WE have lost a national treasure" was just one of the 200 tributes paid to Lynne Downing, the life-long Newent resident who was the heart and soul of the town.
'WE have lost a national treasure" was just one of the 200 tributes paid to Lynne Downing, the life-long Newent resident who was the heart and soul of the town.
Lynne, who was 55, lost her battle with ovarian cancer on November 7.
A warm and caring woman, she lived with her husband Trevor in Newent's Watery Lane, in the same house she was born in, and where she also give birth to her daughters, Rachael Hutchins, now 30, and Marie Downing, 36.
Lynne and Trevor, 55, were married for 37 years. "They were best friends, soul mates," Rachael said.
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The couple met at a carnival in Ross-on-Wye in 1975, and from that moment on were never apart.
"They were like two bookends, they just fit. They both wore their heart on their sleeves," she said.
Lynne also had a younger sister Susie, who sadly died 18 months ago.
Hundreds of cards of condolence have been sent to her loved ones, and all with the same message – Newent is truly missing the woman who was so well-loved.
"The standard joke in our house is that if she went out for a loaf of bread, it'd be stale by the time it got back," said Rachael.
While she had many strings to her bow, Lynne was devoted to her work for the British Legion, for whom she sold poppies for 25 years. She was also an avid knitter and singer who loved rock n' roll.
"She won't be forgotten, she will live on," Rachael said.
Lynne also leaves behind a son-in-law Mike, granddaughter Summer, 10, nieces, Grace, Amy and Beffie and four "very special friends", Hazel, Gail, Daphne and Lizzie. The funeral will be held tomorrow at 12.30pm in St Mary's Church, in Newent. All are welcome, wearing red.