Betty, a resident at Care South’s Wickmeads care home in Southbourne, Bournemouth celebrated her milestone 105th birthday on Tuesday 27th June.
Betty joined the home in 2022 and was born in Birmingham in 1918. A few years after she was born, Betty and her parents, Maud and Ivor moved to Aldershot.
As she grew up, Betty remained in Aldershot and began working at a gas and electric utility company where she met the love of her life, Rocky Knight. As Betty and Rocky began courting, Great Britain was shaken by the start of World War ll. Betty served the country as a member of the Auxiliary Territorial Service (ATS), a women’s unit, and was based in an Army post office service in Nottingham. Rocky and Betty married on the on 8th December 1945, just over three months after the war ended.
Betty and Rocky had a busy married life, living with Rocky’s family in Yately for a period of time, before moving to Fleet to start their own family. She is a very proud mother of two daughters, Stephanie and Leonie and one son, Richard.
The family then moved to Bournemouth in 1957, where they lived a ten-minute walk from Fisherman’s Walk beach in Southbourne. Some of Betty’s favourite memories with her family were made in the seaside town, and she loved living so close to the beautiful, blue ocean. As her children got older, Betty, a talented seamstress, took a job at Mostyn’s in Boscombe making curtains. Betty worked many hours and created countless curtains, and made enough money to attend her dream experience, the passion play in Oberammergau, Germany, which is held once every decade. Betty enjoyed it so much that she attended the next one ten years later.
Betty now lives in Wickmeads care home in Southbourne, and has three grandsons, one granddaughter and is the great-grandmother of six. She celebrated her milestone 105th birthday at the home, starting the day with a special pamper session at the on-site hairdressers, and spent the afternoon opening cards and presents surrounded by family, friends and fellow residents. To mark the special occasion, friend and performer Mike Sideaway helped Betty celebrate her birthday in style with songs from Cliff Richard, Abba, and many more, as everyone enjoyed some drinks and dancing. Towards the end of the performance, Betty was surprised with a delicious birthday cake and the home sang happy birthday to her.
Georgia Grou, Activities Lead at Wickmeads, said: “Betty turning 105 is a spectacular achievement, and we were delighted to share this wonderful day with a special party for her. It was fantastic to see Betty celebrate her 105th birthday with her friends, family and fellow residents. Our staff, residents and family members were thrilled to raise a glass to Betty and her very special birthday!”