Could Dorothy Flowers be our oldest resident at 105?

Dorothy Flowers
Dorothy Flowers

A Harrogate lady is celebrating her 105th birthday this week, an impressive milestone which family members have attributed to her “sheer determination and strength of character”.

Dorothy Irene Flowers was born at the New Inn in Headingley, where she lived with her parents and brother until she began working life. Mrs Flowers attended Leeds Girls Modern School, and has worked in accounting in all of her jobs. For many years she was employed by the Tote, and visited most of the racecourses in the country, but never saw a race.

Mrs Flowers met her husband Len and they lived in London during the Second World War. They lived in New Malden in Surrey for some years, then retired to Paignton in Torbay.

Mrs Flowers’s niece Judith Barrett, 79, said: “She has always loved Harrogate and the Yorkshire Dales, so when she was 80 she returned to her roots in Yorkshire to be near family.

“She lived in her own home until the age of 104. My aunt is Yorkshire born and bred, and was keen to move to Harrogate 25 years ago. She liked to go for a run in the Dales.

“She’s certainly been the boss of the family, and a real matriarch. I think it’s through sheer determination that she’s reached this age, and everyone who knows her knows that she is a strong character.

“My aunt has always tried her hand at anything, and her hobbies over the years include dressmaking and glass engraving. She’s travelled all over, including Australia and New Zealand, and has had a happy life and a happy marriage.

“She has always enjoyed good food, good wine, and the occasional brandy. She doesn’t know what cholesterol is and always says to have a little of what you fancy in moderation. Unsurprisingly, my aunt is the oldest member of our family. I would be interested to know if she is the oldest person in the Harrogate district. If not, it is an impressive age to reach. We are delighted to be celebrating it."

Mrs Flowers will enjoy a special birthday party with four generations of her family at Southlands nursing home where she currently resides. The Mayor of Harrogate, Coun Nick Brown, will also be in attendance for the big occasion.

Mrs Flowers is looking forward to receiving another card from the Queen. Do you have a milestone birthday coming up in your family, or know a friend who does? Let us know! Email:, or call 01423 707505.