A 105-year-old woman – who says long life is down to ‘not sitting idle’ – still lives in the home she was born in.
Elsie Allcock was born at the two-bed terrace house in Huthwaite, Nottinghamshire in 1918, at the end of World War I, and has never left.
She and her late husband bought the property for £250 in 1957 and she now shares her home with son Raymond.
The pair have no internet connection or mobile phones and Elsie always has a duster in her pocket, believing her longevity is down to ‘not sitting idle’.
Raymond, a divorced dad of four, moved in 30 years ago to help care for his dad Mark when he became ill.
The 76-year-old said: ‘She’s very independent. She says ‘I don’t know what all the fuss is about’.
‘Until last year she was knitting all the time but she’s got arthritis in her hands.’
He added that his mum also struggles with her hearing and has a bad shoulder, but is otherwise ‘perfect’.
Elsie has six grandchildren and more than 30 grandchildren and great-grandchildren, with many coming to visit her on Sundays.
Raymond added: ‘Our family treat her like a queen.’
Elsie was the youngest of five children and after losing her mum when she was just 14, decided to stay home and look after her elderly father.
She helped clean her neighbours’ homes for ‘pocket money’ but has never had a regular job, instead, she’s focused on looking after her family and her home.
She was also an enthusiastic domino player and picked up a number of awards, which she proudly displays at home.
One of her sisters sadly died at the age of just 20, and she lost her husband when he was 78.
Elsie remembers seeing Queen Mary (later the Queen Mother) as a child and also watched the Queen’s Coronation.
Unsurprisingly, Elsie has seen a lot of changes in Huthwaite over the 105 years she’s lived there.
She remembers there once being 30 shops and 11 pubs in the main street but says there are now just two shops and two pubs.
Elsie added: ‘We used to have a billiard hall and a miners’ welfare but they pulled it down and built houses on them.
‘They knocked everything down and built houses on it.’
Both Elsie and Raymond miss the communal gardens at the end of their street which were turned into a car park.
Raymond, who worked as a bricklayer before retiring, said there was now sadly little for old people in the area to do.
But the pair keep busy building around 25 jigsaws a year and enjoy tending to their pot plants in the back garden.
Raymond, meanwhile, often gets up at 5am to go fishing and brings Elsie a cup of tea before leaving.
He said if his mum had a message for the younger generation it would be ‘don’t sit on your backside and go to work’.
The family held a party for Elsie’s 105th birthday on June 28 with 50 guests and she received a card from King Charles.
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