A LIFELONG charity stalwart who spent the much of the last year as president of a Marlow organisation has died.

Evelyne Philpot lost her battle with cancer on Saturday at the Sue Ryder Hospice near Henley where she spent many years as a volunteer.

Despite her failing health, Mrs Philpot continued with her love of fundraising until just before her death as chairman of the Marlow Inner Wheel Club.

The 69-year-old widow was given the prestigous Margarette Golding Award in January in recognition of her 30 years service to charity.

The accolade has been awarded to only 250 of the club’s 100,000 members worldwide, and was witnessed by 90 wellwishers at an emotionally charged ceremony at Marlow’s United Reformed Church.

Fellow club member Joan Clerehugh said: "She was generous, friendly, full of fun, determined, courageous and a good friend and our Members have gained so much by knowing her and having her as our President.

"She was determined to do as much as she could for as long as she could, taking Meetings from a wheelchair and other Meetings at home when it became too difficult to go out.

"Her courage and determination have been an inspiration to everyone she has met."

The Inner Wheel club is the world’s largest women’s organisation, with branches in over 100 countries.

It was launched in 1924 by a group of wives of Rotary Club members and continues to pursue its goals of fundraising, service and friendship.

Mrs Philpott was a member of the Henley branch before joining Marlow’s Inner Wheel Club 18 months ago when the group closed.

Mator Suzanne Brown has paid tribute to the stalwart, whose charitable work includes fostering children, holding the secretary role for the RNLI and working with Project Vietnam Orphans, Guide Dogs for the Blind and Sue Ryder Care.

She said: "I have known Evelyne for just over a year and she was just the most amazing woman. Despite all the problems she faced she was always smiling.

"She was a credit to everyone and raised so much money for good causes. She is one hard act to follow."