Richard Pacey

RICHARD PACEY, who dedicated his life to helping other people and had a long career in the caring profession, has died aged 65 after a battle with cancer.

For 20 years he was chief executive of the Wilf Ward Family Trust, based in Pickering, until his retirement in 2006 at the age of 60.

By then, the Trust provided more than 70 service bases across the Yorkshire region supporting over 750 people with learning disabilities, and employing over 1,000 staff.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

He was originally appointed by the Trust’s founders, Wilf and Phyllis Ward, to help establish the newly formed charity and to oversee the development of their first respite service, Isabella Court, in Pickering, for people with learning and physical disabilities which opened in 1988.

He was born in 1946 in Peterborough, the youngest son of Frank Pacey, a foundry worker at Baker Perkins, and his wife Bertha, and brother to Paul, Mavis and Raymond.

He was educated at Fulbridge Road Infant and Junior School, and Lincoln Road Secondary Modern School, leaving at the age of 15 to work as an apprentice engineer at Peter Brotherhoods.

Five years later he became a workshop instructor for people with learning disabilities, which proved to be the start of his long career in the caring profession.

Mr Pacey moved to Sevenoaks in Kent in 1974 to become house father at Halsted Place Special Residential School and later worked in Tunbridge Wells as an assistant manager at a home for adults with learning disabilities.

In 1977, he moved to Scarborough to work as manager of Burnside Hostel and Day Centre, and it was from there he took up his appointment with the Wilf Ward Family Trust.

Mr Pacey was also actively involved in the Scout Movement for many years at both district and national level, and in the local community.

He was on the committee of Ryedale Mencap, was a member of Ryedale Voluntary Action, Scarborough Mencap, National Mencap, chairman of the board of governors of Welburn Hall School and chairman of the Trustees of George Edward Smart Homes. He was also a member of Scarborough/Ryedale Carers Resource, Middleton Village Hall committee and Pickering Musical Society.

He was appointed as a Justice of the Peace in 1991 working on the Scarborough Bench for more than 20 years and was a member of the Independent Monitoring Board for Full Sutton Prison.

In 2000 he was awarded an OBE for his service to the community, especially people with learning disabilities in Yorkshire.

He was a compassionate and inspirational man who dedicated himself to serving other people.

Mr Pacey is survived by Keith McKee, his partner of 23 years, his sister Mavis and brother Raymond. His brother Paul predeceased him.