Edith turns 104

LOCKDOWN could not stop one Chorley family celebrating their eldest member's 104th birthday.

By Bryan Walker
Friday, 19th June 2020, 3:12 pm
Updated Friday, 19th June 2020, 3:14 pm
Tea and cakes at Edith's party
Tea and cakes at Edith's party

LOCKDOWN could not stop one Chorley family celebrating their eldest member's 104th birthday.

Edith Berry, whose actual birthday is on Sunday, was treated to a special garden party at Highgrove House care home in the town. Celebrations included a socially distanced visit from her granddaughter Karen.

Enjoying a glass of sherry, the birthday girl admitted that the secret to her longevity is ‘a little bit of what you fancy does you good’.

A grandmother and great grandmother, Edith was born on June 21, 1916. A hairdresser for most of her life in Tameside, Manchester, Edith was married to Ernest Berry for 60 years until his death. The couple had one daughter, Jeanne, who sadly has passed away.

Edith moved to Chorley to be near her grandchildren, Carl, Richard and Karen. They have all missed visiting her since the lockdown. But Karen was able to wish her 'Nana' a happy birthday from a safe distance in the home’s garden.

Karen said Edith had been the youngest of 10 girls, adding: “As the youngest she was always sent to do the shopping and the list would always be 12 of everything, but Edith was a little crafty and would get 13 so she could get extra for herself."

Her grandmother is also a big sports fan. Karen explained: "You couldn't ring Nana when the tennis was on the TV as she just wouldn’t answer. She loves horse racing and would often go to Ascot on the train, first class from Manchester to London, she still enjoys watching horse racing on TV.”

Polly Bateman, manager of Highgrove House, said: “We were delighted to host Edith’s birthday celebrations at the home.

“These are difficult and uncertain times, so marking such an important birthday has brought a bit of joy to the home, both for staff and residents.

“It’s been about 10 weeks since Edith have been able to see any of her family in person, so it was such a comfort for her to have Karen join us. She was overjoyed to see her."

Karen said: "I couldn’t ask for Nana to be in better hands, the love and care she is shown is heartwarming. It’s quite an achievement to reach 104 and the team at Highgrove House made sure she had a fabulous party to celebrate.”

The staff also celebrated the life of resident Hilda Hunt, who would have been 100 on June 17 but sadly passed away just four days before her milestone birthday.

Hilda, from Whittle-le-Woods, Chorley, was born on June 17, 1920 and was married to Fred Hunt for 20 years until he sadly passed away at 59. The couple had one daughter, Janice, and two granddaughters, Lindsey and Catherine, who were all regular visitors to the home prior to the restrictions.

Hilda’s birthday was commemorated by the staff and residents, who raised a glass on what would have been her 100th birthday.

Polly added: “Hilda was a lovely lady and will be greatly missed by everyone.”