Former Ipswich Mayoress Shirley Risebrow dies suddenly

Shirley Risebrow (far left) was mayoress during The Queen's jubilee visit to Ipswich.

Shirley Risebrow (far left) was mayoress during The Queen's jubilee visit to Ipswich.

Former Ipswich mayoress Shirley Risebrow has died after collapsing in her car while being driven home along the A12 from Snape.

Mrs Risebrow, 69, of Glencoe Road in Ipswich was mayoress to her husband Richard in 2002/3 – during which time Ipswich was visited by Her Majesty the Queen during the Golden Jubilee.

Mr Risebrow said the couple were driving home last Wednesday evening when his wife collapsed from a heart attack. The cause of death was confirmed by a post mortem examination yesterday.

He said there had been no indication anything was wrong: “She had been very healthy, I don’t think she’d been to see the doctor in 15 years.”

The couple met in the early 1960s and married in 1965. Both were active in the trade union and Labour movement.

They moved to Ipswich in 1967 and have lived in the same house ever since.

Mr Risebrow said his wife was always very quiet: “She tended to hide her light under a bushel somewhat – but she really liked her year as mayoress, if she was here now she would say that was the best year of her life.”

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He said his wife was especially proud to have met The Queen at the Waterfront: “That was a really wonderful time – she loved that.”

The couple were keen members of the Salvation Army and her funeral will take place at the Salvation Army Citadel on Woodbridge Road at noon on January 7.

For many years Mr Risebrow ran the education department of the Co-op, and his wife played an active role in his work – especially working with the Co-op Juniors.

She was a talented cook – she made her own wedding cake and was in regular demand to bake for friends and family members.

She also had other talents – she made 124 Christmas Cards that were sent out by the couple this year.

Current Ipswich mayor Bill Quinton knows Mr and Mrs Risebrow well. He said: “Shirley was a lovely lady – always by Richard’s side – they were a great team.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with all the family, especially at Christmas.”

As well as her husband, Mrs Risebrow leaves two sons, Kevin and Stuart, daughters in law Janet and Tracey and three grandchildren.

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