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Tributes for resort's lady of flowers

PUBLISHED: 21:06 08 May 2002 | UPDATED: 11:53 03 March 2010

TRIBUTES have been paid to the founder of Felixstowe's horticultural society and for many years the driving force behind the resort's flower show.

Winifred Williams, who was also a judge for the Felixstowe in Flower competitions, has died at the age of 86.

TRIBUTES have been paid to the founder of Felixstowe's horticultural society and for many years the driving force behind the resort's flower show.

Winifred Williams, who was also a judge for the Felixstowe in Flower competitions, has died at the age of 86.

Gardening expert Mrs Williams started the Felixstowe and District Horticultural Society in 1979 after being astonished that a town of its size did not have a group dedicated to sharing its love and knowledge of flowers.

She called a meeting at the public library and there was such a great response that a society was formed that night.

Mrs Williams was chairman of the group for 19 years and helped get the society's annual show – now an important event in the resort's calendar and one which has grown and grown over the years – off the ground.

When she stood down as chairman, she became president of the society.

She helped Felixstowe Town Council as an honorary judge of the Felixstowe in Flower competitions, touring the town to judge residents' gardens, pubs, businesses and homes for the elderly.

Her garden of her home – she lived in Garrison Lane for many years and later Rosemary Avenue – was packed with flowers, and she enjoyed visiting gardens around the country, with her favourites being the RHS gardens at Wisley, Compton Acres near Bournemouth, and the Lime Kiln Rosarium at Claydon.

Friend Marion Wyndham-Lewis, who also worked for Mrs Williams, was with her when she died.

"She collapsed in front of me and I called 999. She was not breathing properly, and I could tell it was serious. I dealt with the police and the coroner," she said.

"Winifred was the kindest person you could come across – she would do anything for anyone.

"She did a lot for Felixstowe in founding the horticultural society and I am sure many people will thank her for all the work she did with that, and she will be sorely missed."

A funeral service for Mrs Williams, who had no surviving family, was held at Ipswich Crematorium.


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