PACKARD, Edith Celia

1871 - 1962

Edith Celia Packard, known as Celia, was born at Grove House, Bramford, Suffolk on 11 December 1871, one of the ten surviving of twelve children of Sir Edward Packard and his wife Ellen née Turner (4 February 1847-21 April 1927), who married at Ipswich on 23 May 1867, Celia's sisters included Katherine Mary Packard, Sylvia Packard and Winifred Packard. Like the rest of the Packard family, Celia took a keen interest in the arts and first exhibited in 1885 in the 2nd exhibition of art needlework by the Ipswich Fine Art Club. In 1895 she sailed around Britain with her father Edward, on his 40-ton yacht 'Britannia' and, like her father and siblings, a keen sailor, sailing on the rivers Orwell in Suffolk and the Crouch in Essex and, together with sister Nina, won the Burnham Week Regatta in her boat 'June'. In 1901, she was living at 13 Willoughby Road, Ipswich, the home of her brother Charles and his wife and she married at St Mary's church, Bramford on 4 May 1906, Alfred Farrar (1876-1917), who was in the Colonial Service, whom she met whilst staying in Sierra Leone with another of her brothers, Edward Turner Packard. After their marriage they lived in Sierra Leone where Alfred acted as Colonial Secretary 1909-1912 and later transferred to the Gold Coast (Ghana) as Assistant (Senior) Colonial Secretary by which time Celia had returned to England living at 68 Quilter Road, Felixstowe, Suffolk. Alfred received a commission in the 3rd Battalion Essex Regiment and seconded to the West Africa Frontier Force but tragically the S.S. Apapa, in which he was travelling to join his family on leave in England, was torpedoed off Lynes Point, Anglesey and he was drowned on 28 November 1917. They had two sons, Edward Norman Farrar and Austin Packard Farrar, neither of whom married, and in 1920 Celia took her sons to British Guiana to meet other members of the Farrar family. The 'Ipswich Journal' of 1 February 1896 records 'Cambridge University local lectures. The following list of successful candidates in the examination of Italian painting held at the close of Mr R.E. Fry's course of lectures in December...Celia Packard, Nina Packard...' and there are albums containing her paintings whilst living, or on painting trips to, Sierra Leone and Gold Coast circa 1895-1910 and on a Caribbean trip in the 1920s, which also took in British Guiana. In 1939, a widow living at 21 Links Avenue, Felixstowe, Suffolk. Edith Celia Farrar was of Orchard House, Stutton, near Ipswich when she died at the Ipswich & East Suffolk Hospital, Anglesea Road, Ipswich on 18 January 1962.