Memorial service for Polly and Sita


A memorial service was held early this month for a ”treasured mother” and her four-year-old daughter who were killed in a tragic road crash.

Television producer Penelope ‘Polly’ Renton,40, and her daughter Rosita ‘Sita’ Renton were in Kenya when their car was hit by a lorry on a single track road. The car was cut in half, but miraculously Polly’s 12-months-old son Tristan and his nanny escaped uninjured.

The memorial service was held in Kirkapol Church on the Island which Polly loved and where the Renton family have had a house for many years. The minister, the Rev Robert Higham, said that Polly had enjoyed her holidays on Tiree and had first arrived on the island in her mother’s womb and that little Sita had already visited twice before the tragedy.

Polly’s parents, Lord and Lady Renton, heard Rev Higham tell the congregation that she had been a ”treasured part of a strong and loving family.” Her husband, Toby Fenwick-Wilson, who runs a safari guide business in Kenya, was also in the congregation along with little Tristan at the service on a Sunday night. At one stage the baby made a loud noise and everyone smiled as Rev Higham said: ” That is Tristan joining in the service.”

Polly had been living and working in Kenya for 10 years before the accident three months ago following a successful career in Britain as a TV producer. She was known for dealing with difficult subjects including documentaries on serious social issues.

In Kenya she taught people in the television industry how to produce programmes and worked with her journalist brother, Alex Renton, to make programmes on social issues .

Polly was the youngest of the five children of Tim Renton, the former Conservative government minister and his wife Alice, the author. She was educated at Windlesham House School, Roedean and Magdalen College, Oxford, where she read modern languages, rowed and played the violin. She worked with prostitutes and street children in Guatemala before threats to her life drove her out of that country.

Mr Higham said: ”As for Tiree, she loved the island. She loved sailing and all marine life, especially the dolphins. Polly and little Sita have left us with many precious memories which we will always cherish. We thank God for them.”

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