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Gertrude Elizabeth Mary Payne

Gert c. mid 1890s

Charlie's sister 'Gert', was referred to as such in his diaries, or occasionally as "Gertie " or "G.". Gert was almost two years younger than Charlie and was born in Westminster on 31 July 1885. Many of the family were of small stature, including her mother Emily, but Gert was particularly so, probably being only some 4' 6 inches in height at adulthood. It seems that she received at least some of her schooling away from home. At the time of the 1901 census she was boarding at Queen Anne's School in Caversham (near Reading). the school, like Emanuel School (attended by Charlie) was part of the Grey Coat Hospital foundation in Westminster. During 1903 and 1904, she appears to have been living at home

Gert c. 1905

intermittently, and was probably away studying to become an apothecary, the profession she pursued in later life.

Chris Payne (her great-nephew) recalls Gert in the 1960s as a very kind and entertaining great-aunt, living in an upstairs apartment at 22 Pepys Road, New Cross, London, equipped with an aspidistra in her living room, and still working as an apothecary/pharmacist. She never married, though family conversation suggested that Gert had a 'sweetheart', "Harry", who died during the First World war from dysentery while serving in East Africa. Gert and Charlie appear to have been good friends. Gert was 88 when she died at Miller Hospital, Greenwich, on 16 August 1973.

Gert at the 1968 wedding of a great-niece, complete with Edwardian boater