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DorisYorkshire Cat Rescue
On 6th February, peacefully at Sutton Hall Care Home, Doris aged 100 years. Beloved wife of the late George, loving mother of Duncan, Alison, Angela and Adrian, dearly loved grandmother of Cameron, Ross, Bruce, Jamie, Camilla and Angus, great grandmother of Katie, Courtney, Callum and Aiden.
Doris Stewart an English Rose
Doris was born on January 8th, 1919 at Southfield Cottage, West Marton, back when David Lloyd George was Prime Minister and George V was King.
Doris grew up with four brothers and three sisters on the family farm near the village of Elslack, in what was then the Craven district of North Yorkshire. A small rural community Elslack is mentioned in the 1086 Domesday Book. When Doris was a girl, there was no electricity, no wireless radio, no telephone and no tractor on the farm, just a war horse that had survived WWI and who lived out his days pulling the trap that her father Robert used. She clearly remembers the navvies who camped nearby while they dug Elslack reservoir from 1925 to 1930. Each day her mother, Margaret, would cook the navvies a meal.
Doris was educated at the local school and was by all accounts a bright student. However, the opportunities for girls were not as they are now. When Doris left school, she started work in the Skipton office of Charlesworth, Wood and Brown, solicitors, before moving to Ambler haberdashers on Skipton, High Street, where she could earn slightly more and start saving.
Doris met her husband George Stewart at Kilnsey Show, near Grassington in 1937. They were married on December 14th, 1938 in the Parish Church at Skipton, Yorkshire. The following year would see the start of World War II. Like many young men George joined up in April of 1939, five months before Britain would declare war on Nazi Germany. He served in the Duke of Wellington’s West Riding Regiment and was de-mobilised in 1946. Doris raised the first two of their four children during the war, and though rationing was a hardship, she is a Yorkshire lass and knew how to make do and mend.
Doris and George started their married life at Elm Tree Cottage in Embsay, before moving to Skipton in 1953, the year of Queen Elizabeth's coronation, eventually retiring to Cross Hills in 1985. Doris and George were members of the Craven and District Motor Club – where they would help organize grass track races, trials, and scrambles for motorcycle enthusiasts. They also enjoyed taking part in the club’s treasure hunts.
Together Doris and George raised four children:
• Peter Duncan, born 1939 – now living in Florida, USA
• Margaret Alison, born 1943 – now living in Cheshire.
• Angela Christine, born 1946 – now living in Berkshire.
• Adrian George, born 1956 – now living in Oregon, USA.
Doris has always been a creative lady and has knit countless sweaters, scarves and hats over the years. As a mother she ensured that all her children could read by the time they were five years old and starting primary school. At home she taught all four how to cook, sew and keep a clean home. Doris loves the Yorkshire countryside she grew up in and she taught her children the names of all the trees and wild flowers, and edible berries and plants. She also taught them to recognize the songs of the wild birds and how to gauge the weather by watching the clouds.
Doris is a keen gardener and has a real knowledge of plants and flowers. She grew vegetables to help feed her growing family and her colourful gardens were often admired.
Doris enjoyed family summer holidays, which were taken either on the south coast or in the highlands of Scotland. On bank holidays the family would visit her relatives who farmed on the Lancashire coast at Cockerham and Over Kellet. Doris and George enjoyed driving through the Yorkshire Dales, and walking along the river Skirfare near the village of Litton where George was born and raised. Sadly George passed away in 1993.
Doris is the proud grandmother to; Cameron, Ross, Bruce, Jamie, Camilla, and Angus, and is great-grandmother to; Katie, Courtney, Callum and Aiden
In 1989 Doris and George celebrated their Golden Wedding anniversary with a family gathering at the Falcon Manor Hotel in Settle.
Doris spent her final years at Sutton Hall, Cross Hills, where she enjoyed the companionship of other locals and the care of Sutton Hall’s excellent staff. Her room contained many mementos of her full life. During that life she witnessed many changes, including 23 different Prime Ministers and 4 Monarchs. She saw the advent of radio, telephones, television, man landing on the moon, and the internet. Doris embraced the modern world, and indeed on her 80th birthday, she flew to New York on Concorde to visit her eldest son and his family.
Doris was always a lady of great determination and values her independence. When she was asked what her secret to a long life was, she said: "Growing old isn't an illness, you have just to keep on going through rough and smooth."