Ali CroninAli Cronin

Your Nan Memories

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My grandma

My Grandma

She died from a broken heart

“My nan Margaret Rose passed away 2 years ago. The things that I really remember about her is she never had any teeth as she was scared of the dentist and when grandad annoyed her she would give him the index finger instead of the middle finger as she didn’t like swearing. I was with her when she passed which was difficult but I’m glad I was. I think of her often and miss her very much but have comfort from knowing she is now with my grandad as I truly believe she died from a broken heart.” Michelle

She made sure I felt inferior

“My granny suggested my father should divorce my mother because my mother couldn’t have kids (and carry on the family line) and they planned to adopt. But she relented when my parents adopted an angelic-looking blond boy. When my parents started proceedings to adopt me, granny was absolutely horrified because I’m eurasian. She made sure I felt I was inferior every time I visited her and I couldn’t understand why.” Tina

I saw her catch a burglar

“Gran was a Londoner, and I loved spending summer holidays with her in her flat. She took us to museums, exhibitions, concerts and parks.  She taught me to bake cakes, to love books, to play cards and dominos and to knit. She explained long division and tried hard to show me the trick to doing crosswords. She always listened to me. She had a very sharp sense of humour, and a streak of pure steel (I once saw her manhandle a burglar we’d disturbed, furiously pulling him back off a fence by grabbing his jacket. Afterwards she sat and cried and I was too young then to understand why). Sometimes, in London, after a long hot summer day it suddenly rains. The smell of rain hitting hot pavement instantly transports me back to the happiness of summers spent with Gran.” Aly 

She always makes me laugh

“My mum’s mum didn’t want to be known as grandma or nan, etc, as she thought it made her sound old, so she was known as Meggie to all 14 grandchildren. She passed away when I was 10, so I don’t have as many memories as I’d like. Tongue sandwiches, backgammon and a talcum powder puff by the bath all spring to mind, though. My other grandma is still with us. Her memory is going after a stroke this year. I don’t think she wants to be around much longer, especially after losing her youngest son a year ago, but she still makes me laugh every time I see her.” Hannah

I still can’t listen to ‘Amazing Grace’

“Sadly both my grandmas/nannies/grannies died before I was born… but I was lucky enough to have an amazing great great auntie Grace. She filled the roles of the two missing grandmas ten fold, with sleepovers most weekends where I sat burning straws in her log fire, always a present left by my bed, be it from the local jumble sale (!) or sweets… She had THE biggest heart. I played Amazing Grace on the sax at her passing. I still find it hard to listen to that song.” Caz

She passed away that night

“My fondest memory of my amazing Nanny  is of me and her sitting on her bedroom balcony which overlooked the best part of our town and me saying, ‘Nanny, I can see the whole world from here’. My last words to her as she lay ill in hospital were, ‘We love you very much, Nanny’. To which she replied, ‘ I know you do, love’. She passed away that night and I found out that I was pregnant with my daughter the following day. So bittersweet! What I would give to sit on that balcony again, Asti in hand (her favourite!) watching the sun go down.” Sophie

She always listened

“She’s my auntie but I used to call her Mum. She always listened to me. Still does, but it doesn’t stay in her mind long.” Helen


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