SHEILA Burt, nee Carr, who was the first ever telesales girl at the Dorset Echo, has died following a period of illness.

Sheila was born on Portland and lived all her life in Weymouth.

She was educated at St George’s Infant School on Portland, followed by Portland Secondary Modern School, and later trained as a book keeper.

She went on to become the first telesales worker at the Dorset Echo when it was based in St Thomas Street, and then went to work for Dream Cottages.

She was one of the first staff members with this company and was there as it developed into the successful business it is today.

Sheila married Trevor Burt and they had two sons, Anthony and Matthew.

They were together for 27 years before divorcing in 1999.

Sheila then spent many years with Robin Wilson. They met in 2005 and became great friends before then becoming partners.

Robin had served in the Royal Navy and together they became active members of the Weymouth branch of the Royal Naval Association. The association played a very important part in their lives and they went on social events and holidays with their many RNA friends.

Her son Anthony said: “Robin came into her life and made her very happy.

“She was always smiling, happy and going to different places and parties almost every day, many with the RNA where she was actively involved with Robin.

“In fact, many times I remember thinking: where does she find the energy – she’s out more often than I am?

“She was a massive fan of Cliff Richard and went to 25 of his concerts with her friends.

“It was a big part of her life.

“Mum was 65 when she died and it was far too young.

“She was a vibrant, caring, loving, beautiful person.

“She usually had a glint of mischievousness and a cheeky sense of humour.”

Sheila’s funeral takes place at 1pm on Thursday, October 18 at Weymouth Crematorium.