Tribute to Jean Palmer

  |  Published: Apr 3rd 2015

Jean Palmer was born in 1928 near Buckingham and spent her early years in North Bucks, an area she loved deeply. She attended the Aylesbury Grammar School and thereafter trained as a draughtsman in local government.
Jean met her husband Gerald in 1952 through a work colleague in the Aylesbury office where they both worked. In July 1957, they came to live in Weston Turville and were overjoyed to find a house next door to a farmyard as both she and her husband were raised in village communities and it felt like they were coming home.

Jean and Gerald had two children, Mark born in 1960 and Timothy born in 1964. When Jean left work to start the family she missed the social contact at work, so she went on to join every committee in the village that would have her as she felt she should contribute to the local community she was so proud to live in.
Over the years Jean was an ardent fundraiser for the village recreation areas, and was instrumental in raising funds for the provision of sports equipment. She was also a key campaigner in getting the tennis courts built for the local Youth Club to use and her enthusiasm to inspire others was always on show. Jean was also one of the founding members of the Weston Turville Parent-Participating Playgroup, something she was extremely proud of, as this was a first in Buckinghamshire at the time.

The Weston Turville Village Pantomime starring the “Weston Turville Players” was launched in the 1990s and went on to perform for 15 years. Jean wrote all the light hearted and rhyming scripts and the children in the village were offered parts if they showed any interest. This of course ensured there were full houses every year with a favourite Dame making his annual appearances – something all the villagers looked forward to, whilst driving Jean around the bend as he changed the script whenever he forgot his lines.

Jean enjoyed handicrafts immensely and went on to set up the Annual Village Craft fair held at the Village Hall. This brought many people from outside of the village and many of the exhibitors and attendees went on to become lifelong friends with Jean. Jean was also a very competent gardener and flower arranger, and she organised the flower displays at the Village Church for many years. She would always be disappointed if she did not win at least 3 rosettes at the annual horticultural show which she always entered into with great enthusiasm.

In her later years her confinement to a wheelchair never dampened her joy of life, in fact she did everything she ever wanted to do, but people just had to mind their feet as she would often roll over them in her keenness to carry on as normal. She was always surrounded by cats, and even a beloved dog at one stage, which all rode around on her wheelchair to avoid being run over themselves.

Jean’s sons Mark and Timothy and her grandchildren Hayley and Richard survive her and are immensely proud of all she achieved in her very active and happy life. She will be missed by the family and all that knew her and the village will find it hard to replace such a dominant player in their local community.

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