September 1st every year sees eighty-five year-old Ada Trubshaw from Peckham begin a ritual she’s carried out now for the past sixty years, and she shows no sign of flagging and just might still be doing it in another sixty.

She told reporters: ‘Since I wed my Bert it’s always been the same, September 1st every year come ‘ell or ‘igh water. Even once when I was flat on me back ‘aving one of the kids I suddenly twigged the date, got a shift on and quickly dropped the sprog who turned out to be our Nigel as it ‘appens. I just left him with the midwife to clean ‘im up and that as I couldn’t miss me deadline. Course I seen ‘im later.’

‘But I just does this every year the exact same as my old Mum always done when I was a little girl. Cos my Dad, bless ‘im, would’ve cut up proper rusty if she’d ever been late.’

As octogenarian Ada busies herself at the stove, a smiling Bert nods and looks on approvingly. ‘She’s a proper diamond, my gel. But one thing what ‘as to be perfect with Christmas lunch is the sprouts.’