Tributes to Northumberland wartime WAAF volunteer who went on to help fellow ex-servicewomen

An Amble woman who was well known for her work with the Royal British Legion has passed away, aged 98.

Sunday, 8th March 2020, 4:00 pm
Edith Hunter with Group Captain Chesh Cowieson, RAF Boulmer Station Commander.
Edith Hunter with Group Captain Chesh Cowieson, RAF Boulmer Station Commander.

Edith Hunter grew up in County Durham and signed up for the Women’s Auxiliary Air Force (WAAF) during the Second World War.

She was posted initially to RAF Leuchars, then RAF Tain in 1944 ready for the D Day preparations, on to RAF Silloth and RAF Kinloss.

After war ended, Edith returned to County Durham and started a new job in the local cinema.

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She became a life-long supporter of the WAAF association. They had annual rallies across the UK where ex-servicewomen could reunite with their comrades who served their country during the war.

The WAAF re-formed into the WRAF in 1949, and fully integrated into the RAF in 1994.

RAF Boulmer station commander, Group Captain Kevin Cowieson, said: “I was very saddened to hear of the passing of Mrs Edith Hunter.

“I had the pleasure of meeting Edith through her association with the Royal British Legion, and her stories about her time serving in the WAAF were heart-warming and inspiring.

Edith Hunter in the 1940s.

“On behalf of everyone at RAF Boulmer I offer our sincere condolences to Edith’s family.”

Edith was a long-standing member of the Warkworth and Amble branch of the Royal British Legion and was always willing to represent it at community fund raising and commemorative events.

She always wore her coveted WAAF Association uniform with its distinctive blue tartan kilt, plus her medals and loved meeting people.

She had collected lots of photographic memories of her wartime service and the people she shared her life with on the camps. Many of her photographs are of those pilots who did not return.

Thankfully her life story is now available to the wider public through her recollections on YouTube link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wP8A972rT_M.

Edith’s funeral service will take place on Friday, 13 March at 1.15pm at St Cuthbert’s Parish Church, Amble. All are welcome. She had requested the Royal British Legion standard and the Union Jack to be displayed.