By Yvonne Robinson, Funeral Arranger, Mayfields
I first met Paddy when I started working at Mayfields woodland burial site about 6 months ago, but he’s visited for several years.
He’s always struck me as a special cat who seems to have a sixth sense to know when he’s needed. Sometimes we won’t see him for a few days, but he always turns up when there’s a funeral happening and seems to instinctively know which mourner needs him most. He brings so much comfort and his favourite place during the services is on a seat on the front row.
People come to us when they’re going through their worst times, but Paddy walks in and the mood in the room changes. He’s our mascot.
A few months ago, the PR team from 1 Angel Square came to see us and use our space for a photo shoot. Like everyone who meets Paddy, they fell in love with him straight away and thought that public would like to hear more about him and his work.
We can’t believe the reception Paddy’s received from the press – he’s a star. There have been over 160 articles published about him, reaching over 100 million people! As well as lots of pieces about him in local publications like the Liverpool Echo. He’s also captured the attention of the national media with a whole page spread on page 3 of the i newspaper, pieces in the Daily Mail, Mirror, The Sun, Daily Star and The People. He even got a mention on ITV Granada news as a top story of the day.
Paddy’s owners live locally, and they’re so proud. They want him to be more famous than grumpy cat! He still has a way to go but there’s more media interest in the pipeline, and we’ve already noticed that people are asking if Paddy’s here when they come in to talk to us about a funeral plan or arranging a service. Mourners coming here for services are also looking out for him or asking after him.
Paddy’s fame has helped local people know where we are, and what we’re up to. It’s been great as at Mayfields we offer so much more than just a church service. We have facilities on site to do a service, burial, or wake along with burying or scattering of ashes. The kettle is always on if anyone wants a chat and a cuppa and we always and try to fulfil people’s unique wishes and requests during services.
Last week, we held a funeral with dogs attending and a horse drawn hearse. Of course, Paddy attended which made it even more special.
Mayfields is a beautiful, peaceful woodland site with amazing views across the River Mersey, I feel privileged to work here and of course Paddy just makes it perfect.