Betty Palfrey (1928-2018)

Betty with her father, Leonard, brother Len junior and sister Doreen at Isebrook Cottage

Betty Palfrey (Born November 1928 – Died November 2018)

Mum was born to Leonard and Dorothy Chappell between the two world wars. Her father worked in the shoe factories. Betty was the eldest of 5 children spanning two decades and had a maternal role herself within the family. She worked at the Weetabix factory in Burton Latimer and as a machinist in the “Ideal” clothes factory.

During the war, her Uncle Alf was serving with a young man, Fred Palfrey, who asked if he might write to Betty. Through letters and meeting, a romance developed and after the war, in 1948, Betty and Fred were married in Finedon.


I (John) was the youngest of three sons, by the time I was born, the family had moved to a new council house in Wellingborough where I lived with Mum, Dad, Ron and Robert.
Money was tight in post-war Britain and Mum brought up us three boys, while Dad was at work.
She was a loving caring mother who knitted, cooked and kept the home for her family.
My memories of her was that she was a hardworking housewife who had many friends in the local area. They would often confide in her and ask for advice about anything at all that was bothering them.

Mum joined Mill Road Baptist Church in Wellingborough which became a significant part of family life. She was a deacon, Sunday school teacher, youth club leader, occasional lay preacher and president of a Women’s Christian Meeting Association. She used to speak all over the county. Her faith affected all parts of her life, every day of the week.

Betty worked at newsagents and hardware shops in Berrymoor Road.

When the boys left home this freed up some time, so Betty was able to further serve the community as a nursing auxiliary at Isebrook Hospital mostly working on Croyland Ward.
She looked after her sister in law Babs, who was disabled in their home at The Pyghtle. Also her Father, Leonard, as he was in poor health.
Afterwards she worked at “Rowlatts” hardware shop in Wellingborough.

In retirement, Betty and Fred kept busy with the large garden, which she loved, including the birds, butterflies and flowers.

Mum’s 88th birthday

In 2010, Fred, the love of her life sadly died, and life was not the same again. Her mobility began to deteriorate but she managed with the help of Robert. She found it increasingly difficult to live at home even with the help of carers. It was only in May this year when she had to move to Tasker House for full time care.

Mum was just 10 days short of being 90 when she passed away.
Mum leaves 3 sons, 9 grandchildren and 11 great grandchildren – with another on the way.

During her life Betty made many friends and remained close to them, and her family throughout. This was reflected in the numbers attending her funeral.

Butterfly floral tribute

We believe that Betty’s faith will sustain her in the arms of her Lord and Saviour, along with Fred who also had faith in Jesus Christ.

7th December 2018

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *