Catholic Medical Quarterly Volume 71(4) November 2021


Nuala Ann Scarisbrick - Life’s chief animator

Nuala Scarisbrick1Nuala’s energy and drive were formidable. She did everything: fundraising, hosting supporters, going to meetings, starting Life’s national helpline, starting Life’s education programme, operations, PR (where she was particularly known for her precise use of language), all the while she and Jack were supporting pregnant girls by taking them into their home.

Nuala Ann Scarisbrick was born in January 1939. She worked as a teacher and married distinguished academic Professor John Joseph “Jack” Scarisbrick in 1965.

Nuala and Jack co-founded Life in 1970. The husband-and-wife team were the dynamic duo driving the charity all the way until they stepped down in 2017.Nuala and Jack

While Jack became the figurehead of the new charity, it was Nuala who did the day-to-day running of Life. For 30 years, she took a full-time but unpaid position as National Administrator. Jack described her as Life’s “chief animator.” Speaking of Nuala’s influence, he said:

“[Nuala] ran Life ... And [she] was amazing! Travelling all over the place, all over Europe, and addressing numerous meetings and founding the National Helpline. She was a leading figure on it for many years. Really without her, it would never have taken off as it did.”

Life co-founders Jack and Nuala Scarisbrick at the Life National Conference in Leamington Spa, 1977

With PopeNuala and Jack lived in Leamington Spa. They have two daughters, eight grandchildren, and nine great grandchildren with a tenth due imminently. For the CMA, we too give thanks for the great work of Nuala (and Jack) So many years of such generosity, building so many Life – houses and also enabling so many women to keep their babies is surely the work of Our Lord. May she rest in peace.