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Last Updated: Monday, 23 October 2006, 19:01 GMT 20:01 UK
'Frugal' minister left 2m legacy
Rev Albert Williams
The Rev Albert Williams served in the RAF after World War II
Hospitals, churches and charities are benefiting from a 2m legacy left by a west Wales minister who led a "simple and frugal" life.

Before his death in 2004, Reverend Albert Williams, of Llanwrda, Carmarthenshire, left instructions in his will to help good causes.

Friends say Rev Williams, who died aged 89, was a quiet man and people would never have guessed he was wealthy.

Nearly 700,000 is going to hospitals in Swansea alone.

The city's NHS trust said it was "delighted and extremely grateful" for the "generous" donation.

Around 400,000 will be spent on new cancer services and 240,000 on cardiac equipment.

Money has also been pledged to research treatment and relief of heart disease, cancer, blindness, multiple sclerosis and Alzheimer's Disease.

Rev Albert Williams
I don't think anyone would have guessed - he lived a simple and frugal life in the village
Reverend Adrian Legg

Causes outside of health to benefit include a park for youngsters in Llanwrda and the village hall.

Rev Williams was born there before moving away to become a curate, first in Bangor and then Llanbadarn Fawr, Aberystwyth.

He joined the Royal Air Force as a padre after World War II and then became a history teacher at the City of Coventry School in the Midlands.

He retired and returned to Llanwrda around 1980 and preached at churches and chapels in that area.

Rev Williams left instructions in his will that the money was to go to good causes.

A spokesman for his estate said the vast majority of the money would be spent in Wales and that he hoped it would encourage others to donate to local causes.

Reverend Adrian Legg, the vicar of Llanwrda, said: "I think everybody was very surprised that he left that amount of money to charity.

Llanwrda Church
Rev Williams retired to his home village of Llanwrda

"I don't think anyone would have guessed - he lived a simple and frugal life in the village.

"When he was fitter - when I first arrived here - he would help out, especially if I was away, and he would cover in other local churches from time to time when they were without vicars.

"Locally we have benefited greatly from what he left - some has come to my own church and also to another church - Capel Dewi - for restoration and re-carpeting."

The Alzheimer's Research Trust said Rev Williams' "generous gift" of 50,000 helped launch a research programme into whether oily fish could help slow the progression of Alzheimer's and lead to new treatments.

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11 May 05 |  Mid Wales
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