Final trip to bookies for town character

FOREVER fond of backing the gee-gees, an Ipswich great-grandmother is making one last trip to the bookies as she is taken on her final journey in a horse-drawn hearse.

By Jessica Nicholls

FOREVER fond of backing the gee-gees, an Ipswich great-grandmother is making one last trip to the bookies as she is taken on her final journey in a horse-drawn hearse.

Following the death of Ipswich character Doreen Godbold, 76, her daughter Nettie Frost, of Landseer Road is refusing to let her beloved mum go without a really special send off.

Tomorrow, Doreen will make her final trip to Coral bookmakers in Nacton Road on a horse-drawn carriage before slowly moving on to the Belvedere Road cemetery.

Doreen died on June 21 after a brave year-long fight against cancer.

Mrs Frost said: "She was a friend to everyone around here. Her door was always open."

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Doreen spent three months at St.Elizabeth's hospice and Mrs Frost said the staff there were second to none.

"The staff were devastated when she died and they said they would never forget her. Even the solicitor who met her for only three minutes said 'What a wonderful lady'," she added.

She collected dolls of every description but Doreen was best known for her love of horse racing and would walk from her Clapgate Lane home every day to Coral's in Nacton Road.

It was there that the people who worked there nicknamed her Ellie-May, for a reason that mystifies her daughter.

Doreen grew up in Melbourne and moved to Ipswich when she married Mrs Frost's dad Alfred in the 1940's. They had seven children, but Doreen also had two children in Australia.

One of those was her son Donald, who was taken from her when he was just six months old.

Amazingly he tracked her down seven years ago and their touching reunion was reported on the front page of the Evening Star. Sadly he died two years ago. As well as the eight remaining children, Doreen will be missed by an extended brood of 17 grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.

Mrs Frost added: "When she went into hospital the manager at the bookies sent her a betting slip saying, 'Life's a nag, times are hard, here's your special get well card.'

"She was so pleased with it she had it on her bed for weeks."

* The horse drawn carriage will leave Mrs Frost's house at 329 Landseer Road at 10.30am tomorrow and will stop outside Coral's bookmakers in Nacton Road.

It will then go along Queen's Way and Kings Way and via Heath Road make its way to the Old Cemetery church at the Belvedere Road cemetery for an 11.30am service.

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