St Albans’ oldest resident dies at 108

PUBLISHED: 07:15 18 March 2012

Ruth Prince. 108th birthday.

Ruth Prince. 108th birthday.

CENTENARIAN-plus Ruth Prince, described as “a little lady with a big heart” has passed away at the grand age of 108.

Ruth, a resident at Thomas Sparrow House in Wheathampstead, died earlier this month with her nephew Simon Scoins at her side.

She was born in Tunbridge Wells on July 10, 1903, and moved to London Colney at the age of 15, where she worked in a laundry.

She married her late husband Albert at the age of 35. Albert was a milkman and Ruth would often help out with the early morning deliveries.

Although the couple did not have any children, they shared a love of animals and spent their married life living in Sandridge.

Ruth, who had one sister called Dorothy, nursed Albert for seven years before he passed away.

Failing eyesight meant that she had to move to Thomas Sparrow House in 1994 where she remained very active and still enjoyed a good time.

An operation also led to her sight returning.

Ruth regularly visited Stratford-upon-Avon for birthdays and at Christmas, and to mark her 108th birthday she had high tea at Ettington Park Hotel near to the town.

She also celebrated the occasion with a party at Thomas Sparrow House, where she was visited by the Mayor, Cllr Aisleen Lee.

Ruth put her long life down to drinking a pint of milk a day but nephew Simon says that those who knew her would probably think it was her happy, generous and endearing nature, her love of life and the people around her.

He continued: “She will be missed by so many people who loved her.”

Her funeral will be held at West Herts Crematorium, Garston, Watford tomorrow (Friday, March 16).

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Recently we, as a family (minus two of the kids), visited The Lodge RSPB reserve in Sandy, Bedfordshire. I had never been before, which is perhaps amiss of me as a birdwatcher as it is the headquarters of the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds or RSPB and only 45 minutes drive from home.

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