100 not out for former mill girl Nellie

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A lifelong Batley resident who was born in the town during World War One has celebrated her 100th birthday.

Nellie Ashton marked the milestone with family and friends at Lydgate Lodge care home, where mayor of Kirklees Coun Paul Kane also dropped by to congratulate her.

The centenarian, who helped out on the home’s reception desk when she first moved there five years ago, received a birthday card from the Queen and staff threw a party in her honour.

Nellie and her twin brother were born in Batley in 1916, and were part of a large family with three older brothers and two sisters.

She attended the parish school and later worked as a cook at Burrows Mill before marrying her husband Clifford and raising their daughters, Glennis and June.

Later in life, the keen animal lover became a fundraiser for Guide Dogs for the Blind, and she still enjoys spending time with her eight grandchildren and 16 great-grandchildren.

“Everyone here at Lydgate Lodge had a great time celebrating Nellie’s 100th birthday.

“We were particularly excited to welcome the mayor and Nellie enjoyed spending time with her family.

“There is always something going on at the home but all the residents love a birthday party!

“Nellie is a real character and is really popular here with both staff and other residents.

“ She used to enjoy sitting at the reception desk welcoming visitors and helping out,” said Lydgate Lodge manager Bev Hanson.

Coun Kane, who is also a dedicated charity supporter, enjoyed chatting to Nellie about their shared interest in fundraising for dogs charities.

“We are already looking forward to making arrangements for Nellie’s 101st birthday!” added Bev.

During the year of Nellie’s birth, the British army carried out the first successful blood transfusion using stored blood, the country of Poland was created and the infamous Battle of the Somme was fought. In Montana, USA, the largest change in temperature in a single day was recorded - from 44 degrees to minus 56 degrees in 24 hours.