Tributes flood in for former teacher and scout leader Phyllis Manning MBE

Phyllis Manning MBE, died on Monday at Santander bank in Mare Street. Picture: Hayley Madden

Phyllis Manning MBE, died on Monday at Santander bank in Mare Street. Picture: Hayley Madden - Credit: Archant

Tributes have flooded in for “Hackney stalwart” Phyllis Manning who died from a heart attack last week.

Mrs Manning, who was made an MBE for her services to scouting in 1998, collapsed inside Santander in Mare Street last Monday and was pronounced dead at the scene, aged 82. She had been suffering from heart disease.

The former teacher started her career at St Thomas’s Primary School near Clapton Common in 1950 and moved onto various schools both in and out of the borough before retiring from her role as a special needs advisor at Haringey Council in 1992.

After retiring, she served as a governor at The Urswick School in Paragon Road, Hackney.

She had a lifelong passion and dedication to the scouts association and first got involved with the 14th Hackney St-John-at-Hackney scout group in 1946.

Jim Phillips, group scout leader 14th Hackney St-John-at-Hackney, said: “Phyllis was truly an amazing lady. She got to the highest levels of scouting including an award for 60 years of service and a silver wolf award (the highest award made by the scout association).”

“She had a big part in the group and was the longest serving member when she died.

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“She did not have a bad bone in her body and she couldn’t see any wrong in anybody. She pushed people “to do their best”.

“Her career as a schoolteacher lent itself to the scout ethos. Right up until her last breath she was teaching.”

She was also the longest surviving parishioner at St-John-at-Hackney church in Lower Clapton Road – being able to recall a fire which devastated the church in 1955.

Father Rob Wickham, Rector of Hackney, said: “Hackney has lost one of its most influential and supportive citizens and ambassadors.

“Over many decades Phyllis dedicated herself to serving the local community through her work as a school governor, through her support of local NHS trusts and her lifelong love and dedication to God.

“She was a Hackney stalwart and an independent woman of great strength. She will be greatly missed.”

Her daughter Diane Manning, 53, speaking on behalf of the family, said: “Mum had a good sense of fun and enjoyed life. She loved jazz and swing bands and played saxophone in an all-girl band when younger. But at the end of the day no matter how dynamic and amazing she was, she’s our mother and we love her.”

Mrs Manning is survived by her children Diane, Penny, Simon and Phillip, five grandchildren and two great grandchildren.

Her body will be at GR Moss & Co, Clapton Road from today (Thursday) until her funeral on Tuesday at 1pm at St-John-in-Hackney church.

n The Manning family have requested well-wishers to donate to charity rather than buy flowers including St Joseph’s Hospice ( and 14th Hackney scout group (