Fruit pavlova even better than bread pudding: Bognor say thanks for the memories, Maggie

Maggie Windsor's fruit pavlova versus bread pudding. Not a culinary contest you see debated much in fairness but, as a matter of record, for Bognor manager Jack Pearce it is one that the latter wins hands down.

Monday, 1st November 2021, 4:15 pm
Updated Monday, 1st November 2021, 4:16 pm
Maggie Windsor

Reflecting on the sad passing of beloved Rocks stalwart Maggie, who recently died aged 83, Jack says he has nothing but fond memories of her and her devotion to the club. Yet he begs to disagree with the many who claim her delicious bread pudding was her finest offering when it came to her incredible edibles.

Maggie was the club's de facto matriarch for many years, at first heading up the canteen -- where her famed bread pudding earned rave reviews throughout the land -- before graduating to running the club's social club. And Jack recalled: "Maggie was very well known for her fabulous bread pudding and it was very, very good but, I have to say, the texture of her fruit pavlova made it my absolute favourite. No comparison."

But, says the Nye Camp boss, Maggie brought far more to the table than her wonderful food. "I can't speak highly enough of Maggie's incredible contribution to this club and our community," he said after the Rocks had honoured her passing with a minute's silence before the 5-0 FA Trophy win over Waltham Abbey at Nyewood Lane on Saturday.

"She was a very special person, the bedrock of the club in many ways in a period that saw us go though some dark days. Maggie really cared for the club and could always be counted on to help pull us through. When we were struggling she put together a fantastic team that contributed hugely to the club's tremendous benefit financially.

"Back then the social club was open seven nights a week and a Sunday afternoon and it was a major source of income to the club as we struggled to pay off debts and move forwards.

"I will never forget her humour which was incredible and she had an incredible English language phraseology which could help diffuse any heated situation." Any suggestion that Maggie’s language could be, er, colourful is purely speculation!

Maggie was instrumental in helping the club become one of the first in the country to run a Youth Training Scheme (YTS) which saw young players join the Rocks in a programme akin to a football apprenticeship. Indeed, it can be considered a success given that a certain Simon Rodger went on to play not only for the mighty Bognor but in the top flight for Crystal Palace as well as stints at Manchester City, Stoke City and Brighton.

"Maggie put some of the players up at her house and looked after them with all their meals and needs," remembered Jack. "She was a very important figure making all of that happen back in the late 1980s.

"We've lost a wonderful woman and I would personally like to thank her for all she did for the club and say that my heart goes out to her and her family -- thanks for the memories, Maggie."

*Maggie's funeral takes place at Chichester Crematorium at 10.15 on November 11.