Joan Stangroom, long-time fan and supporter of Borrowdale Park and racing in general, passed peacefully in KZN on Friday November 20, and our thoughts are with her much loved family at this difficult time.
I don’t know if Joan ever had a share in a racehorse but she worked tirelessly in the interests of Borrowdale Park, and retained that keen interest even after moving down south.
It all began when Joan was a super secretary at Mashonaland Holdings in the time of TC Hardy and Mike Joughin, both actively involved in the affairs of MOTA and the MTC. Joan was soon press-ganged into becoming MOTA Secretary, and when she left Mashonaland Holdings, she worked full-time for MOTA from the TBA offices at the racecourse.
Jackie Cocksedge recalls, “In those days MOTA probably had a membership in excess of 1000, so a lot of admin and organisation was involved. Joan was very, very efficient, always smiling and she never lost her sense of humour.”
Joan, with her warm and outgoing personality, made many friends in racing over the years. She kept in touch during regular visits to Harare until health issues interfered – and she will be missed. She was a passionate, hands-on gardener, and used to beg me to “get rid of those awful things, they will just take over” – not realising I was thankful they were at least prolific.
If you are looking down from your cloud, Joan, you will be pleased the drought and a failing borehole have taken care of those things.
Bye for now, Joan. The memories will linger.