“Look to the morning and be assured that tomorrow, the sun will rise again”
Peacefully on the 22nd January at St Luke’s Hospice, surrounded with the love and care of her devoted family, Lucy aged 89 years.
Born in Stoneley Road, Crewe on Wednesday 29th February 1928 (a leap year) to her parents Joseph and Lucy Crawford, Lucy attended St Mary’s Primary School then moving to the Girls Grammar School.
After courting, she married Thomas Pointon and became a mum to Anne and John. Lucy was a devoted grandma of Ellen, James and Adam.
She will be loved and remembered by all who knew her.
Lucy will be received into St Mary of the Immaculate Conception Church, Crewe at 6pm on Wednesday 31st January. Her funeral requiem will take place on Thursday 1st February at 12noon followed by cremation.
Donations in Lucy’s memory are for the valuable work of The LATH who work with homeless people locally, and St Luke’s Hospice.
Lucy Kathleen Crawford was born on 29th February 1928 and was the youngest child and only daughter of Joseph and Lucy Crawford.
Her father had a smallholding which he worked alongside his regular job as a train driver.
Much of her childhood was spent helping on the farm, cutting hay and clearing ditches by hand.
At the age of 11 she passed the 11+ and went to Crewe Grammar school.
She hated school – it was war time and many of the teachers were elderly and unable to fight, and none of whom were exactly inspiring.
One of the most important lessons for girls was deportment where they marched round the gym with books on their heads being supervised by an elderly spinster with a cane.
It was the wartimes requirement to produce and grow your own fruit and vegetables that fostered Lucy’s life-long love for gardening. Flowers were a secondary interest as you couldn’t eat them. To this day most of the garden is given over to soft fruit, fruit trees and vegetables.
One of her last requests was for a new blackcurrant bush to replace one that is in “the wrong place”. As Lucy was the only one in the family who actually liked blackcurrants, so from now on along with the apples and pears that are given away there will be some squashed blackcurrants at the bottom of the bags.
Lucy’s Father was great friends with Canon Quinn who was the Parish priest in Crewe until Our Lady’s at Birkenhead was destroyed by a landmine in 1941. As a result, Lucy and her family helped Canon Quinn to rebuild the church and to provide help for the bombed-out residents of Birkenhead. They visited each other regularly, the last time being in January 1975 just after Lucy’s own Mother Lucy, who sadly had died in December 1974, and just a couple of weeks before Canon Quinn’s death.
After leaving school, Lucy worked for a time in McCutcheons chemist on the corner of Nantwich Road and Mill Street in Crewe. This was something she enjoyed immensely and it was quite a daring career choice for a young lady in the late 1940s.
In the early 1950s, Lucy was part of a group of enthusiastic dancers from St Mary’s who frequented St Michael’s Church Hall on Ford Lane as it had a sprung dance floor and Saturday evenings were often spent at “the Mikes” where she made many friends.
Sunday evenings were often spent walking around “The Old Park”. This “stroll” started at Weston Road, round the back of Crewe Hall and out onto the Alsager Road ending up at the Crewe Green roundabout. No small feat, no pun intended, considering she was wearing her best winkle picker shoes with 3-inch stiletto heels.
The Diocesan pilgrimage to Lourdes was an event that featured in Lucy’s family life. Her father went on the first pilgrimage after the war in 1950, no small undertaking considering that in those days even the drinking water had to be taken across the Channel in milk churns.
Lucy herself never went to Lourdes, it was probably too much of a reminder of her father. However, it meant a great deal to her when her daughter Anne and Grandson James made their first, of probably many pilgrimages, to Lourdes last summer. She enjoyed listening to the recordings of James playing the organ in St Bernadette’s and the Rosary Basilica. Something she listened to in her final hours at St Luke’s Hospice.
In July 1957 she married Tom, a marriage that was to last just over 60 years a landmark marked by a card from the Queen and an Apostolic blessing from the Pope. Interestingly, in the last letter she had from the kidney consultant, he used a phrase which will stick in everyone’s mind:
“She has been married to her first husband for over 60 years”.
That must be a compliment to Lucy as The Ladies from Last of the Summer Wine, a comedy program Lucy enjoyed, would say “After all those years he’s been properly trained.”.
In March 1959, her father sadly died of heart failure. Tragically, in April 1962, her beloved brother Jim also died, of heart failure caused, in part, by the diphtheria he contracted as a child.
Lucy was quite a stylish and adventurous dresser. When in October 1971 the family went to Blackpool for the Illuminations, Lucy purchased a bright red trouser suit, feeling that it would be more practical than a skirt and heels for the bracing Blackpool Autumn air. It caused quite sensation when the family came down to breakfast – the sight of a lady wearing trousers at breakfast! Just what is the world coming to?
After discovering the delights of comfortable feet and warm legs, the skirts and high heels never really made a comeback.
Tuesday evenings were dance evenings at St Mary’s where Lucy and Tom joined the ballroom dancing classes run by Sybil and Ken Broughton. They made many friends there over the years. During the time they went dancing Lucy still wore her three inch heel stiletto shoes.
Another of her interests was Yoga which, when she started in the early 1970s, was considered a “hippy” pastime. This was something she continued for well over 30 years until her replacement hip finally let her down.
In her later years, she enjoyed the company of her three Grandchildren Ellen, Adam and James and took great pride in their musical achievements, all of whom have inherited the Crawford musical gene.
Adam plays the piano and the trumpet in the school band.
James plays the organ, piano and the trombone in several ensembles and Foden’s Youth Band.
Ellen plays the guitar and saxophone. She has recently won the Sandbach Young Musician of the Year and gained a place at the RNCM, to study the Saxophone.
Lucy also enjoyed going the Christmas pantomime with her Grandchildren not only to laugh at the cheesy jokes but also to listen to the music arranged by John, her son.
Even when confined to a wheelchair, her strong personality provided for some extremely embarrassing moments. Her spectacular lack of tact caused many a moment when you just wished the ground would open up. “I’m only telling it as it is!” was her usual explanation. Even in hospital, she made the kind of comment about a portly nurse clearing the meal trays away that just cannot be repeated. Actually, I think it can – As the nurse carried the tray out of the room Lucy turned to John and before he could stop her said: “She must eat all the leftovers”. She was also not averse to telling friends that they’d put on a few pounds, their hair needed a good brush, you need to dye your hair your roots are showing or what they were wearing didn’t flatter them.
When she was out shopping in her wheelchair and people didn’t move out of the way quick enough, she was not averse to saying in a loud voice “Beep! Beep!”. However, her most embarrassing trait was to pinch men’s bottoms. Anne thought it was so she could see something on the shelf but judging by the glint in her eye it was probably more out of sheer devilment.
For the last sixteen years of her life, Lucy lived in something akin to a madhouse. Cries of “Grandma” as she was consulted about some matter of great importance echoed around the house. Her word was law! The sound of her electric scooter beeping as she reversed in the garden could be heard 100 yards away. The grandchildren shrieking with delight, as they raced up and down the drive in an assortment of wheelchairs, the greatest prize being the electric scooter which ensured the winning of the race. Even the dog wasn’t immune and regularly had his tail run over by the wheelchair if he didn’t shift out of the way quick enough.
Then there was the daily ritual of Countdown and her uncanny ability to solve the numbers game and the final conundrum. I think she watched it first on her own on Channel 4 and then with Anne and Tom on Channel 4+1.
University Challenge was another of her favourite quiz shows. She would often express her amazement at the general knowledge the students didn’t know.
Lucy loved wildlife programmes and regularly travelled the world in the company of David Attenborough.
Another of her favourite stations was the Al Jazeera News channel. Its news being on the Middle and Far East rather than the domestic and European news found on the normal television channels. They often joked that MI6 would come bursting in to find that the “terrorist” they had been following was actually an old lady in a wheelchair!
For almost 90 years Lucy lived an eventful life.
When she had her pacemaker fitted in May 2017, she told the consultant she wanted to live long enough to see her Grandchildren graduate and start long happy careers, maybe even become a GREAT-Grandmother. It was this attitude which convinced the consultant that she would benefit from having a pacemaker fitted.
She never gave up and right up until her death she was planning for the future, checking the seed catalogues, like a punter checks the horses betting odds, and subsequently issuing instructions to Tom and Anne for the setting of tomato seeds and jobs they had to start in the garden NOW!
I’ll finish with one final thought that we’ll never know the answer to: As time went on and Lucy could no longer do the simple day to day things we take for granted and she relied more and more on Anne, Tom and John to help her – the question is – Just how did Tom not only get the bra on inside out but manage to fasten it as well?