It was with great sadness that we received the news that Mike Holland had passed away on 7th January 2020. Mike had been involved with Andover and District Mencap since the 1980’s, his daughter Sally was born with learning disabilities which was how the family started their long association with the charity.
Mike was involved in many things for us, a long-time trustee including two spells as chairman in 1995 – 1998 and again 2008 to 2010. Apart from the duties of trusteeship, he was a voluntary driver of the minibus around Whitchuch and Overton, transporting our members to clubs and the college. He supported fundraising events and made time to help whenever he could. Throughout his time as a trustee he offered a friendly ear and mentoring to many new trustees and chairs.
Mike was someone who was passionate about the issues of independence, quality services and opportunities for people with learning disabilities. When we opened Dene Court as a facility to coach independent living and then enable people to move on into a supported living property. Sally was among the first to become a resident and later moved on to a supported living property in the local community.
Since Mike retired as a trustee, he was still a regular visitor to The Wellington Centre for events and he and Muriel were frequent visitors to Tuesday lunch at Duke’s Café.
Over the many years of Mike’s involvement with the charity both as a board member and a friend, he was always someone you could rely on to be thoughtful and helpful, a good sounding board, measured in his words, enthusiastic and fun. He always had a ready smile and twinkle in his eye, he was a gentleman in the true sense of the word. He was much loved and shall be sorely missed by his Andover and District Mencap family. Our sincere condolences go to his wife Muriel, Children Nikki and Andrew and their families.