TRIBUTES have been paid to a former Hampshire lollipop lady who was adored by schoolchildren – if not BMW drivers.
Fondly known as the “BMW Wrecker” after she was forced take action with her lollipop when one failed to stop for her, Hazel Broadway was a well known face around the Southampton area.
Up until three years ago, when not armed with her lollipop in Woolston, the 84-year-old was a regular sight on her bike around the city, visiting the local markets and chatting to anyone she met on the way.
The grandmother of three has passed away after a battle with dementia. She also suffered problems after a hip replacement last year which left her in hospital until February.
Her daughter Mariea Cawthorne described her mother as an amazing woman, who will be missed by all those who knew her.
‘Amazing’ Hazel came to Southampton in 1964 from Jamaica, where she came to live with her British husband whom she had met when he was stationed out in Jamaica with the British Army.
For many years the mother-of-three was a cleaner for various businesses in the city, including Vosper Thornycroft and the Royal South Hants before retiring five years ago.
However, having worked all her life, she found it difficult to take it easy and soon found a job as a lollipop lady, first working the crossing at St Patrick’s school and then the corner of Obelisk Road and Oak Road.
Within weeks she became a firm favourite with the schoolchildren and their parents and even got the chance to share a dance with Strictly Come Dancing star Anton Du Beke.
Hazel on her wedding day
Mariea, 53, from Woolston, said: “She was so well known in Woolston and across the city because she was such a character.
“She was very gregarious and very outgoing. She loved to play pranks on us when we were little and she just chatted to everybody, which sometimes would get her into trouble.
“She was so well-loved within the community and a regular sight on her bike around the city.
“That is why we would absolutely love for people to come along and celebrate her life with us. We want people who knew my mum to have a drink and dance because that is what she would have been doing.”
Hazel died on June 7 at St John’s Nursing Home, in Rownhams.
All are welcome to attend her funeral which will be held tomorrow at the New Testament Church of God, in St Denys, at noon, followed by a burial at St Mary Extra Cemetery at 2pm.