Tributes have been paid to a former St Albans GP and school doctor Joan Fitt, who has sadly died aged 98. 

Born in Lancashire in 1924, Joan moved to St Albans in 1954 after meeting her husband in France. 

Her work in the area began with doing locums for local GPs; sometimes the pay included a pheasant!

Later, she did child health clinics and finally she became a GP based at a surgery in Fleetville. She was also the school doctor for St Albans High School for many years.

Joan lived her life according to her motto ‘Que sera sera (whatever will be will be)’.

Herts Advertiser: Dr Joan Fitt died on April 3, aged 98

Throughout her life, she had to adapt to many challenges, though she never complained. When she qualified as a doctor from Edinburgh University in July 1946, she had not seen her parents or older siblings since 1940 - they were in Mozambique, South Africa and a Japanese prisoner-of-war camp, thousands of miles away.

Born in Warrington, she spent her childhood in Madeira, where she was swimming in the sea by the age of three, and France, where she became fluent in French, her first language. She moved to the UK in 1937 at the age of 13.

Having met her husband Donald in France, she moved to St Albans in 1954.

By 1957, he had died of chronic nephritis, leaving her with three children under five - Bruce, Rosalind and Donald.

Herts Advertiser: Joan was a longstanding member of Verulam Golf Club and Lady Captain in 1993 to 19994,

"Life cannot have been easy, yet she never lost her temper." her children recalled. 

After retiring, she was able to indulge her many interests. She and fellow ex-GP Dr Jean Roberton played tennis in many countries, including Israel, USA and Sweden, with the World Medical Tennis Society.

She was a longstanding member of Verulam Golf Club and Lady Captain in 1993-94, as her mother-in-law had been in 1939-40.

She carefully studied family genealogy and wrote five books. Her research uncovered many interesting stories, including that of an ancestor sent to Australia as a convict in 1843.

She always enjoyed family events and was very supportive of both the immediate and wider family by whom she is fondly remembered.

Her eulogy read: "Joan, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother, you will be fondly remembered by us all for the positive impact you have made on our lives."

All are welcome at a Thanksgiving Service to be held at 1.30pm on Tuesday, June 6 at St Albans Cathedral.