Hayling Islander delivery woman Pat dies age 78

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IT WAS her humour, happy-go-lucky attitude and sunny disposition that meant she was loved by all of those she shared her life with.

After spending 35 years on Hayling Island, Patricia Ann Warren, known as Pat, was 78-years-old when she died in July – having been born two weeks after the start of the Second World War, in 1939.

Pat grew up in the East End of London, with six brothers and five sisters, and moved to Hayling in 1983.

She delivered the Hayling Islander with her partner, Sandy Pendergast, around their home area of St Hermans Estate, a residential and holiday caravan park, up until she went into hospital in June.

Pat’s brother Michael White, 71, said his sister was proud of her army career.

He said: ‘In 1954 Pat started working as a specialist machinist producing army uniforms. 

‘In 1957 she joined the Women’s Royal Army Core, and spent nine years driving vehicles up to 30 tonnes. In 1966 she left the army and joined the Ministry of Public Buildings and Works – this was coach driving, taking visiting diplomats to places of interest in the country. 

‘Her last working role was at Mill Rythe Holiday Village as head housekeeper.

‘Her time on Hayling was precious, travelling in a magic van called Betsy, accompanied by Cindy the super dog.

‘We will love and miss Pat very much, for her humour, her gift of arguing and her generous, giving personality.’

Pat played for the Hayling Island Bowls Club and was standard-bearer and entertainment secretary for the island’s Royal British Legion branch.

She was diagnosed with dementia 10 years ago, which was her cause of death on July 15. Her funeral was held at The Oaks Crematorium, Havant, on August 3. It was well-attended by 140 people.

Pat’s partner Sandy Pendergast, 71, said the pair met on a train in 1970 – both on their way to work at Camden Ambulance Station.

She said: ‘Our eyes didn’t meet across a carriage – she trod on my foot!

‘That was the start of 48 years together. We were very similar but in different ways.

’Pat was always happy-go-lucky and prepared to help anyone out. We will all miss her sunny disposition, but no-one more than me.

‘There was a standard-bearer at her funeral and a Union Jack over her coffin for her time in the forces. She would have loved it.​​​​​​’​