Obituary: Agnes Elizabeth Sylvester (Bett)

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The funeral service of 90-year-old Agnes Elizabeth Sylvester – know to all as Bett – took place at Lincoln Crematorium, the Rev Mark Holden officiating.

She passed away at her home in Wragby on January 16.

Daughter of the late Albert and Agnes Green, Bett was born at Hainton and at the age of seven at Hainton School first met Jack Sylvester, who was to become her husband.

When she was 14 she went to work for Dr Dean at Dunholme for a year before moving to new employment with Canon and Mrs Moore at Wragby Vicarage.

It was while there that she became ill with pleurisy and had to give up, as the doctor thought there was a danger of her illness developing into TB.

She returned to Hainton, where her late father worked on the Heneage Estates, and met up again with Jack Sylvester, who also worked there.

As 15 years old they began courting; the only free time she had from work was Sundays and Wednesday evenings.

Jack then worked for the late Eddie Baker of Roobery Farm, who had an empty cottage on the farm which was to be taken over by soldiers if it wasn’t occupied, so he persuaded the couple to marry and move into the cottage with the added incentive of a ton of coal in the coal house and a pig in the sty.

So, at the age of 20, Jack and Bett married at Hainton Church, and a year later had their daughter Ann.

Bett was always happy and contented; wages were only £1 per week but she felt she had everything she wanted, with lovely neighbours, friends and family.

Seven years later their son Roy was born, and after a few home moves in the area, they finally were able to buy a cottage.

The devoted couple shared their lives full of humour and a happy outlook on life, despite their ups and downs.

They enjoyed the countryside and gardening, but sadly Jack’s health, due to arthritis, made it difficult for them to manage their large garden and the stairs, so they moved from their cottage and the village they loved so much and went into a retirement bungalow in Wragby.

Family always remained important to them and Bett never really felt the need to join other groups and organisations as she was happy to be with Jack.

Sadly, he died, but Bett was surrounded by her very close family, loving seeing and being with her grandchildren and great-grandchildren and friends living close by.

Bett is now survived by daughter Ann Lingard, son Roy Sylvester, three grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.

Family mourners included: Ann and Brian Lingard (daughter and son-in-law); Roy and Alison Sylvester (son and daughter-in-law); Steven and Carole Lingard, Carol and Andy Wilkins, Polly Gough (grandchildren); James Lingard, Thomas Lingard, Jack Lingard, Ryan and Laura Gryniewcz (great-grandchildren).

Friends at the service were: Margaret Gough; Sharon and Charles Spowage; Mr and Mrs Peter Maddison; Mr and Mrs Alan Tomlinson; Jean Smith; Linda Bell (also representing John Bell); Susan Wynter; Caroline and Tony Trevor; Alan Atkin; Betty Coulson; Tony Lee; Yvonne and Gordon Blackburn.

Funeral arrangements were made by J Marshall Funeral Directors of Market Rasen.