TRIBUTES have been paid to Pamela Smith, former secretary of Huntingdon Carnival and cleaning supervisor at St Peter s School who died last week. The union flag was flying at half-mast yesterday (Tuesday) at the BRJ Club in the town, where carnival queens
TRIBUTES have been paid to Pamela Smith, former secretary of Huntingdon Carnival and cleaning supervisor at St Peter's School who died last week. The union flag was flying at half-mast yesterday (Tuesday) at the BRJ Club in the town, where carnival queens had been chosen.
Mrs Smith, 63, who lived in Hartford, died suddenly at Hinchingbrooke Hospital on Tuesday after a throat infection had developed into pneumonia.
She was known in Huntingdon for reviving the Huntingdon Carnival in the 1980s and was secretary for 15 years. She was a governor at St John's School, having been a dinner lady there and a founder member of Huntingdon Twinning Association.
As a teenager, she worked for the London store Marshall and Snelgrove and modelled clothes for them.
Deputy head of St Peter's School, Eddie Howlett, told The Hunts Post: "Pam worked at the school for over 20 years. She was very popular with the staff and she showed a lot of kindness to colleagues and that is what they will remember her for. She was a really nice lady and we will miss her a lot."
Huntingdon town councillor, Susan Mulcahy, said: "She was very hardworking. She was carnival secretary during the 1970s and she would really go out of her way to research things and arrange things. She would go to all the local shopkeepers to get prizes and torment the hell out of them.
"In those days, the carnival lasted a whole week. There would be bingo for the pensioners, dances, discos, the drama group would put on a show, there would be a raft-race on the river, five-a-side football and the final day would be the carnival. Pamela would arrange all this and she would be working from 7am on carnival day and, if there was a dance afterwards, she would still be working at midnight. I think at one point she was also responsible for chaperoning the carnival queen, which later became a separate job."
Cllr Mulcahy added: "Pam tried to bring some life into Huntingdon and to pull the town together and that's what's missing at the moment. A lot of people knew her in the town. She will be greatly missed."
Former town clerk of Huntingdon, Ted Bocking, said: "In my many dealings with Pam, I found her steadfast, enthusiastic and loyal. She is a great loss to the town."
Mrs Smith moved to Huntingdon from Woodford Green in Essex in 1970 with her husband, David, from whom she became divorced after their two children, Ian and Rebecca, had grown up. She also leaves two grandchildren, Josh, four, and Kate, two.
Her son, Ian said: "She made Huntingdon a livelier place, even before the carnival. Everyone knew her, she was always stopping to talk to people. She was kind and she always put other people first. Nothing was just a job to her. Yet in her personal life, she was a private person. I spoke to her on the phone on the Friday before she died and it was typical of her that she did not even say she was ill. I have moved away now but, when I come back, everywhere I go someone knows her."
INFORMATION: Pamela Smith's funeral is tomorrow (Thursday) at All Saints' Church in Hartford at 9.45am, followed by cremation at Cambridge Crematorium at 10.45am. Flowers and enquiries to Anglia Co-operative Funerals, 3 St Peter's Road, Huntingdon, telephone 01480 458360.