It is my sad duty to report the passing of Jennifer Churchill at the age of 87 on Sunday 3rd of January. Jenny Churchill was a true stalwart of the thoroughbred breeding industry and undoubtedly one of its finest minds.
She was a gifted journalist with a truly encyclopaedic knowledge of thoroughbred pedigrees. Over the course of her long involvement in the industry she had turned her hand to breeding winners, to standing a stallion, to nightwatching during the foaling season,to being a long serving committeewoman of Thoroughbred Breeders NSW ( which honoured her with life membership ), and she was successful in all these endeavours.
Professionally she was noted for her column in The Land newspaper “Under The Fig Tree” which she handed over to Virginia Harvey in order to become the founding editor of STALLIONS 1989. She compiled it and the subsequent 25 editions by hand and remained a valued consulting editor until recently. But arguably her greatest contribution to thoroughbred history will prove to be the seminal 1000 page reference work Great Thoroughbred Sires Of The World, published in 2004. Jenny spent a dozen years meticulously researching the 205 stallions featured in the book. The print run of 2500 was completely sold out and is a testament to her skill. She wrote several of the feature essays and they are a tribute to her erudition and breadth of knowledge.
But Jenny will be best remembered for her love of life, for the great friendships she enjoyed with people from all walks of the industry, for the amazing nibbles and meals she produced on social occasions and stud visits, for her love of a good Scotch or two and for her kind heart. An obituary will appear in the January/ February issue of Bluebloods.