Mums hope for park bench in loving memory of Rachel

Katie Carney, fourth from left on the back row, with the group of friends hoping to install a bench in memory of their friend Rachel
Katie Carney, fourth from left on the back row, with the group of friends hoping to install a bench in memory of their friend Rachel

A group of mums are hoping to install a new park bench in memory of their friend who died recently, aged 30.

The group of eight friends want to install the bench in the Memorial Gardens, Newmarket, in memory of Rachel Whitley, who died on August 28.

Rachel was a member of the group who would meet at the park every Thursday, for more than a year.

She died in her sleep on August 28, leaving her husband, Sean, and sons Reece, six, and Leon, four.

The friends went along on August 31 for the final Party in the Park event in her memory.

“Rachel was the loveliest and kindest person you could ever meet,” said friend Katie Carney, 28, from Newmarket.

“It came as a shock to us all and we still don’t know why she was taken from us. We are all devastated.

“Rachel was a beautiful soul and we would like to install a bench under a tree in the park, where we would meet each week.

“It was her favourite spot and we’ve asked the town council if this would be possible.”

The Party in the Park event on August 31 was the final event for the summer season.

Hundreds of families visited the series of activity days, arranged annually by Newmarket Town Council.

Events and activities this year included bouncy castles, a magic show and a teddy bears’ picnic.

The Mayor of Newmarket, Cllr Andy Drummond, said: “I was very sad to hear of the friends’ loss and am happy to champion their wish.

“I have forwarded the idea to the community services committee to discuss as the next stage.”