FERNHURST residents rallied round to remember a much-loved friend, neighbour, and member of the community.
St Margaret’s Church in Fernhurst was packed for the celebration of the life of Peggy Allen, who was born in the village during the war and lived there all her life.
Peggy, nee Edwards, was born at Courts Farm on the edge of Fernhurst where her grandfather looked after the team of horses.
She went to the village school before moving to Midhurst Secondary Modern School where she made friends she kept for the rest of her life.
Fifty years later she was helping to organise reunions for pupils and teachers which attracted former pupils from as far afield as Australia and Canada.
Peggy’s first job was as a junior secretary at Clement Brothers, but when she was 18, her mother died and she had to leave to look after her young half-brother.
Aged 21 she married John Allen and they had Mike and Jacqueline in the next five years.
John travelled a lot with his job and Peggy was a full-time mum, but that did not stop her being involved with village activities.
In 1962 she was a founder member of the Fernhurst stoolball team, playing for it for many years, as have her daughter and grand-daughters.
She also regularly supported the football and cricket teams and organised the May queen’s coronation every spring for 27 years.
Peggy was also on the village hall committee for many years and treasurer of the Nappers Wood Association.
In 2004 she and John were invited to the Queen’s garden party at Buckingham Palace and five months ago the Allens celebrated their golden wedding at the recreation ground with their children and grandchildren Stacey, Josh, Laura and Charlotte.