WWII Spitfire engineer who lived in Warwick for 50 years will celebrate his 102nd birthday on Coronation day
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A man who lived in Warwick for more than 50 years and worked on Spitfires during World War Two will celebrate his 102nd birthday this weekend.
Archibald Saunders, who is also known as Archie, will turn 102 on May 6, which is also the day of the coronation of King Charles III.
The Coronation of King Charles will also mark the fifth monarch that has reigned during Archie’s lifetime.
On behalf of the family, Melissa Saunders, Archie's granddaughter, said: “Wishing our amazing father, grandfather and great-grandfather happy 102nd birthday with love from all the family.
“Grandad will be joining fellow residents of Tiddington Court to watch the coronation with a special lunch.
"Then various members of the Saunders family will be joining him for afternoon tea and across the bank holiday weekend.
“Sadly, we lost my grandma, Nancy Saunders, who had clothes shops in the Market Square, then Brook Street, Warwick, in January this year.
"They’d been married for 79 years. Grandad has planted a rose bush at Tiddington Court in her memory and she is much missed.”
Originally from Malvern, Archie moved to Birmingham at the start of World War Two and met Nancy, who would become his wife, when they both worked at the spitfire factory at Castle Bromwich.
Archie and Nancy married in 1943 in Erdington and had two sons.
Archie also served with the the Corps of the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers (REME) in India and Burma where he was made a sergeant.
After the war, he returned to family life in Birmingham, brought up two sons Robert and John, and had various jobs including work in testing for Morris and Lucas.
The family had two shops in Birmingham before moving to Warwick in 1960 where they lived above the shop in the Market Square and later Coventry Road and the Woodloes.
They also ran the women’s clothing shop, Ann Saunders, in Brook Street.
Archie and Nancy remained in Warwick until 2017 when they moved to Tiddington Court near Stratford.
They have six grandchildren and six great grandchildren.
Nancy died in January 2023.