Shoreham dancer reaches 100th birthday with incredible spring in her step
A Shoreham centenarian has danced her way into triple figures and given further proof age is just a number.
Dinkie Flowers passed the incredible milestone on Friday and celebrated by performing 100 kicks for the Captain Tom 100 fundraising drive.
A former professional ice skater, Dinkie has been dancing since she was three years old, still delivers regular fitness classes from her home and exercises six times a week.
Her commitment to keeping moving is one of the secrets behind her enduring energy levels.
“It’s my life, I’ve just always been like this,” said Dinkie, who has one daughter and four grandchildren.
“I am always in the studio doing splits, bar work and dancing. Everybody should dance and do exercise – it’s not now you’ve got to worry about, it’s when you start to get older that you want to be able to walk properly.
“It upsets me to see people sitting on their bottoms, or young people leaning on their shopping trolleys like zimmer frames.”
As well as the 100 kicks for Captain Sir Tom Moore which Dinkie admitted ‘knocked her out a bit’, she enjoyed a small celebration with her daughter, sister-in-law and a few friends.
Her birthday party may have been muted slightly by Covid-19 restrictions, but Dinkie’s life has been full of fanfare.
As an international ice skater, she danced for the Iraqi royal family in the 1950s when the British Embassy in Baghdad used an ice rink to explain the concept of refrigeration to the locals.
A diplomatic incident almost ensued, however, when the royal family bought the ice rink and mistakenly believed they were buying Dinkie at the same time.
She also danced for the British royal family at the Queen’s Ice Club in 1952, drawing a letter of thanks from the Duke of Edinburgh.
Forty-eight years later she was receiving a letter from the Queen herself.
Never far from the limelight, Dinkie competed on the BBC’s The Greatest Dancer last year and has recently been covered by media heavyweights including the BBC, Heart Radio and the Worthing Herald.
She said she would not have it any other way.
“I love the media attention,” Dinkie said.
“The more attention I can get the better. I’ve always loved standing out and that’s not a bad thing – I’m a professional.
“I’ve always loved doing all of those things. I couldn’t do too many.”
Still full of beans at 100, Dinkie shows no signs of slowing down.