Why Irene Kelly has written her second book #hospiceheroes

Published on: 20/03/2014

wirral_hospice_irene_kellyIrene Kelly started volunteering for the Hospice in 1997 shortly after her brother-in-law died here. She said that the nurses had cared so well for him she just wanted to give something back.

She pounded the pavements and knocked on doors asking people to support the Hospice by taking part in its weekly lottery. Irene loves meeting people and raising money for the Hospice so it was the perfect role for her. Come rain or shine she has been out there, and mostly in the wind and rain!

Irene is embarrassed to call herself a writer, she sees herself as more of a ‘scribbler’. She’s been scribbling for a long time, and used to write poems for colleagues to put in birthday cards. Her first book, ‘Tea in a Jam Jar’ (published in 2010 £7.50) came about after she began researching her family tree about 25 years ago. It helped jog her memory of events related to her family members. Irene’s daughter Tracey encouraged her mum to put pen to paper so that the memories and funny stories could be there for her grandchildren to read. Irene has four children, three grandchildren and is about to be a great grandmother for the first time!

Her second book, ‘Act Soft And I’ll Buy You A Coalyard’ has just been released (£6.99). It’s a collection of her own and other people’s memories of growing up in the area.

Irene was interviewed on BBC Radio Merseyside by Sean Styles, which aired on Tue 18 Mar. Her interview is available to listen to until Mon 24 Mar.

As well as being kept very busy with her children and grandchildren, she also has a dog, Pebs, who is 16 years old and needs lots of walking. She loves Rock ‘n’ Roll music but also some of the crooners like Frank Sinatra. Irene loves visiting Ireland and Scotland and has a caravan in Wales that she tries to get away to when she can.

Her next project is trying to find out about her nan’s early life. She knows that she was married in 1912 at the age of 16 but any information from her birth to then is a complete mystery. So this is something Irene is keen to explore further.

Irene is an inspiration and always keep us entertained when she comes into the fundraising office to bring in her lottery tickets. To meet Irene in the flesh she can often be found in Firtrees restaurant in Clatterbridge hospital promoting the Hospice’s lottery. She will also be signing books at Waterstones in Birkenhead on Sat 22 Mar, at 12pm.

‘Act Soft And I’ll Buy You A Coalyard’ is on sale in:

  • Waterstones, Birkenhead
  • Garden Centre, Port Sunlight
  • Carr Farm, Moreton
  • Oxton bookshop
  • Hospice gift shop (on site at the Hospice)

If you would like us to reserve a copy for you or post one out, please ring 0151 343 0778 to make arrangements.

Thank you Irene for everything you have done and continue to do, you’re definitely one of our Hospice Heroes!

Author: Teresa Nightingale