One of Britain’s oldest cleaners has returned to work, two months after breaking her hip in a nasty fall.
Doctors last week gave 96-year-old Marjorie Rose the green light to go back to work at the Kent shopping centre where she has been cleaning for more than 30 years.
She tripped and fell on her way into work in December, putting her out of action.
But Marjorie, who has 21 great-grandchildren, made her long-awaited return to The Mall in Maidstone, armed – as ever – with her feather duster.
She said: “It’s been lovely, everybody has been coming up to me saying it’s nice to see me back.
“I’ve got my duster with me, I’m still working well. There’s almost too many people to say hello to, I try holding my head down but they see me coming!”
Marge works at the shopping centre five days per week, and she’s showing no sign of slowing down.
Her grandson, David Gregory, said: “She used to get up at 4am and make sandwiches, then head to her cleaning job. She still walks to work every day.
“When I was 16 she beat me at the 100 metres. She must have been in her 70s then, and I was playing football three times a week.”
Last year Marge, who some shoppers prefer to call nan, had a cataract operation and returned to work after a week as she couldn’t bear to be away.
Mr Gregory, from Strood, said: “So many people know her around the town, she loves it there and it keeps her active.
“You’d think she’d be knackered but she isn’t, it’s amazing and I think people need to know about her.”
Marge has worked at the shopping centre for more than 30 years and is known for her wicked sense of humour.
Asked about the secret to her longevity in 2017, she said: “I don’t smoke and I don’t drink. I advise other people not to drink.”
Marge has worked at The Mall in Maidstone, Kent, since 1985 – after her husband Bill died.
She was born in Cornwall on August 15, 1923, when Stanley Baldwin was Prime Minister.
Marge eventually moved to Kent with Bill and they had five children.
During the Second World War she worked as a fruit picker, sending healthy treats to the Army, and also spent 40 years working for Alan Firmin picking fruit and seeds.
Bill sadly died from Hodgkin’s lymphoma aged just 58, and Marge took up her new cleaning job.
Asked the secret to her long life, the nonagenarian replied: “I don’t smoke and I don’t drink, I advise other people not to drink.”
At work, Marge enjoys meeting people and stopping for a chat, and says her wages help towards paying the bills.
When Marge turned 94 Suzie Brindle, marketing manager at The Mall, said: “Marge is a fantastic member of the team and never fails to amaze us with her zest for life.”
Locals are even suggesting the chirpy cleaner should be handed an MBE for her long service to the town.
Christine Howard said: “This wonderful lady should get a MBE for all her hard work. God bless you darling, happy birthday.”
Robbie Smith added: “Happy birthday Marge. Come on guys, this lady deserves to have a MBE – let’s start the campaign.”