Ex-Sunday school teacher Gertrude reaches 101 after avoiding cigarettes and alcohol

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Hillbury Care Home resident Gertrude Jones has celebrated her 101st birthday. Pictured looking at her cards with Lisa Bowring

Avoiding alcohol and cigarettes were among the secrets of long life for a great-grandmother who has celebrated her 101st birthday.

Former Sunday school teacher Gertrude Jones was born in 1917 when the First World War was still raging, when the Russian Revolution started and Albert Einstein published his first paper on Cosmology.

Hillbury Care Home resident Gertrude Jones has celebrated her 101st birthday. Pictured looking at her cards with Lisa Bowring

She has been resident of Pendine Park’s Hillbury Care Home in Wrexham for the past six years and volunteered at the town’s Nightingale House Hospice until she was 92.

Gertrude, who was born in Lowestoft but moved to Wrexham as a child, is surprised as anyone that she has made it to 101 not out.

Daughter, Kath Teburi said: “She’s really very well considering her age. Mum worked as a volunteer at the Nightingale House Hospice charity shop well into her 90s and has always been very active.

“She loved bingo and was a regular at the Mecca in Wrexham and she always liked simple things like knitting, crochet and doing crosswords. She would do anything for anybody, that’s just her nature.”

Gertrude, whose maiden name was Wraight, married Herbert Lee Jones who was a maintenance worker at the army barracks in Hightown and they had four children.

Kath said: “Dad and mum were married for 49 years and just missed out on their golden wedding celebration as dad passed away in 1989.

“Of their children I am the youngest, then there’s my two brothers Neville and Jim and we had a sister, Eileen. Mum now has 11 grandchildren, 15 great grandchildren and just one great-great grandchild.

“It was just lucky that my grandfather moved his family, including my mum to Wrexham as he got a job in the town all those years ago. They lived in Salop Road. Mum went to went to was the National School but that’s now called St Giles.

“She was also a Sunday school teacher for many years at the chapel in Talbot Road but that was when she was much younger.”

She added: “All the family will be popping in and she has enjoyed a party and birthday cake with other residents which has been fabulous.

“Cindy Clutton the manager and her staff at Hillbury are fantastic and nothing is too much trouble. She doesn’t want for anything and despite spending a lot of time sleeping these days she is still up for the occasional sing-song when the mood takes her.”

According to Cindy, Gertrude was a very popular lady with care staff and her fellow residents.

She said: “We think the world of Gertrude and to reach the grand old age of 101 is a fantastic achievement. She is very quiet these days but Kath is quite right in saying she still enjoys a sing-song and she retains a great sense of humour.

“However, despite her age and the fact she is very quiet she soon lets our care team or me know if anything is wrong or she isn’t happy for whatever reason.

“She is an amazing lady and I’m delighted she enjoyed a quiet birthday celebration with other residents and staff and of course her family members who all called in at some point to share the special day with her.”