Stamford’s world record breaker Dorrie Richards dies

Dorrie Richards
Dorrie Richards
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Stamford’s oldest resident who earned a place in the Guinness Book of World Records as one the world’s oldest siblings, has died.

Dorrie Richards, who was a resident at Whitefriars Residential Care Home in St George’s Avenue, Stamford, died of a stroke on Monday just four weeks short of her 110th birthday.

At the time of her death she was the 20th oldest person in the UK.

Dorrie and her sister Marjorie Ruddle were officially the oldest pair of siblings in the world with a combined age of 213 years, three months and 27 days when Marjorie passed away age 105 on Boxing Day last year at the Park House Nursing Home, in Peterborough.

The sisters came together at a family celebration in June 2012 at a family gathering to mark being recognised as Guinness World Record holders. It was the last time the pair saw each other before Marjorie’s death.

Philip said his mother could not understand what all the fuss was about being a world record holder. He said she never sought the limelight but accepted it with her characteristic wicked sense of humour.

Dorrie saw remarkable changes during her life. She was born on December 15, 1903, just two days before the Wright Brothers made man’s first powered flight.

Dorrie’s son Philip, 75, who lives in Lonsdale Road, Stamford, said: “It is very sad and the end of an era but didn’t she do well.”

Dorrie grew up in Northampton and on October 29, 1927, married Stanley Richards. They moved to Stamford in April 1941, with their two young sons Graham and Philip, and their third son Martin was born in the town in 1943.

Stanley took over an opticians business in St Mary’s Street, Stamford, where he remained until his death at the age of 58 in 1961.

In the last years of her life Dorrie took part in a medical study carried out by Boston University Medical Centre, in the US. The university carried out blood tests, memory tests and interviewed her over the phone as part of their study of centenarians.

In 2002 Whitefriars care home became Dorrie’s home.

Philip said: “You could not have asked for more from the people at Whitefriars. They have all been absolutely exceptional.

“They were all emotionally attached to her because she had been there longer than most of the carers and she was part of the furniture.”

Dorrie’s funeral will take place on December 3 at 1.30pm at St Mary’s Church in Bainton.