Nan retires after 68 years of styles, dyes and decorating for the Queen

Doreen with flowers given to her by one of her longest-serving customers

Doreen Woor has been cutting hair in Ipswich for 68 years - Credit: Doreen Woor

Hairdressing isn't what it used to be, according to an 83-year-old Ipswich nan who is putting down the scissors after nearly 70 years of snipping and styling. 

Doreen Woor, who owned a salon in Foxhall Road at the height of her hairdressing days, said she's been pushed into leaving the profession after breaking a wrist and a hip moving furniture taking down her Christmas decorations.

She started cutting hair properly when she was 15, but had wanted to be a hairdresser since she was about four years old.

It ran in the family, with an aunt working in the profession until she was 92.

Doreen Woor and Enid, one of her longest-serving hairdressing customers

Doreen with one of her longest-serving customers, Enid - Credit: Doreen Woor

She said: "Not to be big-headed but I was quite skilled. I was a pretty good hairdresser. 

"Today's hairdressing isn't like I do, I don't think it's as interesting. It's colour and blow-dry, but I loved the styles. The pin-curls and backcombing and finger waves. 

"I never really made money out of it, I did it because I loved it, but the prices I charged - I must have been mental."

Doreen Woor and her friends and customers at a garden party to celebrate VE Day

Garden parties with her customers were an annual event for Doreen and her family - Credit: Doreen Woor

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But Doreen wasn't in it for the money - for her the thanks came in the family feeling that she and her customers had. 

"My customers became friends. Some of them came to my wedding and I hosted annual garden parties and pub meals with them. 

"At one point I had more than 80 regular customers and we'd get the whole lot of us in my garden, singing songs - it was wonderful. 

"I had my shop, Doreen's Hairstylists, for 30 years. 

"I was most excited in 1977 when I dressed it all up for the Queen's Jubilee and the Queen stopped outside to have a look. I was proud of that, especially to get a wave from the Duke of Edinburgh." 

Family is important for Doreen, who speaks highly of her daughter and son ("I don't know what I'd do without them"), her three grandchildren, four great-grandchildren and husband of 40 years, Ivan, who she describes as her "rock".

Doreen and her husband Ivan live in Ipswich

Doreen says her husband, Ivan, has been her rock for 40 years - Credit: Doreen Woor

When she broke her wrist and hip just after Christmas, they rallied around and although she's frustrated with her lack of mobility, she's determined to recover and "get on with life". 

"I don't know what's next. I'll really miss the hairdressing, I've never ever tired of it. 

"I've kept one chair and a hairdryer and some lotions, but I only really have two friends I'd consider working with, so I don't know if I'll start again. 

"But I'm happier than a lot of other people and it's given me a lovely life."