Is 106-year-old Marjorie the oldest person in Morecambe?

Marjorie Greenfield stares at a sepia photograph of herself taken more than 100 years ago and her memory is as clear as day.

By Louise Bryning
Wednesday, 23rd February 2022, 9:18 am

“Look at me wearing that bow. Mother always wanted a girl but I turned out to be a tomboy!” says the woman who, at 106, is thought to be the oldest person in the Morecambe area.

Marjorie was born in 1915 – the same year as Frank Sinatra and Edith Piaf – and a year into World War One in which she lost her father, killed in action in the Middle East.

Her parents, William and Gertrude, had spent four years in Canada but in 1914 returned to Bolton, where Marjorie was born.

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Marjorie Greenfield is 106 years old and may be the oldest person in Morecambe. Photo: Daniel Martino

She had an older brother, Fred, also pictured in the precious photograph, along with their mother, Gertrude, and Grandma Norcliffe.

Being just a toddler, Marjorie remembers nothing of the Great War. Her memories of World War Two are much more vivid.

“The German planes used to fly over Bolton, following the river Croal on bombing raids. We were told to use the air raid shelters but we came out of our houses to look at them. It was a stupid thing to do really. We were frightened but curious.”

Marjorie was 24 when war broke out. After leaving school, she worked at Tootals Spinning, Weaving and Manufacturing Mill and learnt dressmaking and pattern draughting at their sewing school in Manchester.

Marjorie's birthday card from the Queen.

Hers was a reserved occupation during the war so she helped produce barrage balloon cloth and khaki uniform material.

Marjorie married in 1946 and her son David was born two years later. Her marriage ended in 1956 so she returned to work in the textile industry, becoming supervisor of the sewing room in a garment producing company where she taught trainees.

Marjorie moved to Morecambe in 1976 when she retired and became an active member of the community, attending Sefton Road United Reformed Church, joining the choir and ladies groups, and a local entertainment group giving concerts to care homes and day centres.

Having been very sporty during her life, enjoying tennis, cycling and swimming, teetotaller Marjorie kept fit enough to live in her own home until she was 97. She even went on a cruise to mark her 101st birthday.

Marjorie as a little girl, pictured with her older brother Fred, their mother Gertrude and Grandma Norcliffe.

Following a major hip and leg operation 10 years ago, she moved to Springfield Retirement Home.

“It’s lovely here,” Marjorie says. “They spoil me like mad but I don’t let on.”

“We call her our queen,” says Springfield’s registered manager, Jackie Harrison.

And since turning 100, Marjorie now has quite a collection of cards from the real Queen and will be expecting another on June 12 when she celebrates her 107th birthday.

Here’s some of the news that was hitting the headlines in 1915:

*German Zeppelin bombs struck the UK for the first time

*The Women’s Institute was established in Britain

*Charlie Chaplin’s film The Tramp was released

*The British polar expedition ship Endurance sank

*Albert Einstein published his Theory of Relativity