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Film group celebrate Batley’s Singing Mill Girl!

Meadow Green Extra Care service in Kirklees welcomed Bradford University Film School on Friday, who came along to meet a very special lady with a remarkable story.

Doreen Fletcher, who has lived at Meadow Green Lodge since September 2014 was filmed by Bradford students for a feature on local artists, both past and present called ‘Seen on Screen’.

Under her previous name of Doreen Kerfoot, she hit the big time in the 1940s as the famed Batley’s Singing Mill Girl. As a weaver at Batley Carr’s Joseph Newsome’s woollen mill (now known as Redbrick Mill), she entered a competition to become the female face of the industry, as bosses looked to encourage more females to consider it as a career.

After making it through to the finals, Doreen was crowned The Yorkshire Wool Queen, and was the star of The Three Piece Suit (1947), a film in Bradford, Dewsbury and London about the industry which was shown at exhibitions across the country. Doreen then went on to enjoy many years successfully modelling, acting and singing – and was a firm favourite amongst those at home and away in the Armed Forces!

Aneeqa Ali, Scheme Manager at Meadow Green says: “It’s a privilege for us to have Doreen here at Meadow Green Lodge – she’s an amazing lady with a super voice! Thanks to the team at Bradford University, we’re really looking forward to seeing the film and are delighted to see Doreen recognised for her special talent.”

Update: January 2017. Born on the 10th May 1927, and celebrating her 90th birthday in 2017, it’s also 70 years since making the film Three Piece Suit.

To see Doreen in ‘Seen on Screen’, produced by Bradford UNESCO City of Film and featured as part of the Bradford International Film Summit 2015, please click here.

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