At The Lawn, the Alton-based residential care home run by charity Friends of the Elderly, resident Betty Marlow had a lovely day celebrating her landmark 100th birthday. To mark this landmark day, Betty was visited by her son, daughter and their partners, who took her out for a special ham, egg and chips birthday lunch; but the festivities didn’t stop there. After lunch, the party continued back at The Lawn in the beautiful gardens with birthday cake and Betty’s favourite tipple, a glass of sherry.
The Lawn Care Home Team pulled out all the stops to make sure Betty had a wonderful day, with gifts and cards and a congratulatory millennium birthday card from Her Majesty The Queen, the Royal Patron of the charity.
Betty, who has been a resident at The Lawn for a year, grew up in Bristol and, as a young girl, loved writing stories.
Betty’s son, Peter, said:
“Mum told me she didn’t really enjoy school but liked writing stories. So she always made bedtime stories up for my sister and me, and with 5 grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren, it’s a lifetime skill that’s always come in handy. Mum loves her big family, and having my sister and me and seeing her family grow is Mum’s most cherished memory.”
Betty was a nurse and worked throughout World War II at The Royal United Hospital, where she met and fell in love with John, her first husband and Peter’s Dad, who was a patient. Betty loved being a nurse and caring for people; it was her vocation. Following John’s sad passing, Betty met Ernie, who she married in 1990, and they shared 10 happy years together.
“Mum loves living at The Lawn and especially enjoys her regular exercise classes and craft sessions. All the carers are wonderful. She’s also a keen knitter and, weather permitting, loves to potter around in the care home’s garden. Since Mum was born back in 1921, so many things have changed in the world. It’s hard to imagine, but back then, the Bubonic Plague was still a threat. I read the other day that Prince Philip, Nancy Regan, Charles Bronson, Lana Turner and Tommy Cooper were also all born in 1921; it seems it was a special year, Mum’s in good company.”
Talking about her milestone 100th Birthday celebrations, Betty said:
“I’ve had such a special day, it was so nice to be able to go out with my family again like we always used to, but I have to say, the highlight of my day was my card from the Queen.”
Alina Gutu, the Manager at The Lawn, concluded:
“Everyone at The Lawn wanted to make sure Betty had a fantastic, memorable 100th Birthday. She’s such a lovely, well-loved, friendly and caring member of our Lawn and Friends of the Elderly families; we wanted to make her birthday as special as she is.”