In loving memory of Joan Dora Peckham who sadly passed away on 1st January 2016
Joan Dora Peckham, only child of Cecil & Dora Dunstan was born on 31/7/1922 in Station Road, North Harrow, Middlesex. The family then moved to Priory Way, North Harrow where Joan lived until 1948.
Joan did very well at school, achieving multiple music certificates for piano playing and passing all her other exams. Joan would have been made head girl had she stayed on for another year but she left in order to pursue a career. While attending school, Joan made friends with a girl called Joan Warren who became a lifelong friend until she herself sadly and suddenly passed away in April last year.
Joan was very close to her father and enjoyed playing tennis and badminton with him. He also started to teach her to drive but sadly Joan's father was killed in WWII by a stray jettisoned German bomb that hit their house when she was only 18. As the family home had been demolished, Joan's boss, to whom she was a PA, arranged to have Joan and her mother evacuated to Blackpool for the rest of the war.
After the war, back in North Harrow when the family home had been rebuilt, Joan met her husband to be, Dennis, in The Ministry of Health in London where she worked. Dennis had been sent on an errand there by his employer, The Ministry of Works, and the rest as they say, is history.
After they married in 1948, Joan moved into Dennis's flat in Wood Green, London where they started their family. Being an only child, Joan would have loved to have had three or four children of her own but they were only able to afford just the two - Andrew & Gill.
In 1955 Joan & Dennis bought their first new home in Orpington, Kent where they spent many happy years with their children before moving to Cheltenham in 1966. This was due to Dennis's employers (Eagle Star Insurance) being part of a large operation to decentralise many big companies from the City of London. The family settled in Leckhampton where Joan lived happily for over 50 years. During this time she took a part time job in the Accounts office of the then Gloucestershire Dairy and Creamery Ltd in Imperial Lane which she kept for 19 years. While she was there she made some long lasting friendships, one being Enid Clark and her husband Fred. Joan and her family had also built up good relationships with their neighbours, David & Brenda Paine, Alan & Shirley Wood, John & Eve Smith and Colin & Diane Scott who all helped and looked out for Joan & Dennis in recent years as they became older.
Joan inherited her mother's creative talents and was rather gifted in arts and crafts which is something that she has passed onto Andrew & Gill. Joan used to make leather gloves and belts with her mother in the early days and later in life went on to complete many tapestries which she had framed and had one made into a footstool of which she was very proud. Joan's talents also included sewing and knitting and she made most of her own and Gill's clothes when Gill was a child. Joan taught herself to cook and loved cooking until she was unable to do it anymore due to the de-habilitating disease, Osteoporosis. Joan also loved gardening and was very proud of her lovely garden of which she was very sad to have to leave last year.
Due to Joan's worsening Osteoporosis she had a short hospital stay last February and then she moved into Sandfields Care Home in April. The staff got to know her quite well and they fondly described her as a sweet lady with a very strong character. Joan was never afraid to put the staff in their place and knew if anything in her room had been moved an inch, or if something had not been done properly!