Una Lucy Silberrad

Una Silberrad was born on 8 May 1872 at Buckhurst Hill as one of nine children of a wealthy bulb merchant, Arthur and Clarissa Silberrad.

Lucy and her brother Oswald were to become nationally famous.

Una had a private education although she was unable to attend a University like her brothers and she discovered a talent for writing, performing and story telling.

He first public events were as part of evening entertainments given by her local church  which led to her being a mainstay as a young woman with a records of her adapting the panto ‘ Jack and the Beanstalk’ for local performances.

The first published work was later in 1896 when a short story ‘The Romance of the Moleskin Country’ was published in the Leisure Hour magazine.

Other short stories followed which led to her first book, The Enchanter, being published in 1899 and this was so successful that over forty novels followed and established her as a nationally popular and significant author.

Una was never shy of dealing with controversial issues especially those around women and included a Female Prime Minister in a 1909 book well before women had the vote and advocated  Cremation at a time when this had little support.

Despite writing many novels with a strong love interest she was never married herself and continued to live in her family home until 1932 when she and her sister moved to Wick Farm, Burnham on Crouch.

Now aged 60 the Misses Silberrad entered into local life joining the new Burnham WI and Una brought together a company that performed plays, usually written or adapted by Una on local stages.

Una was a committed member of the Church of England and regularly attended St Mary’s Church at Burnham on Crouch even though it was some distance from Wick Farm.

On 28 August 1955 she had just arrived home from evensong when she suffered a stroke and quickly died.

Her funeral took place at The Church that she loved so much and she was then buried in nearly Burnham Cemetery.