Tributes paid to devoted guide leader

WARM-hearted tributes have today been paid to a guide leader who was devoted to her community and young people.

WARM-hearted tributes have today been paid to a guide leader who was devoted to her community and young people.

Janet Bloomfield, who died after suffering a heart attack at her home in Larch House, Grange Road, Felixstowe, was well known for her involvement in the girl guiding movement for more than 30 years.

She was also a school dinner lady, lollipop lady and served as chairman of the parents and friends association at Causton Junior School in Felixstowe.

She leaves a husband Michael, sons William and Richard, and daughters Jacqualine and Joanne, and grandchildren Lauren, Ryan, Reece and Leo.

Her son Richard Guilder said: “She really enjoyed life and she loved being involved - she had a real heart for young people.

“Guiding was her life. I remember when we moved to Felixstowe the guides called her up and asked her to get involved because they knew she had been a guider when we lived in Maldon and are always desperate for leaders - she got back involved immediately.

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“She was happy and bubbly and we will all miss her very much.”

Barbara Durrance, one of the senior figures of the guiding movement in Felixstowe, said Mrs Bloomfield, 52, had served until recently as district commissioner, was leader of the 1st Walton Guides, was district international adviser, worked for the county as guide guider advisor, and was involved in the countywide co-ordination of events to mark guiding's centenary.

She was also founder of the Felixstowe guide depot for uniforms and resources, and was a member of the committee working to build a new HQ for guides at the resort.

“She had a very strong commitment - her mother had been a guide, her daughters were and her granddaughter is, and it was in her blood,” said Mrs Durrance.

“She was a lovely person and if someone felt rotten or had a problem they knew they could always go and talk to her and she would sit and listen and give you a hug.”

She was renowned in guiding circles for being able to start a great camp fire.

When Mrs Bloomfield moved to Felixstowe with her first husband Peter Guilder, they also ran the youth club at the Salvation Army.

A funeral service will be held at St John's Church, Orwell Road, Felixstowe, at 12.45pm on Monday .

Pay your tributes to Janet Bloomfield - write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

Panel:

THERE were tears and smiles as girls from the 1st Walton Guides got together for the first time since their leader Janet Bloomfield's death.

The girls looked through photographs of Mrs Bloomfield, chatting about their happy memories of her, and started work on a memorial book.

Her best friend Ruth Lewis, one of the unit leaders, said: “The girls were absolute bricks the whole night - they were fantastic.

“I know Janet was with me and helping me get through.

“She was the most wonderful best friend in the world and I will miss her forever.

“She had a massive sense of humour, always had a smile on her face, and had so much energy.

“She was always there for everyone - she would never say no to anyone.”

The guide unit is also planning to have a Janet Bloomfield Memorial Cup as part of next year's centenary events.

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