IN MEMORY of a much-loved villager, a life-saving gift has been presented to the community of Backbarrow.

Retired school caretaker and parish councillor Doreen Fell, 76, was tragically killed a year ago in a car accident while crossing the A590 dual carriageway.

The mother-of-three had been a stalwart of the Backbarrow community for most of her life and was renowned for her wealth of local knowledge and her talents as a confectioner.

The collection at her funeral was the start of fundraising by her family to give a defibrillator to Backbarrow Parish Council, on which she served for many years.

"The family wanted to give something back to the village Doreen loved so much, something that may save the life of maybe one of the many friends, villagers or visitors to the village," said her daughter-in-law, Jo Wolsey-Fell.

After gathering in more than £2,000, the life-saving equipment was presented to parish council chairman Cllr Gordon Egglestone. It has now been sited on the wall outside Hebron Hall Church at Brow Edge Road - "a place where Doreen drank many a cup of tea", said her family.

Training is being arranged for members of the village on how to use the defibrillator. Jo added: "We are sure if this opportunity had presented itself when Doreen was a resident in the village, she would have been one of the first in the queue to learn how to use it."

Mrs Fell's family said she loved Backbarrow, growing up there, attending the village primary school and starting her working life at Tysons bakery.

She and her husband Ken moved briefly to Ulverston when they married, but returned to Backbarrow and set up home in the former police station to raise their three children.

"Doreen was fully immersed in village life, a member of various committees and clubs everyone in the village," said Jo. "Everyone knew the Fells and there was always a cheery hello to passers-by."