Centenarians’ double celebration

Lady Olive Strathspey received a bouque from Church Farm care home manager Doreen Saunders on her 104th birthday
Lady Olive Strathspey received a bouque from Church Farm care home manager Doreen Saunders on her 104th birthday

Two big birthdays have been celebrated with music at an East Wittering care home.

Church Farm resident Mrs Joan Pettman was 101 on August 1, then fellow resident Lady Olive Strathspey was 104 on August 6.

Mrs Joan Pettman was serenaded by Bing Lyle on her 101st birthday

Mrs Joan Pettman was serenaded by Bing Lyle on her 101st birthday

Mrs Pettman had a surprise visit from Bing Lyle, who played Happy Birthday on his accordion while she blew out the candles on her cake, with care staff singing along.

Bing also serenaded Mrs Pettman with her favourite song, The White Cliffs of Dover.

Asked her secret to living to 101, she said it was just that – a secret! However, she did add that walking at least four miles a day in her younger years had helped, she believed.

Lady Strathspey celebrated with a Rat Pack and Swing afternoon, with all residents and staff dancing and singing along. She even took to the floor with the microphone and sang along with the entertainer.

Everyone sang Happy Birthday and home manager Doreen Saunders presented Lady Strathspey with a bouquet.

Mrs Pettman was born in London on August 1, 1916. Her first job was as a hairdresser but she went on to model clothing for prospective purchasers at Bourne and Hollingsworth department store in Oxford Street.

During the Second World War, she worked in the NAAFI canteen. After the war, she married and had three children. Joan now has two grandchildren and three great-grandchildren. Lady Olive Strathspey was born on August 6, 1913, in Norfolk. She served in the Army and was promoted to the rank of major. During the Second World War, she was posted to Italy, Germany and finally Scotland, where she was in charge of 3,000 women. Following the war, she married and had two children.