butchers, Eric Kemp's, and he'd always have plenty of bargains. I used to buy the cheapest cuts and make a good old stew and dumplings and things like that'.
'They were never ill either - not what I would call really ill - apart from the usual mumps and measles and things. (Margaret had trained as a nurse in the army before her first marriage so knew all about health care) ' My Tony was the only one who was ever ill. He had Perthes disease, which is a crumbling of the hip, and he had to wear leg irons for quite a while. But everyone used to laugh at him as he used to climb trees and walls and it never inhibited him at all - not one little bit.'
'I wasn't really strict with them, it was just that when I said 'No' they knew I meant 'No'. And if they wanted something badly enough then they had to work to earn it. I couldn't keep giving to them.'
'We had a telly, and this was the best part of it, you had to put 6d (2 p) in the slot to watch it. We used to save our tanners (sixpences) so they could watch children's hour. And if they were good they could put an extra one in for another programme. There wasn't

Margaret's seven children

much entertainment in the village. They just made their own fun really. They'd go swimming all day at Didlington bridge or swing on the tyre across the little river down Common Drove. They'd take a bottle of lemonade and some sandwiches and be out all day. They used to have such fun. In the winter they'd make a sledge and slide down in the snow.'
Margaret and Rex are rightly very proud of their children for they've all done very well. 'I always told my kids as long as they could read they could do anything and they've proved me

right. Two of my boys even went to Thetford Grammar. People said they didn't know where they got their brains from - but I said, "Why me, of course, who'd do think?" and she laughed. 'I also told them to give people love, affection and respect.'
Some of that love, affection and respect has been given back to her during her recent illness. 'I didn't know people cared so much about me. So many flowers - so many cards. And my daughter in laws, as well as my family have been marvellous'.
"It's only what you deserve, mum" said

Page 11