Mary Ness, a stalwart of the Leeds Library has died aged 87. She joined the Library in 1992 having bought share number 382 in the days when it was still a proprietory library and before it became an open charity in 2008. Mary was a committee member from 1997 and continued as a Trustee of the charity until 2017. She was also one of the select group of library members who made loans to it to assist the purchase of the new building. She was a forthright member of the Library’s book group and was never reticent at expressing her views on books being read, or, indeed, on her fellow members.
By profession she was a nurse and it was at a Leeds hospital that she met her husband, anaesthetist Alan Ness from whom she was eventually divorced. Their two sons are both medics. I very much enjoyed her company and she was a very convivial lunch companion until her advancing arthritis inhibited her movements and latterly forced her to be housebound. Mary was a voracious reader until, latterly, as her eyesight deteriorated, she was unable to cope with print. This and her immobility hugely frustrated and depressed her, even to the point of considering making use of Dignitas.
Her peaceful death at home is a fitting end to a full, practical life, committed to causes she enjoyed and supported.