OBITUARY: Jean Herrema remembered as a talented artist, creative dressmaker and co-founder of Ely’s long-running Tuesday Group

PUBLISHED: 14:54 22 January 2018 | UPDATED: 14:55 22 January 2018

Jean Herrema pictured with her late husband Lieuwe.

Jean Herrema pictured with her late husband Lieuwe.


Jean Herrema, artist, dressmaker and co-founder of a long-running Ely women’s group, has died aged 86.

Jean was one of four women to launch The Tuesday Group in 1989. The group still meets on the third Tuesday of each month at the city’s Old Dispensary, providing members with an annual programme of guest speakers and outings.

Born in Norfolk, she moved to Ely at a young age and was educated at Ely High School for Girls before studying art at college in Cambridge.

A talented artist, her work was exhibited locally and in 1990 she provided the illustrations for the book Bon Appétit, a French-English menu dictionary written by cookery writer Judith A. White.

Jean was also a very creative dress designer and maker. Before marrying in 1957, she had worked as a demonstrator for Singer Sewing Machines and later went on to teach dress-making in evening classes in Ely.

She particularly enjoyed designing and making wedding dresses and countless brides walked up the aisle looking resplendent in one of her distinctive creations.

For many years she also ran a bed and breakfast business, providing a warm welcome for visitors to Ely from all over the world and keeping in touch with many of them for years after their stay.

The Tuesday Group Leader, Pam Austin said: ‘Jean was one of four women to have the vision and drive to launch our group, which is still going strong all these years later. Her legacy is in the vibrant and lively meetings our members all still enjoy.’

Jean Herrema died at The Firs Care Home, Little Downham on 13 January. The widow of the late Lieuwe Herrema, she is survived by sons Martin, Simon and Arnie.

Funeral service at Fenland Crematorium, March on Friday February 2 at 2.30pm. Family flowers only please, but donations, if desired, to Wood Green Animal Shelter may be left at the service or sent to Ely Funeral Service, 4 Tower Road, Ely Cambs CB7 4HW.


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