GREAT grandmother Joyce Taylor asked friends and family not to give her presents for her 85th birthday.
Joyce, of Purbook, wanted to use the occasion to raise money for charities instead.
More than 50 people went to a birthday party at her daughter’s house in Cosham and raised £420 for four causes close to her heart.
The money will go to children’s care group Naomi House, the Rowans Hospice, brain injury charity Headway and the Rocky Appeal, which helps pay for a Da Vinci robotic surgical centre at Queen Alexandra Hospital in Cosham.
Joyce said the best birthday present she could get was knowing that she had helped others.
She said: ‘What do you buy a lady of 85? Flowers?
‘Not a lot.
‘So I’d rather have the money go to the charities.
‘That’s me, and that’s what this country’s about – charity.’
She is no stranger to championing good causes.
Earlier this year she abseiled down the Spinnaker Tower to raise money for Rowans Hospice, following in the footsteps of 100-year-old Doris Long.
Joyce said that feat had earned £1,161, and counting, for the hospice.
She is keen to repeat the abseil next year and every year until she reached her 100th birthday.
She said: ‘I want to keep going every year.
‘I want to be just like Doris Long.’
The keen fundraiser said next year’s abseil will raise money for the Rocky Appeal.
She said: ‘I wanted to put it towards the machine because it help everyone doesn’t it?
‘It saves lots of operations, so it’s marvellous.’
Joyce said an active lifestyle has helped her stay fit and healthy.
She said: ‘Just keep on the move, don’t stop.
‘I’m always doing something here, there and everywhere.
‘You can’t sit down at home, and you can’t help how you were made.’
Joyce has four grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.
Daughter Val, said her mother is a source of inspiration to the whole family.
She said: ‘She’s a brilliant mum.
‘She’d do anything for me.
It is not the first fundraising birthday party her mum has organised.
She added: ‘We raised about 400 on her 80th birthday.
‘Last year was my husband’s 60th so she said no to another party.
‘I said we’ll wait until your 85th and we’ll have another charity bash.
‘She just enjoys it all and all her friends come.’