A son has paid loving tribute to a kind hearted woman who devoted 40 years of her life to raising cash for a Tolworth scout group.

Much loved Muriel Drury died after a battle with cancer at the beginning of the month aged 72, leaving behind a husband two children and three grand children.

Born in Edinburgh, she took refuge in Southampton during the Second World War before moving to Tolworth with her mother and sister.

Mrs Drury worked as clerk for an insurance firm in the city but her real passion was raising money for the 1st Tolworth scout group, now based at St Matthews School in Surbiton.

She got involved with the group when her son Stephen became a cub aged eight in the early 60s and was still helping out on jumble sales and Christmas fundraisers more than 40 years later.

Mr Drury, who was brought up in Tolworth but is now living in Portsmouth, described her as "the best mum anyone could hope for".

He said: "She always had time for people, would do anything for you and help people at a drop of hat even if she didn’t know them.

"You could not wish for anything more in a mum or as a person."

Mrs Drury enjoyed 53 happy years of marriage with Phillip Drury including several world cruises after retirement including a trip to Africa where they encountered Somali pirates.

Mr Drury said: "They came out of a concert on a cruise ship when they heard the sounds of shots fired and bullets flying.

"The security people told them to get back inside the boat but apparently the South African tourist started throwing chairs at them and fought them off."

"When we were kids they could not afford to get away, but after they retired they went everywhere and led very exciting lives."

Mrs Drury’s funeral will be held in Tolworth on the morning of March 21, for more information contact steve_drury@hotmail.com.