Davina’s quick wit still strong at 100

Davina Sharp Wiseman.
Davina Sharp Wiseman.
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A popular widow will today celebrate her 100th birthday alongside friends and relatives.

The youngest of six children, sprightly Davina Sharp Wiseman has survived all her siblings and is still able to give relatives the runaround.

It is understood that quick-witted Davina “suspects something is afoot” after she overheard family members whispering about mysterious birthday plans.

Her 74-year-old niece Flora Hastie, of Craigmount, added: “She is very bright, with a quick wit.

“She is still fairly mobile and can move along the corridors using a walker quicker than we can.

“She doesn’t look anything like her age, has very good hearing and a quick wit and doesn’t miss a thing.

“She knows something is going on to do with her birthday and she doesn’t like it because she’s not in charge.

“Everybody thinks the world of her. She is very popular.”

Davina is due to celebrate her birthday with a cake and a get-together at Davidson House care home where she has lived for the past few months.

In her younger years, she used to enjoy playing golf and Scottish country dancing.

She also loved to drive but finally decided to give it up in 1983.

The 100-year-old has never smoked but used to enjoy a drink of wine with a meal, and the occasional sherry.

Asked to explain the secret of her long life, Davina said: “I don’t really know. My husband used to say ‘I think you will go on forever’ and now I am beginning to think that maybe he was right.”

Davina, who was born in Edina Place on June 16, 1915, left Edinburgh Ladies’ College, later Mary Erskine School, at 16 and then joined her father’s drapery as a bookkeeper.

By the time she was 19 she would go out on the road, taking the livery out to customers in Port Seton and Peebles.

She had wanted to go to art college but her family had different ideas, her father telling her: “No daughter of mine is going to a den of iniquity like that.”

When he died in 1937, the business continued for three more years before folding in 1940.

Davina married David Wiseman on April 23, 1941 and they had one son who sadly only survived a matter of weeks.

She opened up an exclusive ladies and children’s shop at Lochrin Buildings in Tollcross under her maiden name of Kerr, which she ran until 1960.

Then the couple moved down to Eastbourne on the south coast but, in 1983, they decided to return to Edinburgh.

They were among the first residents to move into sheltered housing at Oswald Road.

Davina also worked alongside her engineer husband at Hogg and Ross opposite the Royal Infirmary which created surgical instruments, braces and callipers.