Shrewsbury end of life charity patron dies aged 100

By Lucy Todman | Shrewsbury | News | Published: | Last Updated:

The patron of an end of life charity based in Shrewsbury has died at the age of 100.

Celebrating Henry's 100th birthday: Stephanie Waters, Omega Chatterbox (Team Leader); Henry Heath, MBE; Janet Wood, Omega; Linton Waters, Omega Chairman; Thomas Memery, Omega Director; Howard Rutherford, Omega Trustee.

Author and world bank note expert Henry Brereton Heath MBE, B. Pharm, M.F.C, F.P.C, F.I.F.S.T, made his name as an authority on flavour technology.

Mr Heath was born in Staffordshire and was patron of Omega, the National Association for End of Life Care.

He died at Swan Hill House Residential Home, Shrewsbury, on January 25.

Mr Heath began his association with Omega in July 2009 and served as a trustee before becoming a patron in 2015. A key focus of Omega’s work has been to support carers in later life, which is how Henry became involved in the charity.

Omega chairman Linton Waters said: “How sorry we were to hear the sad news. Henry was popular with colleagues and clients and always a serene presence. We shall all miss him.”

While managing a successful international career, Henry also cared for his wife at home.

Born at Congreve Manor and raised at Whiston Hall, near Penkridge, he joined the Territorial Army in 1938 before being commissioned into the North Staffordshire Regiment.

He was promoted to Captain and Adjutant in 1940. In 1941 he re-trained and was commissioned into the Royal Artillery continuing as Adjutant.


In early 1943 he was promoted to the rank of Major and posted to become Brigade Major of the 82 (West African) Division and saw active service in Burma. In 1946 he was mentioned in Despatches and was awarded the MBE.


After starting a pharmaceutical apprenticeship locally before the war, he went on to study pharmacy at Nottingham University College in 1948 and was president of the union. He graduated with a B. Pharm (London) in 1949 and was admitted as a Fellow of the Pharmaceutical Society the same year.

After graduating, he joined Stafford Allen and Sons in Long Melford, Suffolk, a Quaker family business manufacturing natural pharmaceuticals, essential oils, spice extracts and other food ingredients.


Mr Heath moved to Stafford Allen’s London headquarters as technical services manager in 1960 and became involved with the development of technical service facilities covering all aspects of the food industry throughout the world.

The next few years saw the company amalgamated with others to form a giant global flavours and fragrances company.

In 1973 he was made managing director of the company’s subsidiary in Canada and held that position until 1979 when he returned to the UK as marketing director (Europe). He retired in 1984 and set up a private consultancy in food ingredients.

During his business life, Mr Heath was actively engaged in writing and published three major books on flavour technology and chemistry. He wrote the Source Book of Flavors (1981) and was involved in lecturing, running symposia and writing technical articles in all the major counties where his company had factories or sourced raw materials.

In 1978 his wife became ill and the couple returned to Shrewsbury in 1986. He became involved with St Chad’s Church and spent time collecting and writing about world bank notes.

He cared for his wife until she died in hospital in 1999.

Lucy Todman

By Lucy Todman

Senior reporter for the Shropshire Star and Shrewsbury Chronicle based in Shrewsbury.


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