Tributes have been paid to Burnham-On-Sea resident Andrew Bridgewater who has sadly died at the age of 36 this week after suffering heart failure.
As a resident in the town for 30 years, he was a familiar face who participated in many local groups and activities. Here, we look back at his life.
Andrew moved to Burnham at the age of 6 and became heavily involved with the local junior football team with his father, Robin Bridgewater, who ran the team for many years.
Andrew also spent endless hours playing tennis at Burnham’s Avenue Tennis Club and, as an adult, he played and umpired for West Huntspill Cricket Team. He also played and managed King Alfred’s football team.
He was also a committee member of the Highbridge District Skittles League, playing for The Little Acorns.
Andrew worked for Highbridge’s Woodberry Brothers and Haines for many years before moving employment to a logistics firm in Avonmouth.
In 2013 Andrew’s ability to play football ended when he unexpectedly suffered a heart attack and stroke, at the age of 29.
Andrew was also diagnosed with a rare Liver Disease (PSC), and later Heart Failure in December 2018.
He was under the care of the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham and was due to be assessed for a combined Heart and Liver Transplant during the lockdown. Andrew never complained about his illnesses, he was one of the most positive and inspirational people anyone could ever meet.
Andrew sadly passed away at home peacefully on the evening of Saturday 11th April, from heart failure.
His widow, Amy, says: “It was not expected – myself and the children (5 and 18 months) had moved as Andrew was required to shield himself, being at the highest risk of Covid-19.”
“Andrew is now at peace and his fight is over. As a family we are grateful to Weston General Hospital Stroke unit, Musgrove Heart Failure Team, the Bristol Heart Institute and the Centre for Rare Diseases at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham. At some point we hope to arrange local fundraisers to say thank you properly.”
Due to the current circumstances (funerals being limited to 10 people and self isolating at all times) the family have decided not to hold a funeral but will have a day in celebration of Andrew’s life with friends and family when time allows – this is what he would have wanted!.
Amy adds: “We would welcome everyone to raise a toast to Andrew in celebration of his amazing life at 5pm on Friday 24th April when he will be presented for cremation.”
“We are so thankful for the messages and support from people across the town and afar.”
“Andrew was an amazing Son, Brother, Uncle, Husband and Daddy but above all, a friend to everyone that met him.”