Winding back the clock for Doris, still a Norfolk girl at 102

102-year-old Doris Harris being shown photos at her former house in Spixworth. 

102-year-old Doris Harris being shown photos at her former house in Spixworth. - Credit: Shaheen Jahir

 A 102-year-old care home resident has been treated to a festive trip down memory lane.

Doris Harris was living independently in her own bungalow until June, when she moved to Wroxham's Heron Lodge nursing home because of the loneliness of the coronavirus lockdown.

Mrs Harris said she never more content than when talking about her life with fellow resident Lily Barnes, herself a centenarian.

Staff at Heron Lodge nursing home in Wroxham waving off Doris Harris

Staff at Heron Lodge nursing home in Wroxham waving off Doris Harris, 102, on a surprise journey to places that have been important in her life - Credit: Shaheen Jahir

So after her months of Covid-enforced confinement, staff at the Kingsley Healthcare-run home gave Mrs Harris an early Christmas present - a surprise visit to some important places from her past. 

The trip included a peek inside her previous home and a visit to the village church where she was married and her children were christened.


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Maebh McCormack, the home's manager, who went with Mrs Harris, said: “We started with Doris being waved off by the Heron Lodge staff for a short journey back to her most recent home, a bungalow at Linacre Avenue in Sprowston, across the road from her daughter Carol’s. A gathering of friends and neighbours greeted Doris much to her delight. She recognised and greeted them all individually.

Former neighbours waving to Doris Harris, 10, in Linacre Avenue, Sprowston

Former neighbours waving to Doris Harris, 10, in Linacre Avenue, Sprowston - Credit: Shaheen Jahir

“Doris picked up the Queen’s photo from her mantelpiece and explained that she had received this on her 100th birthday and treasured it greatly.

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“She then showed us a beautiful black and white photo of her parents Fredrick and Ethel. Frederick was not to be abbreviated, she told us with a smile. She admired her mum’s shoulder length black hair and remarked, ‘It was exactly like that when she died, a full head of black hair’.”

doris harris heron lodge

Susy Dean, senior support worker at Heron Lodge nursing home in Wroxham, with Doris Harris, 102, at St Peter’s Church in Spixworth, where she was married. - Credit: Shaheen Jahir

They also visited the Corbett Avenue shops which had been a huge part of Mrs Harris's life.

Mrs McCormack said: “We passed her small bungalow and she recalled her time spent there. Next on route was St Peter’s Church in Spixworth. On the way we passed the Longe Arms which Doris was familiar with.”

On the journey from Spixworth Mrs Harris pointed out the family home where she brought up her son, Graham, and daughter, Carol, and acknowledged her sister Elsie’s house.


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