A FORMER advertisement director with the Grantham Journal has died.
Maureen Lewis died in Peterborough City Hospital after a short illness. She was 71.
Maureen, known as ‘Mo’ by many of her newspaper colleagues, became advertisement director for the paper and other titles in the Welland Valley Newspapers group in the late 1990s, before retiring in 2002.
Maureen started her newspaper career in the telephone sales department at the Peterborough Evening Telepgraph in 1968 and worked her way up to the position of advertisement director on the evening paper in the mid-1980s.
Her time in charge of the advertising side of the business coincided with a period of great success for the ET and associated newspapers, then owned by the city-based national publishing business EMAP.
Colleagues remember Maureen as a manager determined to have success for herself and her team, who showed great loyalty to her colleagues, many of whom became lifelong friends. She adopted a ‘no-nonsense’ style, but was encouraging, supportive and kind to her staff.
She loved her work, and in many ways it was her life, but she also loved the way her success enabled her to enjoy other activities, especially travel. She enjoyed the glamour of cruising, was thrilled by Australia, and loved the United States, visiting nearly every part of that country.
Maureen, who lived in Market Deeping, was born in Tallington, near Stamford, the daughter of Bert and Dot Carter.
Her mother died when she was six and Maureen stayed with an aunt before going to live with her father and grandfather at the age of 15. She attended schools in Tallington and Stamford.
After leaving school at the age of 15, her first job was as a shorthand typist at Blackstone engineering in Stamford, where her father worked as a paint sprayer.
Her love of life and determination to enjoy it to the full was clear to all who knew her during this period, when apart from having a wonderful social life, her good looks and outgoing personality brought her accolades in several beauty pageants, most notably a national ‘Queen Boudica’ competition, which resulted in her being hauled through London streets in a chariot as her reward for gaining first place.
She married RAF engineer Dave Lewis, based at RAF Wittering, and the couple spent three years in Libya when her husband was posted there. On their return, Maureen embarked on her career at the Evening Telegraph, although the marriage ended.
After retiring, she developed a keen interest in antiques and enjoyed scouring boot fairs for bargains, which she sold at an antiques and crafts market in Market Deeping.
Maureen’s keen eye for style, her ability to quickly assess a subject and her love of beating the odds, meant she invariably turned a profit.
In later years she shared her life and home with friend and companion Eddie Arch, a former transport manager for EMAP. He died in March 2011.
Maureen will be greatly missed by all who knew her.
Maureen’s funeral service will be at Peterborough Crematorium on Wednesday, June 20, at 2.30 pm. Family flowers only.