A DAILY glass of sweet wine and dab of £1-a-pot moisturiser is New Milton resident Irene Taylor’s secret to looking younger than her years as she celebrated her 107th birthday.
Ask Irene how she managed to achieve the remarkable milestone and she says with a cheeky grin: “I don’t know – one minute I was a young girl, now I’m an old girl!”
She says her youthful looks are down to “always used Astral moisturiser.”
The 107-year-old also credits Brussel sprouts for keeping her still youthful at well over a century old.
She said: “I absolutely love sprouts. You’ve got to have your greens, they’re very important! I also have a glass of sweet wine a day and use moisturiser.”
Until only two months ago Irene was managing to get around unaided in her ground-floor.
But due to a fall she now has to use a walking frame. She adds quickly: “I’m very independent. I like to do things for myself.
“My carers from Enthuse Care in New Milton love coming to see me because they always find me awake ready for a chat and a good laugh. We girls like to have a laugh!”
Until six months ago Irene was a regular at a carpet bowling event at the New Milton Community Centre. But sadly is unable to play anymore after her fall.
Irene, who has two daughters, Valerie Baker and Barbara Taylor, celebrated her birthday by going out to her favourite pub The Ferryman in Lymington for lunch.
She said: “I love going out and about. I’ll either have fish and chips, or roast pork. I love crackling!”
On Sunday, staff there made a big fuss of Irene giving her a free glass of her favourite sweet wine and a bouquet of flowers and served her crackling alongside her fish and chips.
The next day Barbara, who comes down once a month from Croydon, South London, to see her mum, hosted a family party complete with birthday cake.
Irene, who has three grandsons plus five great-grandchildren, used to work selling batteries for cars.
At one time she was the president of the Bromley Chamber of Commerce in Kent where she was living.
Irene said: “I was one of very few women working in the car business. There used to be seminars and I was the only woman there. The men didn’t like the fact a woman was doing their job. I told them what for!”
After moving to New Milton she worked for the Heart Foundation raising a lot of money for the charity during her time with them.
Her daughter Valerie described her as “miraculous for her age”.