Tributes paid to popular school teaching assistant


Tributes have been paid to a woman who was a teaching assistant at a Broadfield school for more than 20 years.

Joan Reed, who worked at Broadfield North County First and Middle School from 1972 died, aged 83, on January 12.

Her son, Paul, 47, said she was one of its most memorable personalities. He went to the school, now Seymour Primary School, while his mother worked there.

He said: “She was a very fun person, she liked to laugh and she loved working with the kids.

“She was a very talented artist, she used to do a lot of art with kids.

“She got on very well with children because she could easily put herself down to their level.”

Ex-pupils paid tribute to Joan, who died after a ten-year battle with bowel cancer.

Commenting on social media, Steve Jones said: “RIP Mrs Reed, you will be missed greatly, fantastic lady and a truly lovely person. Sleep Well xx”

Shelly Hanslow said: “So sorry but what a beautiful angel we will all have looking over us.”

Joan saw comments about herself on the social media page arranging a school reunion in 2015.

She remembered former pupils’ names and hoped to attend the reunion.

Paul said: “She often said it was one of the most happy times of her life.

“They were debating who do you remember most from school.

“She was so pleased to see all these kids , whose names she can remember very well, as adults.”

She helped pupils create a mural for her schools’ art display in the town centre during the construction of County Mall.

Paul said she expressed her love for nature, particularly birds, through her paintings.

She was raised in rural Colchester, Essex.

Joan moved to Broadfield in the early 1950s.

She married Bertie Reed, 95, in Crawley in July 1966.

She was heavily involved a street party in Heather Walk on the Queen’s Silver Jubilee in 1977.

She cooked food and helped children with their fancy dress.

The Reeds moved to Coxcomb Close, Bewbush in the late 1970s.

Paul is an only child and father-of-two.

Joan died in East Surrey Hospital.