Our Meeting with Joyce Broughton

by Sylvain Descoteaux 

Well here is the story on how we were fortunate to spend some time with the wonderful miss Joyce Broughton, while we were at the monster rally 99. It was on the Saturday morning, the second day of the monster rally. I was on cloud nine, and very much still excited by what had happened the previous day, and that was, meeting Mr. Lee in person, and having him right there in front of me while he signed my copy of his autobiography. So, on that next morning, we just had finished breakfast , and found ourselves in the hotel lobby ,still very excited about what was coming up , and all that lay ahead of us.

It was there while we were just talking, me, my wife and my brother in law that I recognized her. I said right away to my wife, “there, this is Joyce Broughton,!” my wife and her brother already knew who she was because I had told them about her . I decided to introduce myself to her and asked my wife if she could take a photo of me with her. I approached her and very shyly told her that I was a member of the Peter Cushing Association (from which she is the honorary president) and asked her if I could have my picture taken with her. With a wonderful smile and very kindly she accepted ,and my wife took the photo. I shook her hand and thanked her and she replied that it was very nice meeting us all.

Then, as I was walking away very happy to have met her, Joyce herself approached the desk clerk of the hotel, and said a few words to her. I did not hear what she said (probably too excited) but my wife’s brother did! He turned to us and said, “hey you know what? She is looking to have her hair done! Indeed , she was trying to find a beauty salon close by, so that she could have her hair done for her afternoon’s appearance on stage at the rally. I looked at my wife, and saw a sparkle in her eyes, and the funny thing is that without knowing exactly why, she had brought along all her hair stylist “equipment” combs ,blow dryer, shampoo’s & conditioners, curling irons etc….. Go ask her she said!!! Well I did not need to be told again , and I went back to see her right away.

I said “ miss Broughton, we overheard that you’re looking for a salon, well, my wife is a hair stylist, and she has everything needed with her, if I may ask, she would be honored if she could do your hair. Joyce said , “you’re sure it’s not too much trouble?” to which we replied of course that nothing would give us more pleasure than if she accepted. It was Ok, and by another coincidence, she was staying on the same floor of the hotel as us. So we went up and went to our room, but when we arrived there, we found out that my sister was still asleep. Joyce offered us then, to go to her room instead. Renee my wife picked up all of her gear and we followed Joyce to her room.

We spent such a wonderful moment with her then, and let me say that Joyce is the kindest, friendliest, and warmest lady you could ever meet..

Of course at first, we talked about Peter Cushing. Joyce knew that we were fans, and in fact she was always delighted to talk about her “Sir” as she called him. You could feel ,when she talked about Mr. Cushing, that she really missed him a lot, and like she mentioned at one point, one of the things that she missed the most she said, was his wonderful laughter.

So , just before my wife started, we talked a little about “sir” and because I had just bought Mr. Cushing’s biography also, I asked Joyce if she could sign it for me. She did of course write a very kind little note for me, but she also gave me something that I will treasure always, it was a simple little piece of paper with this message on it: Peter Cushing O.B.E.
May God’s blessing be with you always, In all sincerity. And the message was signed by the hand of “sir” himself
She also showed me and Renee a copy of the very rare book that Mr. Cushing wrote and also illustrated called , “The Bois Saga” She only had brought one copy with her , but when she saw the look on my face when I saw the book, she promised to send me a copy as soon as she would be back in England. The book came in the mail, about a month after the rally, and it is another treasure for me that I will never part from.

Then Renee started working on Joyce’s hair., shampoo, conditioners scissors etc…. The talking now was a little more “beauty salon oriented” with Joyce and Renee talking a little more about family ,children etc.. I remember Renee asking Joyce how was really Mr. Cushing, and Joyce replied that “Sir” was a real, if not the ultimate gentleman, in fact she said that if he would have been in the room when we entered, He would have stood up right away and when introduced to Renee, he would have kissed her hand, he always was like that . That same afternoon, she shared a lot of unique anecdotes on Peter Cushing, and this time all the fans were there to listen . It even became very emotional at one point , when Joyce talked about the last moments of “Sir” in this world, and I remember that a lot of people (me included) had tears in their eyes.

So we spent a wonderful moment with a wonderful lady, and that afternoon, when she went up on stage to talk to the fans about Peter Cushing, she even mentioned Renee’s name to the crowd , and my wife got a round of applause for the way Joyce’s hair looked.

Before the rally was over, we met Joyce again for a few minutes, exchanged addresses, and believe it or not, we even got a Christmas card last December.

She truly is a kind lady and we were very fortunate to spend that moment with her. It’s easy to see why Peter Cushing and Joyce Broughton were so close after spending all those years close to each other, it’s simply because they are both exceptional human beings

COPYRIGHT 2001 - Sylvain Descoteaux 

First picture: Renee, Joyce, and Francine. Second picture: Joyce and Sylvian.

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