Pamela Flowerdew: Norfolk bowler with family tradition of church service

Norfolk's first women's bowls umpire and a leading member of her church community, Pamela Flowerdew, has died peacefully aged 82 at her home.

She followed the family tradition of service to the church was parish steward of St Mary the Virgin, Diss, for several years.

Born at Dickleburgh, she was the only surviving daughter of her father, who was churchwarden for more than 50 years. She married Richard in June 1951, who was a churchwarden at Yaxley for many years before they moved to Diss.

She and her husband became founder members of Diss Indoor Bowls Club in the early 1960s and rapidly she became a very good player, firstly for her club. She represented her county and later became a county selector. Then she went on to become an umpire both locally and at county level and for many years was the only women's bowls umpire in Norfolk and also East Anglia.

However, the church was always central to her life and she became parish steward in September 1981 as well as her other duties as a catering officer in charge of organising activities. A long-standing member of the parochial church council, she organised the flower arranging rota for many years and was always willing to spend time encouraging others to share her interest.

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She played the piano, which also helped with the entertaining side of church activities and also gave talks on behalf of the Mother's Union to groups in the district for many years.

The vicar, the Rev Tony Billett, said that she was a charming lady and keen member of the church community, who was also a very good flower arranger.

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She is survived by her husband, Richard. She leaves two sons, Bob, who is a national broadcaster and author on organic gardening, and Martin, who is vicar of in a parish in Cheshire. She leaves four granddaughters and a grandson, which includes two sets of twins.

A funeral was held at the Parish Church of St Mary the Virgin, Diss, on February 28.

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