ONE of Ashbourne's best-known characters, Phyllis Stubbs, has died at the age of 94.
Mrs Stubbs, a lifelong supporter of the area's farming industry, businesswoman and fund-raiser, passed away on Sunday and friends and family have paid tribute to a "lovely lady".
Mrs Stubbs will be known to many as the landlady of the former White Lion Hotel in Buxton Road, where she spent 27 years after taking over from her aunt.
A widow for nearly 60 years, Mrs Stubbs grew up among the farming community. Her family ran a farm in Ballidon. Her son, John, took up farming in Offcote, running the business and a sports shop in St John Street.
Although Mr Stubbs has now sold the business, his mother was a familiar face at the counter and she worked at the shop until it was sold.
Mrs Stubbs lived with her son at his farm and never lost her close ties with the farming community.
A past president of Ashbourne Show, Mrs Stubbs was life president of Ashbourne Farmers' Club and will always be remembered for her success in making sure everyone at club functions bought raffle tickets.
Barbara Temperton, who farms at Upper Castern Farm in Ilam, is the secretary of Ashbourne Farmers' Club.
She met Phyllis through the farming community and Ashbourne Young Farmers' Club and knew her for most of her life.
She said: "She's always been very well known to the agricultural industry in Ashbourne and would always support everyone and help them as much as she could, she was a lovely lady and will be very much missed.
"Everyone knew her and everyone loved her and she was active right up to the end. That was probably what kept her going."
Despite her problems with mobility in later life, Mrs Stubbs remained active in her 90s and enjoyed playing dominoes and whist with friends at the Shoulder of Mutton in Osmaston.
Landlady Tina Peach, who has been at the pub for 20 years, said Mrs Stubbs was "one of the characters".
She said: "We've known her for a long time and she knew everyone. She was always a friendly face and she was a lovely lady. She'll be very sadly missed."