Family gathers for Lark Rise centenarian’s birthday

Irene Hodgkinson is joined by four generations as they celebrate her 100th birthday. NNL-181023-170800009
Irene Hodgkinson is joined by four generations as they celebrate her 100th birthday. NNL-181023-170800009

Over a dozen family members spanning four generations visited Lark Rise Care Home this week to wish a very special lady happy birthday.

Born in Bradford, west Yorkshire, on October 23, 1918, Irene Hodgkinson, nee de Courcy, celebrated her 100th birthday in Banbury surrounded by relatives including her great-grandchildren.

Irene Hodgkinson of Lark Rise Care Home, Banbury, is 100 years old. NNL-181023-170727009

Irene Hodgkinson of Lark Rise Care Home, Banbury, is 100 years old. NNL-181023-170727009

Irene left school at 14 years old and started her working life as a weaver. She was one of five children having two brothers, Louis and Walter and two sisters Lucy and Margaret.

Irene met her first husband through family in Bradford. She married a second time, to Peter, at the grand old age of 75 in a ceremony not typical of your average pensioner.

Daughter Carole Paul, said: “She got married in Las Vegas, we all went over.

“They were originally going to get married on a Mississippi steam boat but when they got there the paperwork wasn’t correct.”

Some of the items from Irene's past were displayed at her birthday party

Some of the items from Irene's past were displayed at her birthday party

The family had set up a reminiscence table which included her Las Vegas marriage certificate and her christening gown.

Asked for the secret of her mothers longevity Carole said: “I would say she has always ate sensibly and not a lot.

“She would have one biscuit and not the packet full. She could quite easily say no to cake.”

Carole added: “I don’t take after her.”

The all important cake

The all important cake

Irene said of the party: “It was a lovely surprise.”