Friedel Löwenhardt of Oberhausen escaped from the Nazi’s in 1939 and for some reason landed in Belfast, Northern Ireland. From the late 1940s until her death in 1983 she worked for – and lived with – the Besser family at 7, Sandringham Court in London. Margot Besser headed the design department of the ETAM fashion company, her husband Kurt represented a zipper firm. Friedel was their nanny, house maid and Margot’s companion. With the Bessers, Friedel visited the West London Synagogue at Upper Berkeley Street.
The Bessers wished to adopt a girl – but on condition that Friedel would raise the child. Friedel agreed, and in 1952 Natalie, then eight years old, came to live with them. The picture was taken in London in 1965 at Natalie’s wedding: Friedel (left, with rose decoration) with Margot.
Kurt Besser died a year after the wedding, Margot in 1978. In August of that year the Association of Jewish Refugees announced that Margot Besser, of 7 Sandringham Court…, passed away in Italy on 2 July. Deeply mourned and sadly missed, by her daughter, Natalie, son-in-law, Bernard, granddaughters, and her beloved Friedel, companion for thirty years… Arrangements had been made so that Friedel could continue to live in the apartment – with her black poodle named Othello – until her death.