among her many activities.

She was a very much loved great grand mother, an encourager to many who came to know her, and a remarkable Centenarian. Her favorite sayings always referred to being greatly blessed by God and were filled with thankfulness for her life, which has brought blessings on so many who came to know her.