Bench in memory of Claire Tavener unveiled in Nailsea
PUBLISHED: 06:57 07 February 2019 | UPDATED: 09:24 07 February 2019
(C)2016 Jeremy Long / JCLPhotography, all rights reserved
A memorial bench has been unveiled in Nailsea for a hugely popular mother-of-two who was murdered last year.
Claire Tavener, aged 27, was killed at her home in Brendon Gardens, by her 45-year-old husband Andrew Tavener last January. He is serving a life sentence.
The couple had two sons – Rory, aged seven, and Blake, aged four – who are now being raised by Claire’s parents Steve and Sarah Willmott.
Her mum and dad wanted to put up a lasting tribute to Claire where her family and friends can gather to remember her.
Steve, Sarah, Rory and Blake invited people to the official opening of the bench on Saturday and more than 50 people turned up to mark the occasion.
Steve said: “We thought it would be nice if we had somewhere for her friends to go to meet and have a chat.
“We just wanted something for her because we haven’t got a grave or anything to visit.
“She grew up here. She used to work at The Grove and the Ring O’ Bells so it’s a place she knew well.
“We’d like to thank The Grove who were brilliant and laid on food for everyone.”
The bench is located at The Grove Sports Centre and Social Club, in St Marys Grove, and was jointly funded by Steve and Sarah and Nailsea Town Council.
Claire, who grew up in Nailsea, was known and loved by so many people and her family has been overwhelmed with the huge outpouring of support since her death.
Her friend Laura Tyler started a fundraising appeal for her sons which has raised more than £18,000 so far.
Friends have organised a charity football match and fun day, a race night and celebration of her life to raise money for her family.
Steve said: “We’re really quite touched by all the support we’ve had from her friends.
“As soon as it happened we found out how popular and loved she was because all her friends have done so much and they continue to help us with the boys.
“The whole community has come together.
“It’s difficult to put into words what it has meant to us.
“She was very well loved.”
To donate to the appeal, visit www.gofundme.com/claires-little-family