Wheathampstead woman celebrates 108th birthday

PUBLISHED: 06:57 19 July 2011

Ruth Prince with the Mayor Aislinn Lee and Consort Rosemary Bennett.

Ruth Prince with the Mayor Aislinn Lee and Consort Rosemary Bennett.

THERE was a special celebration at Thomas Sparrow House last Thursday as one of its residents celebrated her 108th birthday.

Ruth Prince has lived at the council-run Thomas Sparrow House in Wheathampstead, for the last 17 years and marked the milestone with carers, staff, fellow residents and Mayor of St Albans, Cllr Aisleen Lee, amongst others.

Born in Tunbridge Wells on July 10, 1903, Ruth lived with her parents who both died by the time she was 11. She had one sister named Dorothy who passed away a few years ago.

In 1941, Ruth married her husband Albert in London Colney. He was a milkman and used to get up early to milk the cows by hand before delivering it around the town using a hand cart.

He later got a pony and cart and Ruth would help out by leading the pony. She recalled how one day the horse became frightened and ran off, leaving milk scattered all over the road! She also worked in laundry during the Second World War.

The couple, who had no children, moved to a cottage on Nomansland Common in Wheathampstead before later moving to Sandridge.

Ruth finally moved to Thomas Sparrow House in 1994 and has had the same carer, Helen, for the past 12 years.

Her good friend Joan Cashford, 84, said: “Ruth is lovely; she’s very generous, kind-hearted and likes to have people around her.”

Always conscious to look her best, Ruth had her hair done specially for last week’s celebration and was dressed in one of her favourite outfits from Marks and Spencer.

During the party, which was organised by Alderman Chris Oxley, the 108-year-old was presented with flowers by the Mayor and with a huge cake, which was baked by Mr Oxley’s wife Marion.

Mr Oxley said: “I’ve met Ruth three times now and she’s very sprightly. All the staff at Thomas Sparrow House have said what a lovely person she is.”

If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Herts Advertiser. Click the link in the yellow box below for details.

Become a supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years, through good times and bad, serving as your advocate and trusted source of local information. Our industry is facing testing times, which is why I’m asking for your support. Every single contribution will help us continue to produce award-winning local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Thank you.

Most Read

Most Read

Latest from the Herts Advertiser