Worcester woman spills the beans on how to live to 101

Worcester News: THE GOOD LIFE: Margaret Probert says not drinking ‘very much’ has helped her live so long. THE GOOD LIFE: Margaret Probert says not drinking ‘very much’ has helped her live so long.

A WOMAN who has lived through two world wars, under the reigns of four monarchs and the leadership of 19 prime ministers has celebrated her 101st birthday.

Margaret Probert, of Froxmere Close, Crowle, Worcester, marked her second year in three figures yesterday.

She was born almost two years before the Great War began, when Herbert Henry Asquith, a Liberal, was in charge of the country.

A horse and trap was the main method of transport, with pushbikes being hired for six pence, two-and-a-half pence in today’s money, an hour.

Her fondest memories go back to the earliest days of broadcasting. A brother was an engineer and able to build radios, enabling his siblings the chance to listen to the first years of the wireless.

Mrs Probert says she was also lucky as a child as her father was a railway worker and the family received free or reduced travel.

She grew up in Kingston-upon-Hull, where she was one of nine children, before leaving in her 20s to marry her husband, Jack, in Birmingham.

Margaret, who is still “fighting fit” worked for 14 years at the Cadbury factory in Bournville, Birmingham, before the couple retired to Crowle in 1971, where her husband died two years later.

The couple had two daughters, Diane and Pamela, and Mrs Probert now has six grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren.

She says she has no real secret to her longevity, although she adds she has never smoked, drinks very little and that “sheer luck” has played its part.

Asked about the biggest change she’s seen in her life, she pointed towards the “benefits culture”.

“The way people live and the way people depend on benefits,” she said.

“That’s the worst”.

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