Philip Ollerenshaw: A selfless man who would work tirelessly to help his community
A COMMUNITY leader who helped transform a Derby park, making it a popular and attractive green area, has died aged 69.
After Philip Ollerenshaw retired, he decided to become an active part of the Alvaston community.
He joined the Alvaston Park Friends and soon became its chairman, overseeing a range of improvements at the site.
On Saturday, he died of lung cancer, just two years after overcoming oesophageal cancer.
Lisa Ollerenshaw, 45, paid tribute to her dad. She said: "He was the kind of man who would do anything to help anyone. He was always very kind and had a good sense of community spirit.
"I suppose, when he retired, he might have put his feet up but neither he nor mum wanted him to. So he got involved and got a lot of pleasure from helping Alvaston."
Mr Ollerenshaw lived in Denstone Drive with his wife, Joan. Along with Lisa, they also had another daughter, Sarah, 43.
After a career working first at Qualcast, and then at ASG, in London Road, Derby, Mr Ollerenshaw retired aged 65.
Lisa said: "He went along to a meeting of the Alvaston Park Friends and joined the group. He wanted to be involved in revamping the park."
In 2008, the park's BMX track was upgraded to national standards by Derby City Council's Cycle Derby team, thanks to an £85,000 grant from Sport England. In 2010, a £700,000 cafe and pavilion, including football changing rooms, a cricketers' club and a ranger's office was opened.
Supporting all these changes and helping to bring them to people's attention was the Alvaston Park Friends.
In April 2008, Mr Ollerenshaw was diagnosed with oesophageal cancer and was told he would need surgery. He was given a 10% chance of survival but managed to recover and was given the all-clear. But he then developed lung cancer.
At the weekend, the group helped to organise an astronomy event to coincide with the BBC's Stargazing Live.
Lisa said her father was sorry to have missed it.
She said: "It was the sort of thing he loved, being among his local community.
"He loved to spend time looking for newts and toads in the pond in the park as well and joined in litter picks."