Barnoldswick great-grandmother celebrates her 100th birthday

Annie Shorrock
Annie Shorrock

A WELL-KNOWN and popular great-grandmother has celebrated her 100th birthday with a party for friends and family.

Annie Shorrock, nee Bolland, was born in Airton in 1911 and brought up on her family’s farm, attending Airton Primary School and enjoying country life.

Tragically, when she was just six years old Annie’s mother died from swine flu, in the same week as the epidemic also took two of her aunts. Four years later, her father also died and the young children came to live with their grandmother in Barnoldswick.

Annie said it was a big upheaval in their lives. “To move from living on a farm and going to a country school, to Rainhall Road school was a massive change that took a lot of getting used to.”

But the town made quite an impression on Annie and she has never wanted to leave.

After school, she worked at George Smith’s Fruit and Veg shop. Having been friends for a while, Annie married milkman Peter Shorrock in 1937. Their son David followed soon after, and daughter Margaret in 1947.

After marrying, the couple ran Gisburn Road Dairy for 30 years before retiring together.

Sadly, Peter passed away soon after they retired in 1972, when the couple had just moved to Annie’s current home on Gisburn Road. She enjoys spending time with her family , which includes grandchildren Blake, James, Anna, Sarah and Mark, and great-grandchildren Corey, Harvey, Charlie, Isabella and Morwenna. Annie is also legendary in the town for her cakes and pastries.

Annie’s popularity was shown with the delivery of almost 300 birthday cards and dozens of bunches of flowers. Nearly 200 people visited her to wish her a happy birthday at a party held at daughter Margaret’s house.

She even received congratulations from the Queen, but said her most treasured messages had come from her family.

Annie said there is no secret remedy for her long life, but that she has just never thought about her age.

“I have just done as I have always done and never thought about how old I actually am,” she said. “I’ve never thought ‘I can’t do this’ or ‘I shouldn’t do that’.”

Writing in St Andrew’s Church’s parish magazine, family friend Joan Clark said: “Annie is such a loving, kind and wonderful person. She is always so interested in other people, so caring and we all love to talk to her. We are certain she had a wonderful celebration on the day and send our very best wishes and much love for many happy returns of the day.”