Business icon Doreen Lofthouse never lost her love of Fleetwood
Tributes have poured in following the death of Fleetwood business legend Doreen Lofthouse, who helped to make the Fisherman's Friend lozenge a global brand.
Mrs Lofthouse, who died in Blackpool Victoria Hospital yesterday at the age of 91, was not only a phenomenally success businesswoman but a major benefactor for the town she loved..
Among many acts of generosity, Mrs Lofthouse donated £1 million towards the Mount restoration project, and more than a decade ago donated another £1 million towards renovations of the former Fleetwood Hospital building.
She also donated money towards one of the town's lifeboats and made a major contribution to the statue of the town's founder, Sir Peter Hesketh Fleetwood, among others.
Margaret Daniels, chairman of Fleetwood Civic Society, said: "Doreen was our honorary president.
"She was very important to Fleetwood, she really loved this town and did what she could for it.
"When plans were being made to try and set up a statue to the town's founder, she didn't think twice about making a substantial donation."
David Pearce, chairman of the Jacinta Charitable Trust. and a former Gazette and Fleetwood Weekly News journalist, said: "I first met the Lofthouse family more than 60 years ago when her later husband Tony and I were pals at school.
"Later in life as a local journalist I wrote about the success of the Fisherman's Friend brand, developed by Doreen.
""She had great business ability and shrewd acumen.
"The Lofthouses backed various community projects in Fleetwood which I was a part of, like the celebrations for Fleetwood's 150th birthday and the Jacinta heritage trawler project.
"They used money for their very successful business in an attempt to make Fleetwood a more attractive place for people who lived there and visitors.
"But by building their company they did something else very important - they created jobs in a town where work can be hard to find."
oun Mary Stirzaker, chairman of Fleetwood Town Council, said: "Mrs Lofthouse's legacy will live on in Fleetwood.
"She was an incredible benefactor for Fleetwood and was always proud of the town she came from."
Garry Payne, Chief Executive of Wyre Council, and Coun David Henderson, leader of the council, said in a joint statement: "We are deeply saddened to hear of Mrs Doreen Lofthouse OBE’s passing.
"Mrs Lofthouse was a true pioneer of Fleetwood and her generosity has helped to transform Fleetwood including the recent Mount Pavilion and gardens restoration project, as well as help to fund community groups.
"She was a woman who deeply cared about the town and I thank her for everything she has done.
"Our thoughts are with her family at this devastating time."