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My George is still watching over us

PUBLISHED: 12:29 07 July 2001 | UPDATED: 10:18 03 March 2010

WHEN a Whitton couple stumbled across an old watch, they had no idea that it would lead to an emotional reunion and bring comfort to a widow. While time is often renowned for keeping people apart, this amazing tale of coincidences shows that it can also be responsible for bringing people together.

WHEN a Whitton couple stumbled across an old watch, they had no idea that it would lead to an emotional reunion and bring comfort to a widow.

While time is often renowned for keeping people apart, this amazing tale of coincidences shows that it can also be responsible for bringing people together.

Lolly and David Jay of Byron Road picked up the gold watch, which was caked in mud, while they were out walking in the Whitton Church Lane area two weeks ago.

Little did they realise that the watch was about to spark off an incredible set of coincidences that would set their minds whirling back in time.

They placed an advert in the Evening Star on June 27 stating that the watch, made by Garrards, had been recovered.

The paper found its way to the attention of former Ipswich resident Lilian Brame who now lives in Stoke-on-Trent.

Mrs Brame, 78, is the widow of George Thomas Brame - who had been presented with the watch 26 years ago for clocking up 49 years service at work.

Mrs Brame decided to travel down to Ipswich to collect the watch that belonged to her beloved late husband and was stolen in a burglary before their wedding in 1980.

But it turned out that Mr and Mrs Jay used to live next door to the Brames when they lived in Coleridge Road 16 years ago.

In an emotional reunion at the Evening Star offices in Lower Brook Street, it took just minutes for the realisation to dawn that Mrs Brame had known Mrs Jay when she was a little girl, living with her parents Frank and Toni Aguilar.

Mrs Brame said: "I just don't believe it – George is still with us and watching over us."

An overwhelmed Mrs Brame told how she had phoned her friend in Ipswich on the day that the advert had been printed in the paper.

She said: "My friend asked me what George's second name was and when I told her it was Thomas she said she thought a watch of his may have been found.

"I couldn't believe it."

The watch was presented to Mr Brame for working at Turners Leather Ltd for 49 years.

Had it not been for Mr and Mrs Jay, it could have remained buried forever.

Mrs Jay, 35, said: "Some friends of ours had dug it up in their garden in Whitton Church Lane and threw it over the fence.

"It had been lying there for a couple of days before we walked past and picked it up.

"We were going to throw it away because it was so full of mud but when we got the mud off we saw that there was an engraving on it and it was gold."

"We realised it would be of sentimental value and just wanted to get it back to the owner."

Sadly Mr Brame passed away nine years ago – the anniversary of his death fell on the week that the watch was unearthed.

Holding hands throughout the conversation with Mrs Brame, Mrs Jay told how she had always been painting when she was younger.

She said: "George made me a wooden easel so I could do my pictures on that."

"I am just so pleased that it was us who found the watch."

The Jays and Mrs Brame have now swapped addresses and promised to stay in touch.

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