This article appeared in the Spring 1978 (Issue #51) edition of the Kent Archaeological Review.
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Mrs. CECILIE (LULLINGSTONE) ROOK
"She Charred for the Gods.".
Very many friends of Kentish archaeology will be sorry indeed to hear of the death in Hertfordshire on 19th October, 1977, of Mrs C. Rook. Many hundreds of diggers must have worked beside her as she indefatigably trowelled her way through the stratified deposits at the Lullingstone Roman villa site in the early days. Thousands more must have been grateful for her down-to-earth approach to guiding parties around the intricacies of Roman archaeology when she was custodian of the site until she retired in 1967.
In 1926 she married R J Rook ("Rooky", also of Lullingstone fame) and after an interesting and varied career the partnership arrived at Lullingstone in 1949 where both found their true vocation; providing a service to archaeology. Mrs Rook's lack of formal academic qualifications resulted in her having a very sensible and human outlook, which so often deflated the pretentious theoretician, but her quick intelligence made her a sympathetic listener. In the photograph, one which she fondly treasured, Mrs Rook is shown at work cleaning one of the mosaic panels at Lullingstone. It was published by the Daily Herald under the headline "She Chars for the Gods".
Mrs Rook usually came down to the CKA Canterbury Conference when her son Tony was a speaker. This year he came alone. Her work lives on in the present generation for her son Paul is the Chief Designer for Canadian National Museums and Tony is a writer and lecturer (in archaeology) and also the Education Officer of the Lockleys Archaeological Trust.
The CKA offers its sincere condolences to all the family and pays this small tribute to the passing of an era not forgotten.