Tribute from memorial by Puneet Singh

 
I first met Amber when she joined the Training Team here in 1999 on a 1-year contract. By then I was into the 3rd year of my 1-year contract as a systems engineer. In those early days Amber and I worked closely together as she wrote an array of training courses and guides for services that I ran. As you would expect from a good teacher (and a technophile), Amber was always keen to understand the technologies and be accurate on technical detail. My mornings would often begin with an email from Amber containing a variety of technical queries and ending simply with the question “Lunch?” What could be better than lunch with Amber and the promise of lots of “tech talk”?
 

Amber liked spending time with the “back room” technical staff. She loved some of the more geeky and eccentric personalities among us, and she was always amused at how bad we could be with actually using technology. She was so good at using technology herself that it’s no surprise that she was the one who introduced me to new things like Facebook and Twitter – although I still don’t really know what to do with them. 
 

A few years ago we ran a little competition that involved finding out various things about the members of the Systems Team, essentially by talking to us and asking us the right questions. The prize was “honorary” membership of the team. The combination of a competition and belonging to a team of geeks was too big a temptation for Amber - and the task was ideal for her. To us geeks, Amber’s natural communication skills were like special powers – and she used them well to extract the answers from us and win that competition. After that she would often remind me of her membership of the Systems Team, sometimes to wangle some sort of favour from me, but mainly because she enjoyed the added element of “geek chic” that it gave her.
 

Amber was a joy to be with, especially when she was being playful. She enjoyed the banter that often took place in our office and would inevitably get involved. She was very good at gently teasing us. On one occasion, after Amber had become User Services Manager, she wandered into one of my team’s more surreal and pedantic conversations. Amber then turned to me and said “They really shouldn’t be allowed to interface directly with users”.
 

Lunches, dinners, away days and other events that took us away from the office were the best occasions to see and enjoy Amber’s more relaxed and fun-loving side, although if some form of competition was involved, you could see quite a different side to her. She was warm and caring in the way she spoke and of course there was her wonderful smile, which was simply infectious. Whenever I pointed a camera at Amber I got an instant beaming smile back. Although, we didn’t always see the smile.
 

One time, the Systems Team went to a stand-up comedy night and I asked Amber to join us. To our great surprise, she didn’t laugh at anything! There were comments like “I don’t get it” and “Why’s that funny?” Recently we were reminiscing about this in the office, and Paul Jackson summed it up best when he said “Amber laughed more than any person I know, except at comedy”.

Amber would often come up with unusual but interesting places to go. The last time I went out with her was another typically quirky occasion. Amber had found out where to go to see the original sets and puppets for our childhood favourites, Bagpuss and The Clangers, so of course we had to go. It was great. We both loved it.
 

There was a great deal more to working with Amber but her smile, her warmth and her friendship are the things that I will remember most fondly.
 

Tribute from memorial by Puneet Singh

 
I first met Amber when she joined the Training Team here in 1999 on a 1-year contract. By then I was into the 3rd year of my 1-year contract as a systems engineer. In those early days Amber and I worked closely together as she wrote an array of training courses and guides for services that I ran. As you would expect from a good teacher (and a technophile), Amber was always keen to understand the technologies and be accurate on technical detail. My mornings would often begin with an email from Amber containing a variety of technical queries and ending simply with the question “Lunch?” What could be better than lunch with Amber and the promise of lots of “tech talk”?
 

Amber liked spending time with the “back room” technical staff. She loved some of the more geeky and eccentric personalities among us, and she was always amused at how bad we could be with actually using technology. She was so good at using technology herself that it’s no surprise that she was the one who introduced me to new things like Facebook and Twitter – although I still don’t really know what to do with them. 
 

A few years ago we ran a little competition that involved finding out various things about the members of the Systems Team, essentially by talking to us and asking us the right questions. The prize was “honorary” membership of the team. The combination of a competition and belonging to a team of geeks was too big a temptation for Amber - and the task was ideal for her. To us geeks, Amber’s natural communication skills were like special powers – and she used them well to extract the answers from us and win that competition. After that she would often remind me of her membership of the Systems Team, sometimes to wangle some sort of favour from me, but mainly because she enjoyed the added element of “geek chic” that it gave her.
 

Amber was a joy to be with, especially when she was being playful. She enjoyed the banter that often took place in our office and would inevitably get involved. She was very good at gently teasing us. On one occasion, after Amber had become User Services Manager, she wandered into one of my team’s more surreal and pedantic conversations. Amber then turned to me and said “They really shouldn’t be allowed to interface directly with users”.
 

Lunches, dinners, away days and other events that took us away from the office were the best occasions to see and enjoy Amber’s more relaxed and fun-loving side, although if some form of competition was involved, you could see quite a different side to her. She was warm and caring in the way she spoke and of course there was her wonderful smile, which was simply infectious. Whenever I pointed a camera at Amber I got an instant beaming smile back. Although, we didn’t always see the smile.
 

One time, the Systems Team went to a stand-up comedy night and I asked Amber to join us. To our great surprise, she didn’t laugh at anything! There were comments like “I don’t get it” and “Why’s that funny?” Recently we were reminiscing about this in the office, and Paul Jackson summed it up best when he said “Amber laughed more than any person I know, except at comedy”.

Amber would often come up with unusual but interesting places to go. The last time I went out with her was another typically quirky occasion. Amber had found out where to go to see the original sets and puppets for our childhood favourites, Bagpuss and The Clangers, so of course we had to go. It was great. We both loved it.
 

There was a great deal more to working with Amber but her smile, her warmth and her friendship are the things that I will remember most fondly.
 

Posted 2 years ago

About:

This is a place where we can remember Amber. A place where family, friends, colleagues, and anyone else she touched, can pay tribute, reflect, share their thoughts and celebrate her all too short but yet so full life.

As a bit of a geek and a gadget queen, Amber was always at the forefront of technology and an avid social media communicator. It seems fitting that this “virtual scrapbook” is her online memorial. Feel free to post text, share your photos and videos, or express yourself in any digital way you like.

(Please note that this blog is moderated and inappropriate comments will be removed)