She was Aunt Daisy to generations of Sunday School children in Chrishall. But to give her her full title she was Miss Daisy Maud Revell.
Aunty Daisy was one of her the most placid persons I have ever known. Nothing ruffled her and she was completely devoid of physical fear. Her whole life revolved around the church and she ‘served’ under seven vicars: the Reverends Beley, Hard, May, Hort, Morris, Bagley and Taylor.
From delivering parish magazines to helping spring-clean the church, doing the flowers, cleaning brass, decorating at festivals to teaching for many years in Sunday School, Aunty Daisy was there. The elements could not stop her. Over ice and through rain, fog, thunder, heat-waves and floods (of which Bilden End has had quite a fair share) Aunt Daisy made her way to the church on the hill three times on a Sunday – Matins, afternoon Sunday School and then Evensong. Church fetes, treats and Christmas parties she took in her stride. She was more than a person – she was an institution – and she seemed as much part of the church as the prayer-desk itself.
For years Aunt Daisy was a member of the Parochial Church Council. How many times she wrote “D. M. Revell (Hon. Sec.)” at the end of the carefully compiled minutes I cannot estimate.
Aunt Daisy had a finger in many pies and she was very interested in village activities. She was a founder member of Chrishall Women’s Institute when it was established in 1926 and she was always one of the collectors for the numerous charity collections in the village.
There could not have been many square inches at Bilden End that were not known to Aunt Daisy and I am sure she had “the magic”. Come the 4th Sunday in Lent (Mothering Sunday), no matter how bleak and tardy the Spring in coming, when all around was rock-hard ground – sometimes frost-bound – she always managed to find flowers to make up her lovely little bunches. Her Sunday School children presented these to their mothers at their own special service. For the mothers, a purple and white violet, a snowdrop and a pussy-willow, given with love, were more precious than the rarest orchids could ever have been.
It was on March 8th 1974 “they” took Aunt Daisy to her beloved church for her very own special service, and that day she did not go back to her little cottage at Bilden End. Where else should such a loyal and totally dedicated lady lay but sleeping in the garden of her church?
And the corner of the choir-stall in the chancel where she sat for Divine Service for nigh on seven decades still looks very very empty.