Janet Clarke volunteered for Cheltenham Festivals for four years, but attended the Festivals for far longer than that with her brother. I grew extremely fond of Janet, her enthusiasm, her smile and her laugh, talking Italian to me when we were drawing up her volunteering schedule together, or just coming to say ‘hi’ to the Operations Team during the Festivals. Her energy and warmth would always cheer us up! She was a truly incredible woman.
Janet was a ‘people person’ and enjoyed helping on the Info Point, which means no doubt many of our audience would have encountered her. With her never-fading smile and her cheerfulness, she would help and talk to people and be a ray of sunshine in the Volunteers cabin and for whoever she met.
Born in Melbourne, Janet was very proud of being Australian. She lived in Italy for a year and worked in the hotel business in London, where she also created cultural projects with Italy to help disadvantaged communities in London. She moved to Cheltenham to join her family and worked as a NHS medical secretary in Gloucester and Cheltenham Hospitals. During her retirement, always eager to help and be active, she volunteered for many cultural organisations such as the Wilson and the Bacon Theatre.
Our thoughts and best wishes are with her family at this difficult time.