Death of smiling pier usherette mourned

Stars and staff at Cromer's pier theatre are mourning the death of head usherette Jenny Polydorou.For more than 30 years Mrs Polydorou's ever-present effervescent smile welcomed showgoers to the Pier Pavilion.

Stars and staff at Cromer's pier theatre are mourning the death of head usherette Jenny Polydorou.

For more than 30 years Mrs Polydorou's ever-present effervescent smile welcomed showgoers to the Pier Pavilion.

It was a smile that never waned during a nine year battle with cancer, which began in her breast and spread to her bones - but which she was determined would not spoil her enjoyment of life.

She died aged 66 in hospital last week from a sudden unrelated illness.


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Mrs Polydorou was just starting her 32nd year at the pier, and has worked at every season of the summer Seaside Special.

Director of pier operators Openwide International Rory Holburn, in a comment to a tribute site on Facebook said Jenny was a 'delightful lady with the most gorgeous smile and such a youthful exuberance for life.'

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Ventriloquist Steve Hewlett, a former summer show star, added 'Although you were very cheeky, your smile always won us over.'

And regular Seaside Special dancer Andy Young said he was sad and shocked at the death of 'a funny, warm lady who I will miss dearly' adding 'Just look at how many people you made feel special.'

Pier manager Ian Hall said Jenny had just started the new season, working at the Joe Brown concert two days before she was taken ill.

'She was wonderful and audience members used to ask for her. We are planning to put a special feature about her in the summer season programme,' he added.

Born in Bury St Edmunds Jenny moved to north Norfolk as a teenager, and worked at Barclays bank, Randalls at Cromer, Sidestrand Hall special school, and retired last year from the office at Kingsland Engineering in Sheringham.

She also helped at her in-laws restaurant the Continental in Cromer's Garden Street, run by Chris and Aggie Polydorou, whose son Mick she married in 1962.

But it was the bright lights of showbiz that Mrs Polydorou really enjoyed - thriving on the friendships she made at the pier theatre.

Cast members had lodgings at her Cromer home, and many kept in touch with her long after their spell at the seaside venue had finished.

Mrs Polydorou also enjoyed supporting her son Warren's performing career, which saw him in a group called Perfect World and doing backing dancing for singer Sinitta.

And she had a moment of TV fame appearing on Bruce Forsyth's generation game with her father Cyril Reach.

Her daughter Debbie Pointin from Norwich tragically died from cancer nearly three years ago.

A funeral will be held at Cromer's Our Lady of Refuge Catholic Church on Wednesday at 1pm, and afterwards at the Pier Pavilion.

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