Local Face: Liz Youens

  |  Published: Oct 1st 2011
Liz Youens

Liz was born during the war in 1942, at Great Kingshill and her mother always said that she should have had the Utility brand on her, as all goods were being made out of anything that could be used, like tea chests to make furniture were stamped with the utility sign!

At age 3 Liz started school at Prestwood Primary School and attended Little Kingshill School until aged 11, then changed to Great Missenden Church of England School. In 1955 they moved to Downley where her parents took over the licence of Le De Spencer Arms so she ended her education at Mill End Secondary School. Liz started work as an office junior and when the children came along, she took on hospital cleaning work until 1983. She then did a TOPS course to bring her up to date with office practices, having taken Maths & English O levels at Halton camp the previous year aswell as financial and cost accountingtogether with business studies.

She returned to office work till her retirementin 2008. Liz met her future husband in the pub when he came back to his home in Downley having completed his National Service in 1958. In 1963 Dick and Liz were married. In December 1966 they moved to Wendover together with their son Darren who was 6 months old, and in1968 Lorraine was born. Both children went through all 3 Wendover schoolsand during this time she helped with the Guides by going on camps and trainingc ourses. When Lorraine joined St.John’s, Liz became an auxiliary and was secretary for a number of years. Liz started to help out at the Wendover pool in 1976 doing administration and decided to learn to swim properly so joined Marge Donald’s class at Green Park and when she had become reasonably proficient, Marge asked some of them to go on a teacher training course as she wanted some help with after school sessions and completed her training in 1981 and started helping out at Green Park for Ann Chapman and Pat Lesingham.

By then Liz had become interested in ife Saving having had to do some very basic work whilst learning to swim. She joined the Green Park club and John Lesingham encouraged her to becomea lifesaving instructor. They also used to take groups of lifesavers to cover parts of the River Thames as safety cover in areas where there were parks, using small boats to patrol the area. Through this they also used to get a day a year to cover the pool at the Boat Show and in 1987 there was a try dive session available which she did, and that started her doing sub aqua lessons at Green Park. Having gradually worked her way through lots of training she became an instructor in1999 and is still diving and instructing. Liz had joined the early bird swimming sessions when the pool was still open air, as well as doing lifesaving duties for WSA. These sessions then continued after the major alterations were completed in 1997 when the new changing room area and the roof cover had been installed. Liz has helped Katrina Larkin with the early birds for a good many years now, and is still enjoying swimming every morning.

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