Hall party to mark Dorothy’s milestone

Dorothy McBryde's 100th birthday celebrations at the weekend included a tea party in Morpeth Town Hall.
Dorothy McBryde's 100th birthday celebrations at the weekend included a tea party in Morpeth Town Hall.

A former Mayor of Castle Morpeth went along to a familiar venue as part of her 100th birthday celebrations.

Following a family lunch on Saturday, the day Dorothy McBryde became a centenarian, about 70 people attended a tea party in Morpeth Town Hall on Sunday.

A number of friends, including ex-councillors and two other former Castle Morpeth Mayors, and current Mayor of Morpeth Alison Byard joined family members at the event.

The Thorp Avenue resident got involved in local efforts to prevent any development taking place at Tommy’s Field and she was then asked to be a councillor.

She was elected to Morpeth Borough Council in 1972 and then the Castle Morpeth authority – which was wound up when the Northumberland unitary council came into effect in April 2009 – in 1974.

Mrs McBryde served until 1987 and was Mayor in 1985-86. One of the highlights during this 12-month period was Princess Anne officially opening the borough council offices in the Kylins.

“I very much enjoyed seeing so many friends and family members at the weekend and I’m grateful for all their cards and messages and the well wishes of people in Morpeth who know me,” she said.

Born Dorothy Hunter, she was from a farming family and lived in the Hartburn and Ulgham areas. In 1943, she married Marshall McBryde in St John’s Church, Longhirst.

They lived on a farm at Pegswood Moor. Marshall died in 1965 and a year later, Mrs McBryde moved to Thorp Avenue. She then moved to her current address in the same street in the early 1970s.

Other immediate family include daughter Sheila Hulbert, son William (who died six years ago), three grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

She is still active with the Morpeth Cancer Research UK Fund-raising Committee, she got involved after the death of her husband, and local U3A groups and enjoys looking after her garden.

She was a founder member of the former Business and Professional Women Morpeth group and ran a luncheon club for Morpeth Age Concern at St James’ Community Centre.

Mrs McBryde said: “If you are able to do so, you have to keep involved with things to feel part of the community.”