Skydiving great grandmother, 92, proves that age is but a number

Margaret Hudson, 91, sky dives to break stereotypes of ageing

Margaret Hudson, 91, sky dives to break stereotypes of ageing - Credit: Archant

92-year-old Margaret Hudson is redefining what it means to be 'elderly' by jumping from a plane - twice.

Mrs Hudson has taken the plunge twice for different causes and said she's up for a third time

Mrs Hudson has taken the plunge twice for different causes and said she's up for a third time - Credit: Archant

The great grandmother many times over has sky dived on two occasions and said she is willing to go for a third time.

She made the plunge for the first time 11 years ago as a thank you to the staff at Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital after recovering from breast cancer (and crediting the 'miracle drug' Femara).

She raised £1400 and loved the exhilaration of the first jump so much that she decided to go again at age 86. On the second dive she raised money for Age UK Norfolk's Grays Fair Court, where she lives as a popular and lively resident.

Mrs Hudson, from Costessey, isn't one to let her years define her and has a habit of doing unexpected things for her age.

Mrs Hudson has a habit of breaking age stereotypes

Mrs Hudson has a habit of breaking age stereotypes - Credit: Archant


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At 16 she joined a group of women to help construct airfields across East Anglia to help the war effort. Not only did she break age stereotypes, she broke gender norms. Mrs Hudson helped lay concrete, drove an excavator, helped dig ditches and laid drainpipes at Foulsham air base and at airfields at Swanton Morley and North Creake.

'We were some of the first girls to work on the aerodromes and I was the youngest.

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'They used to call me 'Baby Elephant' because I was so strong,' she said.

Now Mrs Hudson wants to become an Age UK Norfolk Telephone Befriender, someone who calls older people, like herself, to check in on them and have a friendly conversation.

'It would be so nice to do something to help older people,' she said.

Today marks Older People's Day in the UK, along with the UN International Day of Older Persons, which both aim to break the stereotypes of ageing and celebrate the achievements of elderly people.

David Wakefield, a volunteer worker with Age UK Norfolk, said there's no reason to let age hold you back.

'If you enjoy reasonable health, are mobile, and want to do more than just 'be retired', then there are many opportunities,' he said.

Take Philip Goldsmith, 91, who became the oldest person to sky dive at Beccles Airfield last Saturday. The older population of Norfolk is clearly proving that age is but a number, and Mrs Hudson is a prime example of that mantra.

She says her adventurous days aren't just a thing of the past and isn't slowing down anytime soon. Her mother lived to almost 102 and she plans to do the same.

'A psychic once told me that I would live to be 100, but I want to be at least the same age as my mother,' she said.

For anyone looking to take the plunge like Mrs Hudson and Mr Goldsmith, email fundraising@ageuknorfolk.org.uk. August 20, 2017 will be a group parachute day for Age UK Norfolk at Ellough Airfield, near Beccles.

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