Locksmith presents Hindley Green resident with key for 102nd birthday

Leigh Journal: Locksmith James Palmer presents Emma Swift with a key to commemorate her 102nd birthday Locksmith James Palmer presents Emma Swift with a key to commemorate her 102nd birthday

A LOCKSMITH has presented an elderly Hindley Green resident with a key for her 102nd birthday.

James Palmer, aged 26, was called to rescue Emma Swift when the key to her front door snapped in the lock.

When he was told that Mrs Swift would be turning 102 on December 25, he thought of an alternative payment for his services.

He said: “She had been telling me about her life and working in the mills and I just couldn’t charge her for the key. So I said to her, if she told me her secret to long life that would be my payment for the new key.

“She said her secret was having a drop of whisky every evening. She is as bright as a button for 102 and very independent.”

Mrs Swift has lived in Hindley Green since she was young and worked in mills across the area. In the Second World War she worked as a conductor on a bus because it was either that or a munitions factory.

Joyce Roberts, who has known Emma since she was young, said: “Her eyes aren’t very good and she is a little deaf but she still has her wits about her on a good day. I think James was surprised how assertive and lucid she was. I doubt he has ever met anyone like Emma before.”

James, who lives just round the corner from Mrs Swift on Atherton Road, presented her with a special ceremonial key to commemorate the landmark birthday.

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