Tributes have been paid to a well-known Burnham-On-Sea shop owner who has sadly passed away.

Rhonda Mills, 70, ran the popular Seabreeze Gallery and Gift Shop in Burnham’s Victoria Street with her family since 2005.

She also served as Secretary and Chairman of Burnham Chamber of Trade after several years’ involvement.

Born in Islington in April 1952, Rhonda spent her young life growing up in London where she met Paul her husband.

After getting married and having their first child they moved from London to Somerset for Paul’s work and a quieter life with their 3-year-old daughter Caroline. They had two more daughters before Rhonda went back to studying at college.

Rhonda then started work at British Cellophane as a lab technician, before moving to Bishop Fox’s for a more fulfilling role helping youngsters in the science labs.

Rhonda clearly got a lot of enjoyment out of helping young people as she went on to work at Cannington College as a food technologists for a number of years.

She stayed on at Cannington College, switching roles to working for Somerset Careers as a work placement assessor, making sure work experience settings were safe. Then in 2005 Rhonda decided to try something completely different and opened.

‘Seabreeze’ Gallery and Gift Shop with her daughter Lizzie in Burnham-On-Sea, selling local arts and crafts and fair trade gifts. Seabreeze has been run by three generations and is still going today run by Lizzie and youngest daughter Vicky.

During Rhonda’s time working in Burnham-on-Sea she spent time helping the Chamber of Trade as Secretary and Chairman, supporting numerous projects for the town centre. She was Chair from 2010-2012.

Rhonda managed to reach an important milestone earlier this year and celebrated her 70th birthday while reminiscing with family and friends.

Rhonda continued to enjoy life as much as she could, spending lots of time with her family, including her seven grandchildren making more lovely memories.

Rhonda gradually became weaker and sadly passed away in the early hours of 12th July. She will be sadly missed by the many people who knew her.

A spokesman for Burnham Chamber of Trade said: “Rhonda will be greatly missed. She always had a strong interest in Burnham town centre and supported many projects over the years to encourage trade and help local shops and businesses, taking a leading role on the production of our regular shoppers guide publications. Our thoughts are with her family at this time.”

Rhonda’s funeral is on Monday 8th August and anyone who would like to attend should call Seabreeze on (01278)783276 for further details.


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