Birthday centenarian Dorothy Stafford insists: “I still have my marbles!”
The secret of her long life is: “I have never smoked, I have never boozed. I have had only one man in my life and I am still in love with him.”
Dorothy celebrated her 104th birthday on Wednesday at Kings Court Nursing Home in Swinegate, Grantham. She recalled being born in Newark, with her father Joseph being stationmaster at Claypole.
Dorothy had two sisters, a brother and children Carol and John, who are sadly no longer with us.
But grandchildren, a nephew and great grandchildren still visit.
Dorothy’s first job aged 14 was in Newark, making embroidery at Bainbridge’s, forcing a daily bike ride from Claypole at 8.15am.
She then joined Woolworth’s on the till in Grantham market when she was 17.
She said: “I then ran Grantham Post Office with my sister, taking the letters out and sorting them.”
She later managed a fruit and veg store near London Road, before ending her career at Barfords as a cook and pastrymaker.
When she was 18 years old, she met husband Frederick whilst he played football on a pitch where Sainsbury’s stands today.
After nine years, they got married at Grantham Registry Office.
The couple lived in Great Gonerby before Fred died of cancer aged 66, though Dorothy still lived there until 2015.
Nursing home manager Nicky Bullimore said Dorothy now enjoys reading, watching old movies, having her hair done and being pampered.
Wednesday saw a party with a buffet tea, singing, dancing and music.
Kings Court Nursing Home has more birthday parties next spring, for two other residents turning 102 and 103 years old.