Tributes paid to Chrishall legend Irene Cranwell

PUBLISHED: 11:24 14 January 2010 | UPDATED: 16:14 11 May 2010

TRIBUTES have been paid to legendary Chrishall resident Irene Cranwell who has died. Mrs Cranwell passed away peacefully at her home in the village last Thursday, just weeks before her 100th birthday. A former school mistress and village correspondent for

TRIBUTES have been paid to legendary Chrishall resident Irene Cranwell who has died.

Mrs Cranwell passed away peacefully at her home in the village last Thursday, just weeks before her 100th birthday.

A former school mistress and village correspondent for The Crow, she had lived in Chrishall since 1935 when she came to work at the village school.

Her voice became familiar to many as a contributor to the Christopher South show on BBC Radio Cambridgeshire.

Writing on the village website, Mr South said: "Irene was one of my best friends. I had known her 50 years - she was an absolutely extraordinary person. She was not a cuddly old lady but a real toughie."

Married to the late Bernard Cranwell, she leaves a daughter, Sue, and a son, John. Her son-in-law, Fred, now curates the Chrishall museum, which was founded by Mrs Cranwell based on her personal collection of memorabilia.

The Chrishall marketeers group recognised her contribution to village life - and her status as the country's oldest regular broadcaster - by presenting Mrs Cranwell with a garden bench at its Christmas market in December.

In her letter of thanks to the group, Mrs Cranwell said: "On behalf of dear old Chrishall - thank you for the really lovely bench, combining beauty and practicality. To paraphrase a well known benediction: God bless her and all who sit on her.

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