A WOMAN who lives at Horton Cross Nursing said her secret to a long life is to “work hard and never give up” as she celebrates her 100th birthday.

Ivy has been a resident at Horton Cross Nursing since February 2021 and yesterday (Thursday, October 12) celebrated her special day with other residents and staff at the nursing home.

Ivy’s best friend is Bev, who was also her main carer at home for many years before Ivy was admitted to Horton Cross.

Chard & Ilminster News:

Ivy, who also received a letter from King Charles III, said: “I was born in London in the East End. I never went to school much as my mum was quite poorly, so I used to look after her a lot.

“I used to push her to the seafront on her good days weather permitting.

“This is where I have fond memories of a special person in my life, a man who worked on the boats.

“I knew then and I was only eighteen that I wanted to marry him. Sadly, the war broke out, I waited and waited, eighteen years in total, but it wasn’t to be.

Chard & Ilminster News:

“I worked at home as a machinist making blouses for a Jewish gentleman, 20 a day, and at night, I used to have to iron and box up as they all had lace on the front which I had sewn on, I had one of the very first singer sewing machines.

“My main love is animals, I had two cats, one called Puss and one called Cat. I used to take all the stray animals and care for them, I would have liked to work in the zoo, but circumstances didn’t allow that to happen.

“One animal always sticks in my mind, my pet turkey who slept in the pear tree but one night, lightening struck the tree and he fell out and broke his leg.

“So, I wrapped him up and took him on a bus ride to the vets, he put his leg in a cast, so then went on a second bus ride and lived a long and happy life with me.

“My favourite pop star is Elvis Presley and my favourite song is Love Me Tender.

“I then met my husband, and we had a wonderful time in our married life.

"My secret to a long life is to work hard and never give up.”