Joan Medlock
Joan Medlock

Laurie Bowman, Magpies, Oast House Field

The Memorial Service for Mrs Jan Medlock took place in the Parish Church of St. Mary and St. Peter ,Pett, on Monday 21 January. Her family described her full and rewarding life. Joan was born at home in Richmond on 30 August 1912 with the newspapers still dominated by the ‘’Titanic’’ She was the fourth of 5 daughters born to Percy and Lallie Heitland. Her primary school was a mile away so she walked there and twice a day (no school meals) at the age of 5. The dancing classes she attended meant many performances including some in the West End. The whole family always had summer holidays together. Joan loved Lulworth Cove and the Wye Valley. At 15 they holidayed in Felixstowe where sadly 85 years later she would draw her last breath.

She went to the North London Collegiate School where she played for her school at hockey and tennis and continued to play tennis for much of her life. She matriculated and would train as a nurse at St. Bartholomew’s Hospital. Before going to Bart’s Joan had a year in Chateau d’Oeux, Switzerland in a children’s home enjoying the children, the Alps and the French language. After her training her Father arranged for her to travel to the Canary Islands on a tramp ship. Returning on the Motor Vessel Highland Chieftain she met an engineer on the crew and this would be her husband Teddy Medlock.In 1937 they married and having left the sea Teddy retrained in the very new field of refrigeration. They travelled the country and this continued during the war when cold storage was vital. Joan became a school visitor mostly working as a nit nurse.

After the war Teddy had TB and had to give up work so they decided to buy a small business which Joan would run . This was the Post Office stores in Warehorne just above Romney Marsh. When Teddy recovered Joan could spend time as a botanist recording the flora of both Kent and Sussex and enjoying being a member of the Tenterden Choral Society.

Eventually they retired and moved to a new house in Pett. They got fully involved in Pett life with Joan becoming the organist and choirmaster as well as joining the Rye Singers. Sadly Teddy died in 1976. Joan travelled widely and especially enjoying wildlife. So Germany, Norway ,Sicily and two Kenyan safaris were tackled with characteristic vigour. In the village she won classes in the Pett Flower and Produce shows and when a Greek class started she not only was the first name on the list she painstakingly translated the New Testament into English. At 95 she felt looking after a house and garden was too much and she moved to the Five Villages House, Icklesham. Of course she was fully involved and took up the challenge of technology. She e-mailed, texted and took part in the computer course.

Joan was admired and loved. She loved in return especially all her family.

It is a cold sunny afternoon(27 January). Joan would have smiled with pleasure to see a Red Admiral sunning itself having emerged from temporary hibernation in the ivy. At one time this butterfly only came to Britain in the summer. Now it is adapting to even hard British winters.

Sunday 3 February 10.30 Parish Eucharist in All Saints

4-6 Queen’s Head Live Music Local Heroes Rhythm ‘n Grooves

Saturday 16 February 10am -3pm Icklesham Memorial Hall Table Sale. Tables £5 phone Sandra to book 01424 814408. Good late news – now all tables booked. There is a table booked just for the New Pavilion Fund. This will provide refreshments on the day of the sale. You do not have to be there all day but help for an hour or two would be a help. Any donations of cakes to sell would also be appreciated. So people who will really benefit from the New Pavilion might be able to give a their support. Contact Stuart Baker if you’d like to get involved.