Four Shires Guild of Bell Ringers

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Ivy Ellen Riseborough - a Memorial

George and Ivy Riseborough regularly joined in with FSG Guild practices and events when they were in this area from their home in North Walsham, Norfolk, and became well-known among members. Ivy sadly died last year and George wondered whether his obituary of Ivy in their local Association's publication could be reprinted in this Newsletter, so that all who remember Ivy might see it. He therefore wrote to Peter Kenealy, with the object of it being passed to me for inclusion in these pages. I reproduce George's letter to Peter and Ivy's obituary. Ed

North Walsham, Norfolk

Dear Peter,
Please receive enclosed cheque to cover my subscription for 2011, plus a donation to the FSG Bell Fund.

I was asked to write a brief story on the life of my Dear Ivy for the Striking Example (a circular for the Eastern Branch of the Norwich Diocesan Guild) and I thought I'd send you a copy of this to pass to your Editor, Chris Povey. We have been coming to Moreton since 1994 and have rung in many FSG parishes and many people had got to know her. I must say with all her disabilities I still miss her. If all goes well, I hope to be back with you all in July (God willing).

I have received your Newsletter No 127 and always find it makes good reading; just makes me feel much closer to you all. I'm also missing out on those Cotswold ales and bitters. If it's not too late, I'd like to wish you all a very happy New Year. Let's hope it will be a much warmer one, so I can get my shorts on again. My very Kind Regards to you and all who know me.
George Riseborough.

6th August 1922 - 20th May 2010

Ivy was born in Wolverhampton and brought up in Walsall, where she grew up and lived as a young girl, later working for Crabtrees, a local electrical firm.

At 'Bluecoats' School, at the age of 13, in the playground, Ivy suffered an accident in which she hurt her ankle, after which she was diagnosed with tubercular osteomyelitis. She spent the rest of her school years in hospital fighting the disease.

Ivy's first husband unfortunately died young, and Ivy was left to bring up and provide for her three children alone.

Years later, George and Ivy met and fell in love with one another at Costessey, and made their life together at Longmoor Farm, Catfield. They were married for 37 years.

George worshipped at All Saints Catfield. Jocelyn Gardiner encouraged George to learn to ring with an invitation to 'come and see', which is where he first met Gilbert, who was teaching learners there. Later on, at an NDA quarterly meeting, Rosemary Charles apparently enquired of Ivy if she was a ringer, and upon Ivy's 'no', Rosemary said it was about time that she was! So Ivy at the age of 60 took up the challenge. Gilbert taught her to ring at St Mary's Happisburgh, where she remained a member of the band for practice nights and Sunday service ringing (as well as a choir-member) until she broke her wrist badly. She never regained enough strength in her hand to return to ringing.

She became a member of the Norwich Diocesan Association at Kessingland on 4th September 1982, and her framed certificate, signed by Jocelyn as President and Jim Morley as Secretary & Treasurer, proudly hangs on the wall of George and Ivy's sitting room to this day.

In 1984 Ivy rang her first quarter peal at St Michael's, Shap, in Cumberland, with George, and Gilbert and Joan and their sons Duncan and Philip. It was a surprise to Ivy, as no-one had said they were going for a quarter. George and Gilbert hatched that one up between them! There were more quarters, but none as memorable as the first.

Sadly Ivy's heath began to fail, and over the years she became to rely completely on George for her everyday needs. Finally Ivy became more unwell and collapsed, and after nearly a week in hospital, passed away on 20th May.

Ivy was cremated at St Faith's on 1st June. This was followed by a well-attended memorial service, with some lovely hymns, at St Mary's Happisburgh, with contributions in her memory to St Mary's church fabric fund, for which the church was very thankful.

On 21st August, George, with Ivy's family, held a private prayer service at Longmoor Farm, Catfield, their old home, and then Ivy's ashes were offered up to the wind that blew over the surrounding Neolithic area and places that Ivy had loved.