December 22 2013 Latest news:
Friday, August 16, 2013
With a cheeky chuckle, Doris Darby joked that a daily dram of whiskey is the secret to her 100 years.
The smartly dressed great great grandmother, who began her working life in a false teeth factory, has lived in High Road, Gorleston for 69 years.
And as she celebrated her century on August 13, her family said she is still full of beans.
“She enjoys playing cards and watching her telly,” said daughter Mary Martin, 68.
And she sighed: “She loves all the soaps, Emmerdale, Coronation Street, Eastenders...”
Gorleston-born Mrs Darby met and fell in love with Charles Darby when they were both aged 13, but they lost touch and did not meet again until the second world war.
And the chance encounter came about after parts of Gorleston were evacuated, and Mrs Darby moved to stay with her brother Bill in Gloucester.
Mr Darby - a shipwright who later owned Darby’s Hard boat builders yard in Riverside Road - was repairing motorised torpedo boats when they were reunited, and they wed in Gloucester on June 7, 1941.
Their son Barry was born in 1943, with Mary 18 months later, and after a spell at grandma Darby’s they moved into the marital home in High Road - where Doris still lives today.
And they enjoyed family life for many years, with seven grandchildren, 16 great grandchildren and one great great grandchild.
Mr Darby sadly died on April 28, 1984, but her daughter said it could not change her happy-go-lucky character.
“Since then mum has had holidays all over the world as dad didn’t really like travelling,” she revealed.
Among her destinations are Canada, Tenerife and Germany.
And her most recent sunny sojourn was to Spain, aged 95.
“I love flying,” grinned Mrs Darby, from her armchair.
Mrs Darby was born in Lower Cliff Road and went to Stradbroke School, before working at a false teeth factory and then Johnson’s factory.
Asked what her secret to a long and happy life is, she replied: “My drop of whiskey - only a teaspoon full.
“And good living.”
She added she had only started to drink whiskey later in life, and her daughter said she is looked after well.
“She likes her independence,” explained Mrs Martin. “We see each other at least four times a week and speak on the phone.”
For her birthday Mrs Darby enjoyed a party at Filby Bridge restaurant with around 60 guests.
And she said it “went off really well”.