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Childhood best friends who lost touch reunited 60 years later

“It’s lovely for the two ladies to reunite and it just shows, you never know when you’ll bump into an old friend again.”

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(L-R) Janet Henderson and Irene Gresty. (Bield via SWNS)

By Sarah Ward via SWNS

Childhood best friends who lost touch were reunited 60 years later in a nursing home.

Irene Gresty and Janet Henderson, both 80, grew up in Linlithgow, West Lothian, Scotland and were "joined at the hip" as children.

The girls were neighbors in the 1940s but lost touch when they got married.

Irene moved away with her husband who was in the Navy and lived abroad including in Singapore.

But she wanted to retire closer to home and had been living for three years very close to Janet without knowing it.

They met at a technology event by nursing home group Bield, and Irene said her heart skipped a beat when she saw her pal.

Irene said: “I moved back six years ago as my family still live here.

"I loved the area growing up so wanted to settle down to enjoy retirement.

“From speaking to people I’d known in the past, I found out Janet still lived in the area but our paths hadn’t crossed.

Irene Gresty (right at front) outside her childhood home. (Bield via SWNS)

“We were joined at the hip growing up as we were neighbors and also went to school together, we have many fond memories of sticking up for each other and playing in the park.

"We sat down beside each other and she turned to me and said ‘is that you Irene?’ and I just laughed and said ‘yes Janet.’

"We knew immediately who each other were.

“She said her mind was made up that it was me, I’m very glad she said something as it the last time we seen each other was a long time ago.

“My heart really skipped a beat a little when we realized.

"I can’t believe my luck that it happened, I was delighted to have seen her again.”

The two women vowed to never let it go that long again without seeing each other and spent the full afternoon catching up.

Janet said: “People often move away from the area, and you lose contact, it’s the way life goes.

“We both got married and now have different surnames.

"I hadn’t thought anything of it when someone told me Irene had moved back to the area as I didn’t recognize the name – so when I saw her at the event it was pretty surreal.

“We exchanged numbers so I’m really looking forward to meeting up in the future, we have many years to catch up on.”

Tracey Howatt, Director of Customer Experience at Bield, said: “We often have friends reuniting after not seeing each other for a long period of time, but I don’t think we have ever had anything like this before.

“It’s lovely for the two ladies to reunite and it just shows, you never know when you’ll bump into an old friend again.”

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