Mavis Elizabeth White (nee Richardson)
November 1927 to 2012 (84)
Mavis was born in Finedon, the tenth child of Harry and Isabella Richardson. She grew up in that small town, which was a farming community and also a centre of the shoe manufacturing trade. Of her siblings only 3 sisters remain (October 2012). During the war she worked in the Food Office, she trained as a short hand typist at college.
After World War 2 she met up with Jeffrey White, who was a skilled plumber and had been an artificer in the Royal Navy. They married in 1948.
They went to live in Arthur Street, Wellingborough, and Jeff worked as a plumber, becoming a partner in a local firm. Mavis worked as a secretary in a local boot and shoe factory.
They had an only child, Jane. They moved to a new bungalow: in Harvey Road, Wellingborough where the family were established. Jane grew up and left school, married John, and lived locally.
Mavis and Jeff would often holiday taking their caravan around England. They had a couple of holidays at her sister Meg’s villa in Ibiza, and it was there that a love for Spain and the Mediterranean was born. Later this was to be a big factor in her life. When the grandchildren arrived, Mavis was always happy to be providing for them making clothes from scratch.
Mavis worked for a long time at Isebrook Hospital, using her secretarial skills; Jeff and her daughter Jane eventually worked there, too.
She was always happy creating things, such as curtains, pillow cases, clothes, anything which required a sewing machine, she was so adept.
In 1998 John, Jane and the three grandchildren moved to Spain, and she was very helpful in the transition.
Jeff died of an industrial disease associated with asbestos in 1999 aged 78. Around that time a house next to John and Jane in Spain was being sold and this proved the opportunity for Mavis to realise her dream of living in Spain, and next to Jane, and the grandchildren, giving her an opportunity to see them complete their school and university years. Between 1999 and 2012 Mavis lived part of each year in Spain, and part in England, which suited her as she was able to keep up with friends and relatives in both countries. She spent almost 5 years in Spain in total, and enjoyed gardening, cooking, making marmalade from fruit from her own citrus trees, picking olives for oil, and making all sorts of garments and useful items with material from a local Spanish market using her sewing machine. She also enjoyed eating out with friends. She owned and drove her car regularly, she was last in Spain towards the end of June 2012.
Mavis was an independent person who needed to be challenged, so never stood still after she lost Jeff. Only two days before she died she was making marmalade with her sister in law.
She was always generous with her grandchildren, helping them to realise their dreams. The wedding of her grandson to a Spanish girl in Almería, Spain was one of her special memories, she would have loved to have “lived it all over again”.
She also wrote fondly of speaking to her other grandson on the telephone and hearing her only great grandchild chatting in the background.
She was very proud of her grandchildren and of their achievements.