A SPECIAL exhibition has been held in honour of a former mayor of Knutsford who was diagnosed with dementia 10 years ago.

Jenny Holbrook, 90, has been living at a care home in Wrexham since her health deteriorated during the first lockdown.

Jenny Holbrook

Former Knutsford mayor Jenny Holbrook

Her sister, fine art painter Angela Scott, teamed up with ceramist Caroline Pearce to host the event in the studio of her Shropshire home.

The talented artist wanted to show her gratitude to staff at Hillbury Care Home for their dedication.

Angela sold 10 paintings, raising more than £3,500 for Alzheimer's Research and Caroline donated £525.

Angela, 78, said: “Jenny was a very active woman, she was mayor of Knutsford four times. It was so interesting to hear about what she had achieved over those years.

Copy pic from Cheshire LIfe of Jenny Holbrook as mayor of Knutsford

Copy pic from Cheshire Life of former mayor of Knutford Jenny Holbrook

“It was very touching and quite emotional for me to meet the current mayor Cllr Stewart Gardiner and Cllr Jan Nicholson, at the event.

"Cllr Gardener wore his ceremonial chain for Jenny so that it could help bring back some memories.

Jenny Holbrook, as mayor of Knutsford, with Princess Margaret in 1992

Jenny Holbrook, as mayor of Knutsford, with Princess Margaret in 1992

“Jenny, I could see, really enjoyed it. Her lovely next door neighbour Kate came along and there was faint recognition there.

“I was also absolutely delighted to be exhibiting in public again.

"I’ve not been able to show my work for such a long time.

“I didn’t know how well it would be received but it was amazing.

Jenny Holbrook, former mayor of Knutsford

Jenny Holbrook, former mayor of Knutsford

“It was wonderful to see so many of Jenny’s former colleagues come along.

"Jenny is one of many people suffering with this wretched disease and it would be wonderful if they could find a cure. You hear more and more people succumbing to dementia."

Angela is making a donation towards a concert at the home.

"I think music is important for dementia therapy, it lights something up in them," she said.

“The home is absolutely thrilled."

Jenny was taken to the exhibition by care home manager Cindy Clutton, who said: “Staging the exhibition was a wonderfully generous gesture by Angela who is a fantastically talented and sought after artist.

“It was hugely appropriate that she was raising money for Alzheimer’s Research which is a cause close to her heart.

“The arts are a part of our daily life, whether that’s our regular art classes or music, so the contribution from Angela will be put to very good use.

“The arts enrich the lives of our residents and staff and has a positive impact on the quality of life and wellbeing.”

Until her illness, Jenny lived an active life and was a former England Reserves lacrosse player and Cheshire County tennis player.

Jenny Holbrook, front row second from right, as member of the north of England Lacross team in 1948/49

Jenny Holbrook, front row second from right, with the north of England Lacross team in 1948/49

She wrote a book on the Art of Movement and Dance based on the Laban movement and taught all her life.

Angela, who has two sons, studied fine art and pottery at Manchester College of Art and Design.

Knutsford Guardian:

Jenny Holbrook as a member of the north of England lacrosse team in 1948/49

Her large watercolour paintings, which reflect the beauty of nature of Wales, have been exhibited across the UK and won countless prizes.

Watching her sister’s decline has brought great pain and sadness so she she wanted to do something positive to help raise awareness of the disease.

Angela added: “On my recent visit, I was able to talk to Jenny about Knutsford and she was very content. It was a chapter in her life when she was very happy.

"It’s such an important thing for me to see her happy and safe and being well cared for. It takes a whole stress off my shoulders.

“Cindy was so kind on her day off to bring Jenny across to be part of the day, that meant so much to me.

“I really hope the exhibition has raised awareness of this disease.

"That’s what I wanted to do, to see how I could help. Everyone I talked to had somebody in their family or a relation impacted by dementia, it affects so many people and it really brings it home.”