Elaine Potts was born in October 1942 under the star of Libra. After leaving school her first job was with ‘British Aluminium’ where she worked until it closed only a few years later. She then became a telephonist at the local GPO Telephone exchange.
Elaine who loved dancing met her husband Mike at The Crystal Ballroom in Royal Newcastle-under-Lyme. She was aged just twenty but she remembers quite clearly that Andy Williams was singing “Moon River” on the night they met.
After their first encounter they seemed to be “after the same rainbow’s end” so on her twenty first birthday they announced their engagement to be married. Ever practical they immediately began to build themselves a house where after becoming married in 1965 they would live out their entire married life.
The house took two years to build and they worked every evening and weekend to complete it. Mike’s father was the builder so he supervised development using Elaine and Mike as “his labourers”
Soon after her first son was born in 1969, Elaine retired from full time work to concentrate on raising a family. It was not long before it grew to become four men in her life as she added two more sons to complete it.
Elaine became a Justice of the Peace 1983 giving her services to the bench for next twenty nine years.
Her husband was an accountant and became the company secretary to Stoke on Trent Football Club where they both spent many happy years becoming close friends with the footballers and their families.
Elaine and her husband also enjoyed many holidays with football legends such as Jimmy Greenhoff and Alan Hudson.
Her husband was great friends with football hero Stanley Matthews who after he retired could always be seen sitting with Elaine as they both watched the Stoke City matches. Such was their friendship he would also call in every day to her husbands office to enjoy a chat over coffee.
Their lives continued to be happy and idillc until receiving devastating news that her husband had been diagnosed with stomach cancer. They were allowed no time to process that shock as he died ten days later.
Although Elaine has had many years to come to terms with her loss, when she was recently asked how she had coped at the time, her answer exposed the deeper emotions she had concealed for all those years. After a thoughtful moment Elaine gave this reply:
“You just have to make another life!…….but it’s not easy…….because when you have a family they don’t want to see their mother with her head in her hands or upset…..so I did it for their benefit not my own.”
Her reply emphasised how she always puts the needs of others before her own.
After her husband’s death Elaine gifted her time to several charities. She began working at the Douglas MacMillan coffee shop at the crematorium as a volunteer then became a member of The Moorland Fund Raisers which involved creating and running an annual event to raise money for a needy local charities.
Three years later she became a committee member for the NSPCC where she remains well respected for the contributions she continues to make during their many meetings and functions.
When asked “what would say to young people starting their lives today?” without hesitation she said this:
“You must always try and live your life as happy as possible but you must also be kind to people and treat them as you would like to be treated yourself.”