Sun, 25 Sept 2016
A NEWBURY woman celebrated her 101st birthday last month.
Kath Gibbs was born in Newbury on August 23, 1915, and has lived in the town throughout her long life.
Mrs Gibbs celebrated reaching the impressive milestone with family members, friends and residents at Care UK’s Winchcombe Place care home.
When asked about her secret, Mrs Gibbs said: ‘There is no secret really, just living a normal life and being interested in everything going on around you.
“Drinking milk, eating fruit and vegetables from the garden and plenty of company helps too.”
Mrs Gibbs attended the Council Modern School before leaving at the age of 15 to take up a job in the ladies department at Beynons of Newbury, where she worked for 12 years. She met her future husband Robert during the Second World War, and they tied the knot on New Year’s Eve 1941 when Mr Gibbs had a 72-hour pass from the army.
When the war ended, the couple both worked for Southern Electric, using their savings to build their own house.
Mrs Gibbs supported her local church, St John’s, helping with activities and services, and church members often drop in to Winchcombe Place to pay her a visit.
Mr Gibbs was a church -warden and the couple helped raised money to rebuild St John’s after it was damaged in a German air raid.
She lived in her own home until she was 99 years old but after a number of falls decided she did not want to live alone and made the move to Winchcombe Place.
At the home, Mrs Gibbs enjoys knitting, sewing and helping in the garden and takes an interest in all the activity within the home.
Home manager at Winchcombe Place, Stephanie Jones, said: “We always like to make an occasion of birthdays and Kath’s 101st birthday is no exception.
“We made sure that she had a great day and our head chef, Gary Shaw, prepared a special birthday cake to mark the milestone.
“It was lovely to see all of her family and friends around her to celebrate the occasion.”