Tributes to Bridie MBE

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A school lollipop lady who was honoured by the Queen for her 32 years of early mornings and safe crossings has died, aged 71.

Bridget Matley - known as Bridie by generations of children - received an MBE two years ago in the Queen’s New Year’s honours list for services to the community after three decades helping pupils at Our Lady of the Assumption Catholic Primary School, Marton, safely to their lessons.

Mrs Matley, who died from a vascular disease, was well known for singing to the children as she shepherded them across Common Edge Road.

Now her daughter Julie Smith has led the tributes to the much-loved lollipop lady, who was married to husband Edwin for more than 54 years.

She said: ‘My mother knew generations of children at the school and loved them all. During her later years she was seeing the children, and even grandchildren, of the pupils she first helped cross the road.

“She was thrilled to receive the MBE and loved her day meeting the Queen at Buckingham Palace. The children will be devastated to hear she has passed away.”

Mrs Matley, of Lennox Gate, South Shore, retired in 2012 due to ill health.

At the time, she said: “I’ve seen all sorts of people over the road in my time and seen them all grow up. I’ve been very lucky really, I got an MBE and went to meet the Queen.

“I had to take a DVD back to show to the children so they could see it.”

A special service was held at Our Lady of the Assumption church attended by 100 of Mrs Matley’s friends and relatives to mark her retirement.

A service will be held at the same church on August 12 at 12.30pm followed by cremation at Lytham Crematorium at 1.30pm. She is survived by husband Edwin, a retired British Nuclear Fuels charge hand, daughters Julie and Susan Isaacs and son Edward, who lives in Canada.