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Page updated - 22 May 2011


Jacqueline Jouet


Jacqueline Jouet was born in London of French parents during the 1940’s. She spent her young life there and at the age of twelve, realising at that early age she loved music, she started singing lessons. Her parents were very opposed to her taking this seriously so it wasn’t until Jacqueline started work as a Junior Secretary at the Hoover factory on the Great West Road she was able to pay for her own professional lessons.


Married at nineteen, there followed three children, two sons and a daughter. The young family lived first in Buckinghamshire, moved to Oxford, then when the children were young moved back to Boxford, Suffolk. In 1973 Jacqueline and her husband, Jonathon, bought a plot of land at the top of Kings Hill and he proceeded to build the house in which they brought up their family. Jacqueline’s son lives there now whilst Jacqueline lives next door.


In 1984 Jacqueline’s brother, a professional singer, who had appeared in the West End shows ‘Hello Dolly’, ‘Side by Side’ and ‘Oliver’ to name but a few, persuaded her it was time she relinquished her amateur status and joined him and the professional pianist Peter Durrent – who was then pianist at The Swan at Lavenham. Then begun the act that performed at various theatres for several years, getting as far as London’s ‘fringe’. Jacqueline says it cost £500 to hire a theatre then if you were not a Charity, certainly a lot of money in those days, The Swan at Lavenham was the venue for the three of them to perform Musical Evenings. After her brother retired Jacqueline and Peter continued their act and did a series of shows at Hintlesham Hall as well as several at Sudbury Town Hall.


In 2001 Peter and Jacqueline’s partnership broke up and for several years Jacqueline worked with the late Gilly Harris, the well-known local pianist and organist who played regularly at St. Gregory’s church. They joined forces with an accordionist, Peter Chappell, and performed French evenings at several local venues. Jacqueline appeared at The Quay as ‘The Merry Widow’ in 1988. She has also sung in the Olde Tyme Music Halls there on several occasions.


Unfortunately Jacqueline’s marriage ended in divorce in 1990, but she and her ex-husband remain friends and she is surrounded by her family, apart from the son who lives next door her second son lives locally. Her daughter also plans to move back to Suffolk in the summer from her home in Gloucester. Her eldest son is an accomplished artist, her second son is a musician and her daughter is also an artist – certainly an artistic family.   All her five granddaughters sing so music is certainly in the genes.


More recently Jacqueline has sung for Breast Cancer fundraising at Sudbury Town Hall and gives freely of her time and talent at local Nursing Homes.  She has also in the past worked as a Carer at both The Firs and The Dell so she knows how much pleasure it gives to the residents to have live entertainment.


Jacqueline is a committed Christian, she attends St Andrew’s Church, where she sings in the Choir, not the first Church choir she has sung with as she used to attend All Saints Church in Sudbury and belonged to their Choir.


This lady told me she did not think she was interesting enough to appear on the front of Cornard News – having met her and had the opportunity of hearing about her life, I beg to differ, I think she has used her talent to enrich the lives of many people, some of whom are less fortunate than most of us.



Doris Rowland – Cornard News (Cornard News) – 08 April 2011