Great grandmother who was still driving at 94 clocks up her 100th birthday

Winnie Elvin celebrates her 100th birthday. Picture: David Hannant

Winnie Elvin celebrates her 100th birthday. Picture: David Hannant - Credit: Archant

A great grandmother who continued to enjoy driving until she was 94 has celebrated her 100th birthday.

Winifred 'Winnie' Elvin, who lives at Badgers Wood Care Home in Drayton, celebrated the big occasion surrounded by family and friends at the Cock Inn.

Mrs Elvin was born in Essex but lived the majority of her life in West Croft in Hethersett.

She moved to the village after leaving school, when her father took on the role of signal master at Hethersett Station.

She settled in the village where her and husband Walter – who died in 1989 – raised a family together. The pair had one son, Brian, now 79, who was named after her father.

Mrs Elvin said: 'I never thought I would reach 100 and I wasn't expecting a party. I had no idea the family were planning it – I thought we were just going for a drink – so it was a lovely surprise.'

Before her retirement, she worked in nurseries and as a shop assistant on St Stephens Street in Norwich.

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She also spent around five years as an office worker for Colman's, looking after wages and holiday scheduling.

She said: 'It's terrible that Colman's soon won't be in Norwich any more after being here for so many years.'

After retiring from Colman's when she was 65, she went on to have a similar role at the University of East Anglia.

She moved to Badgers Wood in her late 90s, after a cut to her leg resulted her health deteriorating.

She said: 'I was actually told by doctors that I would never be able to walk again, however, I have proved them wrong.'

Mrs Elvin also said she held her full driving licence until the age of 94 and used to enjoy giving lifts to her friends.

She said: 'I don't think there is a real secret to living a long life – just look after yourself, live well and that's all I can really say about it.'

She has one son, two grandchildren, Debbie, 56, and Paul, 50, and five great grandchildren – Laura, Robert, James, Ruby and Charlie.