In loving memory of


Born in Bishop Stortford, Passed Away in Cherry Hinton
‘Special’ is a word that is used to describe a person who spreads joy with a beautiful smile, laughter or kind gesture. ‘Special’ describes people who act from the heart and keep in mind the hearts of others. ‘Special’ applies to something that is admired and precious and which can never be replaced. ‘Special’ is the word that best describes Doreen, a very special mum, nan, great granny, sister, auntie and friend.
Great Chesterford

Resting Place

Bishop Stortford Cemetery
Her distinctive laugh
I would like to share some memories from Doreen’s grandsons, Mathew, Sean and Aaron, whom she loved so dearly. She also loved their children, Marnie, Cameron and Charlie, her great-grandchildren. Doreen was so sad that she would miss out on seeing them grow up. Our nan was one of the greatest and strongest women we know. She taught us three boys many life lessons, how to be brave and how to be strong, and now that’s what we are, just like her we can face anything. We also have many fond memories of our nan. We will remember her Stansted home. We loved playing in that house, we were free. We could play football by the apple tree in the back and we remember the climbing frame. When we were finished, we would have one of her finest crumbles, which eventually got boxed and had Tesco on the side. We loved that place and it will always be a top memory. Our mum and dad split up, and if it wasn’t for this woman being there every minute for our mum, I don’t know, she kept the cogs going. She would come every Monday for lasagne and crumble, this became a thing for a long time. Every holiday she went on, she brought us home a T-shirt from wherever it was or a footy shirt of a team we’d never heard of. But for all that, this woman was everything, just like our mother. She is the grandmother, father and mother to Debra, Mathew, Sean and Aaron. She was a living legend and will always be a legend forever. We will miss her so much, the house is different now and that says a lot about the presence she had. We love you, nan, love from Mathew, Sean and Aaron.
Doreen Haggerwood was born on the 29th September 1937 in the Hertfordshire town of Bishop’s Stortford. She was the middle daughter of three born to Eleanor and Cecil (surname). Sadly, her older sister Shirley died in 1980 but her younger and much loved sister, Sue, is here today. Cecil worked as a Railway Lorry Driver and Eleanor was a housewife who raised their family. Their family life was a happy one. The sisters were extremely close and remained so throughout their lives. Due to the age gap between Doreen and Sue, Doreen was not only a sister but also like a second mum to Sue. When Shirley emigrated to the USA, Doreen missed her and would go to visit her there. As a child she attended St Michael’s Primary and Junior school and aged 11 she moved up to Bishop’s Stortford Secondary Modern. Little is known about her school life but one memory that Doreen would often recall was about a boy in her class who would dip her plaits in the inkwell. Perhaps one of the most important parts of her school life is that she met her longest standing friend Jean. To this day they are still very good friends, a friendship that spans approximately 80 years. There can’t be much that the friends didn’t know about each other and there must be so many fond memories of times spent together. World War II broke out when Doreen was just two and although Bishop’s Stortford was a relatively safe place to live, she did share some of the memories that made an impact on her. She remembered a visit to London and seeing the extent of the bombing there. As a young girl she remembered the effects of rationing and blackouts and she also remembered that there was a teacher training college near to where they lived on which a bomb fell, killing a teacher.’
On a Snowy day, in January 1960, they were married at Holy Trinity Church in Bishop’s Stortford. Married life began in a brand new bungalow in the village of Manuden in Essex, which Jack, who was a builder, designed and had specially built. It was their first home together and Doreen and Jack loved living there. Later that year their first child Debbie was born followed by David in 1963, completing their family. Debbie remembers a lovely childhood in a happy family home. There were caravanning holidays to Norfolk, The West Country and Scotland, amongst other places, usually with a specific group of friends. Typical British seaside holidays with friends having fun. When Debbie was 9 they moved to Stansted in Essex, as Manuden was far too quiet for Doreen. When Debbie was a teenager Doreen decided to go back to work at a handbag factory and then later at Forbuoys Newsagents. She worked there until well into her 70’s. In 1989, Jack, who was 9 years older than Doreen, sadly passed away after 29 years of happy marriage. Doreen missed her husband terribly and was rather lost without him. A little while later Doreen’s friend Pearl also passed away. Pearl and her husband Derek were part of the caravanning group and good friends. Having both lost their partners Doreen and Derek grew closer and eventually lived together in Ware in Hertfordshire. Derek became one of the family and he and Doreen had 27 years together. They had lovely and exotic holidays together to places far and wide, including Thailand, Italy, Spain, America, the Canaries and Egypt. How lovely too have had all those wonderful experiences. When Derek passed away four years ago Doreen moved in with Debbie which meant Doreen got to see more of her three grandsons and their families. How else will Doreen be remembered? She had a love for all of her family – children, grandchildren, great grandchildren, sister and nephew and nieces.
Doreen left school when she was 15 and her first full time job was as a milk lady on a milk float. It was a job that she very much enjoyed, as she always loved to talk to people, and also where she learned to drive. However, the milk float had no gears and this reflected in her driving for years to come. Being driven by Doreen was not always a good experience and in later life she made an even worse passenger! She worked as a milk lady for a couple of years before becoming a telephonist at Stansted Airport and around this time she met Jack.
Travelling was her favourite thing to do… They had lovely and exotic holidays together to places far and wide, including Thailand, Italy, Spain, America, the Canaries and Egypt. How lovely too have had all those wonderful experiences. She also enjoyed knitting and socialising.

Memorable Videos


The day Doreen’s sister surprised her with a visit
Typical doreen applying her lipstick
Doreen’s energy made everyone laugh
  • Bill Withers - Ain't No Sunshine 00:00
  • Donna Taggart - Jelous Of The Angels 00:00
  • Freya Ridings - Lost Without You 00:00


    Portia Brady
    4 Jul 2024 12:28pm

    Your memory will live forever… always missed but always loved

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