Bertie Cecil Lloyd was born in Manly 14 November 1912. Her early schooling was at the Hillview College, which later closed.
After the family moved to Gordon, Bertie Lloyd attended Presbyterian Ladies’ College at Pymble during its first decade, leaving in 1928 due to illness. Bertie’s sister Gwenyth also attended the College, leaving in 1934, and her great-great niece is a current student at Pymble. Bertie became a close friend of former student Dame Joan Hammond, with whom she corresponded over Dame Joan’s lifetime.
Bertie joined the Voluntary Aid Detachment (VAD) and worked at Lady Gowrie Red Cross Convalescent home. In 1939, she enlisted and served at the 12th Australian Camp Hospital located at the old Sydney Showground at Moore Park in Sydney. She was known as Private Bertie Cecil Lloyd NFX 131142, Australian Army Medical Women’s Service (AAMWS).
After Bertie was discharged, she continued her work with the VAD for a decade, nursing returned servicemen. Her narrative of her life and war service prove enthralling listening and was recorded in 2004 for the Australians at War Film Archive, University of New South Wales.
Bertie describes caring for her family and working post-war in nursing homes, a ski shop, in cosmetics for Lancôme and Estée Lauder, and in antique shops. She was still working in a Gordon antique shop into her 90s. In later life, Bertie lived at the Lady Gowrie Retirement Village in Gordon.
Bertie was Pymble’s oldest living ex-student and guest of honour for the opening of the Centenary Sports Precinct in 2016. In April 2017, she was honoured with a plaque for the Centenary Sports Precinct.
Bertie is quoted in the Centenary book, Pymble Ladies’ College 100 Years – 1916 to 2016.
“We were proud of everything we did at PLC. We were taught to respect our parents, our teachers and to love our school. I am proud to be a Pymble girl.”
Bertie was just shy of her 105th birthday when she passed away and she will always be remembered as a treasured member of the Pymble community.