28/11/2012 12:30 GMT | Updated 28/11/2012 12:31 GMT

Margaret Hughes, 91-Year-Old Killed In North Wales Floods, Was 'Active An Independent', Family Say

The family of a 91-year-old woman who died in floods which engulfed North Wales paid tribute today an "active and independent" mother and grandmother.

Margaret Hughes, who had been due to celebrate her 92nd birthday on Thursday, was found in her flooded home in St Asaph yesterday.

In a statement released by North Wales Police, her family said they were "devastated" by the news of her death.

margaret hughes

Margaret Hughes was found in her flooded home in St Asaph

Mrs Hughes, or "Maggie" as she was known, was described by her family as "independent and strong willed with a real sense of humour and fun".

The family statement reads: "Despite her frailty and age she was still very active and loved nothing more than entertaining her grandchildren and great grandchildren with cups of tea and mince pies with which she would overwhelm them particularly at Christmas."

Speaking from their Denbighshire home, Mrs Hughes's daughter and four grandsons and granddaughter spoke lovingly of their "Nain", saying she came from that "old stock" of Welsh farmers who carried on regardless of the circumstances, never complained or moaned and always put the wishes of others before her own.

They recalled how Mrs Hughes, while in her 80s, would take long walks collecting firewood and delivering bundles to her grandchildren, often using the bus to take the firewood to their homes.

The statement continues: "Margaret spent most of her early life working on farms, initially in Cerrig, near Corwen and then Plas Coch in St Asaph where she farmed with her husband for 18 years before moving into Tai'r Felin, St Asaph.

"The family are devastated by the news of her unexpected death." The family said she was still "full of life" and looking forward to Christmas.

They also passed on their sincere thanks for all the messages of support and good will but have now asked for privacy at this "very difficult time".

Residents in North Wales are setting up a fund for flood victims in the area.