February 17th was not only Family Day, it was also a surprise birthday tea for Vicki Pickup of Southampton at the Chantry Centre.
Family and friends gathered to celebrate at the Centre which, said long-time friend Sybil Mercer, “would not exist if it weren’t for Vicki. She saw a need in the community and had a vision to see that the building could provide the answer.”
In 1990, Pickup (then Cooper) was a Southampton Town Councilor. She learned of a building, that was part of the Breakers Lodge Hotel and owned by local resident Marnie Cammidge, and that was available to be moved. Pickup talked to the-then Council and convinced them to buy it and move it. When moving day came in 1991, she personally walked the building up High Street to where it is now located on Grey Street as a popular seniors’ centre.
Pickup said she was completely surprised at the party arranged by her two daughters, although the entire family, including grandchildren, and her friends were all in on the surprise.
Long-time friends, Pickup and Mercer are very involved at the Centre, with Mercer as past-President and with both of them heading up the annual Hookers’ rug hooking school.
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