Singing is keeping Otley woman so young

Wharfedale Observer: Otley Courthouse Community Choir member Elizabeth Hodgson (front row, third from right) celebrating her 80th birthday. The choir's oldest member, 89-year-old Derek Naylor, is second from left at the back Otley Courthouse Community Choir member Elizabeth Hodgson (front row, third from right) celebrating her 80th birthday. The choir's oldest member, 89-year-old Derek Naylor, is second from left at the back

A choir member in Otley is still aiming for the high notes after reaching her 80th birthday.

Elizabeth Hodgson celebrated her birthday with a tea party attended by family and friends, including other members of the Otley Courthouse Community Choir.

Great grandmother Mrs Hodgson – better known as Betty – joined the group, which is led by Dave Stewart, when it began five years ago. She said: “I saw the announcement in the paper and phoned to find out about it.

“I have thoroughly enjoyed it ever since. It gives me a great lift and keeps me young.

“Singing lifts your soul. Dave is brilliant, I really admire his musical talent and the way he treats everyone – his motto is ‘everyone can sing’,"

Mrs Hodgson is not the most senior member of the choir, though, as that honour goes to 89- year-old Derek Naylor.

He said: “I enjoy the companionship of the choir, the mutual enjoyment of singing and the lovely sound we make. It keeps me going.”

The group meets at the Courthouse from 1.30pm to 3.30pm on Tuesdays during school term-times. New members are always welcome and there are no auditions and no requirement to read music.

To find out more, call (01943) 461971, visit singout.me.uk or e-mail info@singout.me.uk.

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