Elizabeth Dekeuwer

Isbergue Marie Elizabeth Dekeuwer was born on 7 Aug 1900 near to Dunkirk, France and came to England as a Nanny to the young Downing family in Edgbaston in the 1920’s. She was affectionately known as ‘Nan’ and features in numerous family photos.

Molly Downing had worked for fifteen months in the Queen Alexandra Hospital in Dunkirk 1917-1918. Although she was familiar with the Dunkirk area and was both a French speaker and Francophile, it is not believed there was any direct connection with the Dekeuwer family. The recruitment process was probably through an agency or advertisement. However, this background meant that there was certainly an instant rapport between the young ‘nanny’ and the new and growing family.

Nan settled permanently in England and married Charlie Sandells in Smethwick in 1937. She died in Quainton on 16 Aug 1990.

Last updated on 30 September 2021 by JJ Morgan