A Tribute to BASIC’s Founder – Derek Gaskell

BASIC would like to pay tribute to Derek Gaskell on the sad news of his death aged 88. Derek was the founder of BASIC and the local family man with a vision for his wife, that became a charity for the people of Greater Manchester and beyond.

Derek and his wife Dorothy felt a personal need for somewhere like BASIC after her life-saving brain surgery at Salford Royal. She could not walk or talk and suffered deep depression, and for many years Derek supported her as she progressed through her recovery. It was 1983 and the traumatic experience of such a challenge inspired Derek to establish a registered charity ‘Neurological Research’.

Derek and the charity’s first employee Wendy worked for many years raising money and growing the charity to become the BASIC (Brain and Spinal Injury Centre) that is loved by so many today. The number of local people, employees, dignitaries and celebrities that have been part of that story is too many to count, but they have one thing in common – they played a part is making recovery from neurological injury more accessible and successful for thousands of people than it ever has been before. 

Derek had been ill with cancer since 2006, and leaves his wife, three children and grandchildren, who also benefitted greatly from his commitment to supporting others.

The Bolton News has published a short article about Derek with some quotes from his family, we have a book of condolences at the centre, and any donations in Derek’s memory can be made through the website.