WINNIFRED 1909-2001

Winnie was born in 1909 in West Cottages, Northwold to parents George and Blanche Shipp, who had three children. The first was a son Billy who later became the village baker in premises that are now known as Bakery Cottages. Winnie came next and the third child was a younger sister, Vera who became a Schoolteacher both in Northwold and West Winch where she still resides.
Winnie started school at Northwold when she was five years old, and left when she was fourteen.   She remembered as a child that the only transport in the Village, and between villages was a 'Carriers' pony and cart, which her parents used to hire once a year for an outing to Kings Lynn. School Summer Holidays she recalled were spent in the Harvest fields chasing rabbits, skipping or playing marbles. Winter evenings were spent playing table games or singing songs round the harmonium by the light of the lamp.
She recalled that during World War 1 there were some frightening moments when Zeppelins flew over the village.
On leaving School she took a job as a domestic help at Northwold Rectory, where the work was hard, and she didn't enjoy it at all.   She subsequently left Northwold Rectory for the position of

Cook at Bodney Hall and there she recalled that she was very happy.
It was while she was at Bodney Hall that he brother Billy started his bakery business in the village of Hilborough, and so she left Bodney Hall to be housekeeper for Billy. She stayed with her brother as housekeeper until he married at which point she returned home to Northwold where she worked in the village stores of Harrison and Christmas which is where the Pine Shop now is.

Whilst working for Harrison and Christmas she married Ernest Bloomfield, in 1936. Ernest was employed by the local butcher, Mr L. Catlin, and they lived in the adjoining house. Shortly after this came the outbreak of the Second World War, and 'Ernie' as he was called, was called up. So Winnie took over Ernie's work in the butcher's shop. Sadly Ernie lost his life serving his country and so Winnie stayed on at the butcher's shop until the end of the war when Mr Catlin's son returned from Army duties to run the shop.

During this time Winnie had given birth to her son, David, and she was obliged to bring him up single handed after the death of Ernie.
She subsequently became part time School Secretary, and in later life was a part time assistant in the general stores run by Tom and Queenie Bowers until she

reached retirement age.
Winnie was an extremely active in village life involving herself in the running of several organisations as either Secretary or Treasurer. She was a founder member of the local W.I., a staunch member of the British Legion (later to become the Royal British Legion) - she was at one time Standard Bearer, Brown Owl with the Brownies, a member of the Mother's Union, Over 60's Club and Meals on Wheels, and also the local correspondent for the Thetford and Watton Times and Lynn News and Advertiser for many years.
But, her main love was for the Church, where she served as Peoples Warden.
She had many hobbies, her favourites being knitting and tapestry.
Her son David now lives in Oxfordshire where she spent many holidays at his home, and travelled with him and his family to various places both in the U.K. and abroad.
She was blessed with two grandchildren and seven great grandchildren.
When the new doctors surgery was built on the end of the Village Hall, at a time when she was well advanced in years, she was invited to perform the official opening ceremony - a fitting tribute to a lovely person.

David Bloomfield

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