A beautiful lady with a beautiful soul!
Donate in memory of
In loving memory of Elsie Barbara Jean Gardner who sadly passed away on 25th January 2021 aged 98.
Elsie was born on 29th March 1922, the second oldest of her sisters, Lucy, Rene and Betty.
She was born in Stutton, Suffolk and grew up and went to school in Mistley. Whilst still a teenager, Elsie joined the Manningtree Salvation Army, where she first met and fell in love with Robert (Bob). When she left school Elsie worked in service before going onto a munitions factory as part of the war effort..
Bob was posted to India and Ceylon during the war, but when he returned he commenced his career with the Civil Service as a Tax Officer. Robert and Elsie were married at St Michaels Church, Brantham on March 23rd 1946. Initially Bob was posted to Bedford where they established their first home. Soon after Jill was born. A few years later Bob was posted to Norwich, where Elsie also worked in the Tax Office, and they established their second home in Hall Road before Helen came along. When Helen was 2 weeks old they moved to Munnings Road, Elsie got involved with St Francis Church, joining the Mothers Union and helping with the Over 60's club. Elsie kept busy by looking after the family and maintaining an immaculate home. She occasionally took part time work and spent a few years at Mr Lings fishmongers in Mousehold. Once the girls were well established, Elsie joined Norwich Union as a clerical assistant in 1969. This was a pivotal year, as they moved to their dream house in Stoke Holy Cross and their first grandchild Toby was born. Many happy years were spent at Stoke, with the family establishing their new home and enjoying many holidays with friends and family. The Algarve became a firm favorite for them both. Toby was followed by Guy, then Nia and then Thomas. Elsie and Bob loved their family, their friends, their garden and life in general. Sadly Bob passed away in 1991 and left a hole in everyone's hearts. Elsie supported by family, friends and the local church, continued life at Stoke and joined the flower club and the local Tuesday group. She loved life to the full and still enjoyed the thrill of going on holiday with trips to Crete, Scotland, Wales, France and Germany and two Cruises to Europe and Southern Ireland.
Elsie was very proud of her family and loved to tell her friends all about them, especially when great grand children arrived. She loved to receive photos of them and had a little gallery on a wall in the lounge. Her 90th birthday was a day of great celebration when family and friends popped in for drinks and natter! Sadly, not long after this event she began to show signs of forgetfulness and having difficulty with some daily activities. After having extra help at home it became clear that she could no longer continue to live there safely and she moved into Saxlingham Hall Nursing Home. Soon after a diagnosis of vascular dementia was confirmed. Saxlingham Hall was home for the next 4 years and the whole family and friends were welcomed there to enjoy visits, outings and Christmas lunches together. She loved going out in a newly purchased mobility van, christened the Nan Van, and enjoyed lunches out with the family shopping trips, outings to parks, the Cathedral, which generally ended with hot chocolate and cake!