From excelling at swimming to surviving bomb raids and working for the Met police – Norfolk’s new centenarian Doreen Webster has lived an eventful life.

Mrs Webster, who currently lives at Oaklands Care Home, in Scole near Diss, recently celebrated her 100th birthday where she was made to feel like a queen for the day.  

She has lived at the care home since 2013, after she joined her late husband, Ray, who had moved into the Oaklands the previous year. 

Diss Mercury: Doreen Webster celebrates 100th birthday

An only child, Mrs Webster was born in London on May 10, 1923. 

While at school she was very keen on sports and excelled at swimming. 

On leaving school she secured a job in a factory in the Finsbury Park area of London that supplied the military, a job she kept throughout the Second World War

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She lived with her mother not far from her place of work and recalled there were frequent bombing raids. 

In one they had a lucky escape when a German incendiary bomb hit the house. It took a large chunk out of the skirting board on the stairs but did not ignite.  

The area was also subject to attacks from German V1 rockets known as ‘doodlebugs. They were known for the sound of the engine cutting out followed by an explosion.  

Her mother would advise her to lie in the gutter on hearing this as this was the safest place. 

Diss Mercury: Doreen Webster celebrates 100th birthday

After the war, Mrs Webster started work as a telephonist for the Metropolitan Police at Grays Inn Road police station.  

It was there that she met her future husband, Raymond "Ray" Webster. He was a police constable stationed there.  

Mr Webster was born and bred a Norfolk man and joined the Royal Air Force (RAF) during the Second World War. On demob, his old job in Norfolk was no longer available so he joined the Metropolitan Police.  

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The couple married in 1950 and in 1954 they had a son Graeme, their only child.  

Mrs Webster remained a telephonist, now working for the Ministry of Defence (MoD), while her husband stayed in the police force and became a sergeant and an advanced driving instructor at the Met Police driving school in Hendon, north of London. 

In the early 1980s, the couple moved to Norfolk and lived in Roydon, near Diss.  

Both were active in the Diss branch of the RAF Association (RAFA) and made many friends there.  

Mrs Webster enjoyed trips to Diss, using the border hopper bus, where many local shop workers knew her and always had a kind word to say about her.  

Diss Mercury: Doreen Webster celebrates 100th birthday

After retirement, the couple enjoyed spending long holiday breaks during the winter months in the Canary Islands that gave them many fond memories together. 

In 2012, Mr Webster moved to Oaklands after developing dementia. He died in 2015 but Mrs Webster remained at the care facility which has been her home for the past decade. 

Staff at Oaklands, which is run by Kingsley Healthcare, joined together in order to put on a special celebration for Mrs Webster.

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As well as making her feel like the care home's queen for the day they also put on entertainment for everyone to enjoy.

Residents were treated to a performance by The Jay Singers choir. This was followed by a performance by local vocalist Mandy Chambers.

Mrs Webster also enjoyed a visit from her loved ones and there was a private family party for her, as well as a giant cake.

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