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Lilian Fanny (Tanny) Butler 1908 - 1995

Browsing the village site for
The photos that were knew
And a well known face
Suddenly sprang into view
I didn't know her village history,
Just she was my mother's friend
A woman of distinctive character
Strong until her very end.

She was an Army widow
A senior NCO's wife,
Lived in quarters in India
Talked sometimes of Mess life.
Now back in her home village
Seemed neither sorry or glad
She'd seen more of the world
Than your average villager had.

She lived very simply
For the then current day
Spurned electricity
Did things in her own way.
A Yorkist Range for cooking,
Paraffin oil lamps for light,
Her house a gentle beacon
Shining out into the night.

No modern plumbed water,
Every drop used she had to bring,
Hand pumped ,from the outside
From her well, fed by a spring.
A house of pleasant silence
No noise in the background
No radio or TV with their
Conversation killing sound.

I loved every single visit
Drowsily listened to their talk
Until out into the night for
A pre bedtime home walk.
It wasn't at all one sided
She'd visit us too
Watch Tv and chatter
The way good friends do

A very unlikely friendship though.
I don't know how it had started.
I think it ended amicably when,
For some reason, the pair parted.
Mill Row is still standing
Unchanged from the outside
All owner occupied now and
Maintained with obvious pride.

I'm so very pleased and grateful
I'd had the chance to know her.
In this modern complying world
Such individuals are so very rare.
It was nice to think of Tanny Butler
And the individualistic way,
For so many happy years, she
Kept so called progress at bay.

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