Devoted nurse and teacher Jean Hiscocks remembered

Jean Hiscocks on her 60th wedding anniversary
Jean Hiscocks on her 60th wedding anniversary

A former Chichester teacher and children’s nurse has died after a lengthy degenerative illness.

Mrs Jean Hiscocks, née Musson, was known by many now grown-up patients and pupils living in the area.

Jean Hiscocks, who was a dedicated nurse and teacher

Jean Hiscocks, who was a dedicated nurse and teacher

She has been described as a devoted wife, loving mother, caring grandmother, dedicated nurse, thoughtful teacher, natural giver and true friend who will be sorely missed.

Jean met her husband, Tony, at a Police Ball at Elephant and Castle in London. Tony had just joined the West Sussex Constabulary and was invited to the Metropolitan Police ball by a school friend in the service.

He said: “The nurses were given free tickets. She was on night duty so couldn’t go but she was suddenly given the night off.

“There were five nurses in a row. I met each one in turn and as I often joke, I was left with the runt at the end.”

Jean trained at Guy’s Hospital, starting in 1948 and qualifying three years later as an RSCN at the Evelina Hospital for Sick Children in London.

She and Tony were married at St Nicolas Church in Shoreham on July 1951 and they soon moved to Chichester.

Jean became a staff nurse on the children’s ward at the Royal West Sussex Hospital in Chichester in 1952 and worked there for many years.

Tony was transferred to Lewes when Sussex Police was formed in 1968 and Jean left nursing as there was not a children’s ward nearby.

When Tony mooted the idea of leaving the police force to train as a teacher, Jean said she would go into teaching first, then she could work while he trained.

“She always had an interest in young children,” Tony explained.

“As long as there were children involved, she didn’t really mind what she did.”

So, in 1972, Jean went to at Sussex University in Brighton to qualify. Her first job was at Arundel Primary School in 1973 and she spent two years teaching there.

The family moved back to Chichester in 1975, so Jean got a job at Lavant Primary School as a reception class teacher. She remained in the role until she retired in 1987.

Over the years, Jean also assisted Tony when he ran residential courses at Cobnor Activity Centre.

“As a family, we had always sailed,” explained Tony.

“I used to take pupils from Midhurst Intermediate, Midhurst Grammar and Bosham Primary schools away for a weekend of sailing and Jean would always do the cooking for them.”

The couple had two sons, Nicholas and Richard, but Richard died at the age of 57.

Tony said it ‘really knocked her out’ and Jean suffered a whole range of illnesses afterwards, including a heart attack, cancer, a stroke and dementia.

“Jean remained tranquil as she had been throughout our married life, right up to the end,” he added.

Jean died peacefully at home, aged 87, on September 20 after a lengthy degenerative illness.

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