Blackpool landlady who performed as Tina Turner on X Factor was 'simply the best'

The funeral is set to take place this week of a Blackpool hotelier whose smile could light up a room and who once wowed the X Factor judges.

Friday, 9th November 2018, 2:42 pm
Updated Monday, 12th November 2018, 10:21 am
Joanie McKenzie performing as Tina Turner

Joanie McKenzie who ran the Cornhill Hotel with her husband Roger, died aged 72.

She had been battling with dementia for several years.

Joanie, who started singing as a child, was a regular performer in the resort and at the Cornhill with Roger accompanying her on the keyboard.

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Joanie McKenzie

But she is best known for appearing on TV talent show X Factor in 2012.

Joanie, dressed as one of her music heroes Tina Turner , impressed the judges blasting out Simply the Best in front of a packed audience at Event City in Manchester.

Her performance won praise from Take That star and judge Gary Barlow who said she must thrill the guests at the Promenade hotel.

Joanie had to get through five rounds of auditions to win her spot on the show.

She also appeared on Chris Evans’ Big Breakfast show representing Blackpool landladies as she performed Tom Jones’ hit The green Green Grass of Home on the beach.

Roger said: “After her appearance, she was back immediately organising breakfast for an astonished roomful who had watched her brilliant performance moments before.

"Rightly so, she got a standing ovation from our admiring guests who couldn't believe they were watching her on their bedroom TVs shortly before and then she was going round all the tables asking them their plans for the day and helping to clear the breakfast tables.

"Joanie had a killer smile which lit up a room and she was a fantastic singer. She was a great ambassador for Blackpool and was always willing to help charities out.

"I have had 35 wonderful years with her. I am and so proud and lucky to have had this warm beautiful lady in my life for the last 35 years."

The couple had six children, Darren, Cameron, Georgina, Lois Alfie and Scott, plus a host of grandchildren.

Joanie’s funeral will take place on Thursday , November 14 at 12.15 at Lytham Park Crematorium.

She will be taken to the service on a carriage pulled by two black horses from Box Brothers Funeral Directors in Hawes Side Lane shortly after 11am to the Promenade and then on to Lytham. Anyone who knew her is welcome to attend. The reception will be at Fylde RUFC.