Judith Armstrong RIP 1950-2005


Sadly, Judith, Morris dancer and accordionist from Bacup, Lancs, passed away on the evening of Thursday 11th August 2005 at a local hospice, after a nine month battle with lung cancer (she never smoked). She was well-known in the morris world, having been a keen dancer with both Rochdale Morris (North-West) and Earl of Stamford Morris (Cotswold). She was also well known as a pub session musician, playing her Pigini accordion at many folk festivals, such as Sidmouth and Whitby, as well as at morris weekends.

She will be greatly missed, not only for her expressive accordion playing and fine dancing and singing, but also for the joy she radiated. She always seemed to be smiling, and always had a cheery word to say to everyone. She had a zest for life! It is truly tragic and cruel that her life should have been cut short in the way it was. Perhaps she is needed more in heaven.

She was also a much-loved teacher, teaching generations of Bacup children for 25 years at Sharneyford Primary School, until her illness. She had the rare ability to keep control of the classroom without even resorting to raising her voice, which was often commented upon by visitors. It was undoubtedly based on a mutual love between Judith and the children.

She leaves two grown-up daughters, Joanne and Katie, as well as her partner of recent years, yours truly.

The funeral service was held on Wednesday 17th August 2005 at 11.00 am, at Christ Church, Beech Street, Bacup.

Tom Mather