Don't miss a story sign up to Sidmouth Herald's FREE daily newsletter CLICK HERE

Sidbury’s ‘tireless’ RBL secretary remembered

12:00 10 May 2014

Valerie Hull

Valerie Hull

Archant

Veterans, friends and family paid tribute to a ‘tireless and irreplaceable’ Sidbury resident as they looked back at her life last week.

Valerie Hull was the Sidford and Sidbury branch secretary of the Royal British Legion (RBL) into her later years, but she touched many lives before that.

With her husband Desmond she played host to the likes of the Red Arrows in their Orchardside restaurant, as well as a young James Last, who would go on to lead a world-famous orchestra.

But Valerie was ‘never one to sit still’, and she retired to become school governors secretary, a National Trust volunteer, a member of the conservative club and a keen painter.

Named after Valentine’s Day, she gained a reputation as a loving, overwhelmingly generous lady, with an energy that led her daughter Claire to nickname her ‘the Duracell battery’.

“Mum was always extremely hospitable, always involved in everything and so energetic,” said Claire. “Her going was totally unexpected, but she did everything at a fast pace. I would tell her to slow down but it just wasn’t in her makeup.”

Born and raised in Sidbury, Valerie passed her 11-plus to get into The King’s School before working as a personal assistant in London.

Valerie and Desmond built Orchardside as a guest house in 1961 before opening it as a restaurant in the seventies, where they were known for their home-cooked food.

They retired from Orchardside in 1987, moving to Exeter.

Desmond died in 1999, but Valerie continued in her usual busy way, and moved to Sidmouth’s Manor Road in 2006.

Speaking at her funeral at St Giles’ Church last Wednesday, Sir John Cave, the RBL Sidford and Sidbury branch president, said: “For these last six years she quite frankly ran the whole branch and we, officers and committee, fell in, and did as we were asked to enable the secretary to do so much more than was expected of just one individual.

“Valerie worked so hard for the branch and it is testament to her today that this church is so full, and particularly with British Legion members.

“Her roles will never be fulfilled by anyone else on their own; we will all miss her.’’

Valerie died on April 12 at the age of 81.

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Sidmouth Herald visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Sidmouth Herald staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Sidmouth Herald account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Other News Stories

From left to right, volunteers receiving their awards, Cliff Jones, Sue Dorey, Patricia Palmer, Dieter Ritz, Sandra Iris, Nick Povey, Carol Laird,  Julia Burdekin. They were joined by charity patrons Mike Welch & Mary King MBE

Helpers receive length of service awards from patrons Mary King MBE and Mike Welch.

Read more
11:38
Ref mhz Honiton Show promo.

Porkies family butchers are giving away a £50 voucher for your best picture

Read more

Sidmouth resident warns about thieves targeting rural car parks after her bag was snatched.

Read more
NATIONAL EXPRESS - 45 YEARS OLD
Pictured the August 7th 1965 Wedding Photo Album of Brian Lewis & Patricia Cavanagh at St Clements Church. The Photographic album was handed in after being found at Birmingham Coach Station and National Express would like to reunite the album with the family
FOR FURTHER DETAILS CONTACT: Ros Golds on  0121 460 8419 / 07825 976 593 or rosalyn.golds@nationalexpress.com
Picture by Adam Fradgley

A coach company is appealing to reunite a wedding album with its rightful owner – ahead of what would be the couple’s 51st anniversary.

Read more
06:24
Record breaking stunt cyclist Andrei Burton entertained students at Sidmouth College this week as part of their 50th anniversary celebrations. Ref shs 28-16SH 2311. Picture: Simon Horn.

Sidmouth College pupils enjoyed a special treat to mark the end of the school’s golden anniversary celebrations.

Read more
Yesterday, 16:46
Sidmouth Horse Trials

Processional animals are mane attraction at fun new feature

Read more
Yesterday, 15:34
Federation schools from Branscombe, Farway and Broadhembury took part in their own Olympics at the end of term. Ref shb 30-16SH 2831. Picture: Simon Horn.

Federation schools compete at Branscombe

Read more
Yesterday, 15:00
Having fun at the community festival. Ref shs 30-16TI 4736. Picture: Terry Ife

Community fun day

Read more
Yesterday, 12:59
police

Police are appealing for information after reports an 18-year-old was approached by three men

Read more
Yesterday, 12:30
Wally Cotgrave's golden voice has raised £40,000 for Help for Heroes. Ref shs 28-16SH 2006. Picture: Simon Horn.

A busking pensioner has raised more than £40,000 for a charity close to his heart – and wishes he had started earlier in life.

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 21°C

min temp: 14°C

Most Read News

Great British Life

Great British Life

Useful Links

Family notices
Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Submit a Story
Buy Photos
Competitions
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Image
Read the Sidmouth Herald e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Local business directory

Devon's trusted business finder

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists


Find planning applications