Centenarian Marjorie Louch has looked back over a good life, full of wonderful times, including working with Margaret Thatcher.
Marjorie was born in London on December 5, 1918, and celebrated her 100th birthday in Worthing today, at Windsor Rest Home, where she has lived just a few months.
She had a busy working life and in the 1970s, did a lot of work for Margaret Thatcher when she was MP for Finchley and later Prime Minister. Those days were very busy and happy times, with lots of socialising, Marjorie recalled.
“I lived near her and worked for her constituency office for many years,” said Marjorie.
“I used to go to her committee rooms to help out. She was lovely, and Denis, too. I knew her daughter Carol and her twin but he was a bit of a tearaway. He went missing in the desert.”
Marjorie has always had a great love for music and dancing. She will regale people with stories of the balls she attended.
“In those days, us ladies used to dress up in long dresses. The foxtrot was my favourite,” she said.
Marjorie was close to her mother, Milly McCarthy, and has always wanted to live to the same age as her, 101.
“I have had a good life. I have had some lovely times, lovely family,” she said.
She had a brother and a sister, and was particularly proud of her brother’s life as a musician.
“He was a brilliant pianist,” she told Worthing mayor Paul Baker during his visit on her birthday.
An intelligent and articulate lady, Marjorie enjoys company and has many close friends.
Luci Spears, owner of the home, in Lyndhurst Road, said: “She is lovely. We are so lucky to have her. She has blossomed since she has been here.”
Lyndhurst Infant School Choir also visited to sing Christmas songs for the residents and ended with a rendition of Happy Birthday for Marjorie.
Luci said: “They come every year. Marjorie loves children, even though she wasn’t able to have them, so we thought it would be nice to have the choir come on her birthday.”
Marjorie married twice and sadly both husbands died suddenly.
She moved to Durrington after her sister retired to Worthing and met her second husband Harry at a social club for the over-55s in Durrington, having been a widow for years.
She moved out of her flat in Goring in February 2010 after Harry died suddenly and has lived in several care homes since then.
Marjorie said she became blind overnight. Her brother had glaucoma and she was told she had water flooding into the back of her eye, causing damage that was irreversible.
“I scraped the car coming out of the garage one morning and I couldn’t work out why I couldn’t focus,” she said.
“It was a terrible shock. I loved driving.”
Marjorie enjoys her food and is partial to a chocolate or two and a tipple of sherry
Asked the secret to a long life, she said: “I don’t know, I’m sure.”