The RNLI saves lives at sea.

Sarah Irene Cowley

Also known as: Sally.


Picture of Sally Cowley.

This piece of writing is a dedication from me to my very dear Auntie, Sally Cowley who was also my Godmother. I loved and treasured her all my life until her death at Corbridge, Northumberland on 3 May 2006.

Sally was born on 14 June 1915 to Joseph and Mary Ellen Smith in a small rural village, Smithy Bridge, near to Rochdale in Lancashire. She was very proud of her roots and was a Lancashire girl through and through. Sally’s sister Grace was my Mother, who died in 1990. They were great friends and soul mates and my Mother christened me Jacqueline ‘Sally’, in her honour.

Sally was a social person: she had lots of friends, many of whom originated from her childhood and she made equally as precious ones throughout her life. She had no children of her own and so her nephew, Ken and his family and the children of dear friends, particularly Angela and Steven meant so much to her.

Sally was an extremely capable and practical woman. Being brought up in the country, Sally was a country woman at heart and enjoyed walking and liked animals. She was a great cook and specialised as a hat and dress maker. She had her own shop in Rochdale, called ‘Irene’ which was a nice place to shop and she gave a very personal attention to her customers. She always loved clothes and fashion and wore the very best she could.

She married her late husband, Alan Cowley around 1975 and were very happy together until Alan died in 1995. They travelled extensively and often went away to North Wales or the Fylde Coast. They travelled on Concorde twice and cruised on the Oriana and Canberra. She loved the sea and had great admiration for the work and the crews of the RNLI. I recall that she organised some local fundraising events from time to time.

In many respects, she was a humble woman, but who showed strength and courage in the tough times in her life. She would not suffer fools at any level and was a kind woman, with lovely manners, who never forgot to say thank you. She was a plain speaker, and displayed a quiet dignity in her dealings with people. She was a lovely person and I miss her as she always made me smile, (sometimes when she did not mean to.) I firmly believe that my own life has been enrichened, by her being such a large part of it.

Added by: Jackie Stevenson on 8 October 2007.



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