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Sprightly Lilian celebrates milestone
5:15pm Tuesday 22nd December 2009 in Clent
A SPRIGHTLY Clent centenarian went back to her old school to give youngsters a few lessons about life in bygone times.
Lilian Griffiths, of Holy Cross, celebrated her 100th birthday on December 17 - and as part of celebrations ahead of the big day she stopped off at Clent Primary School, where she spent her schooldays around 90 years ago.
Lily, who has lived in the village all her life, was invited into the school to talk to pupils - but it came as a complete shock when she realised they had laid on a special tea and performance especially for her.
Acting headteacher Sue Shaw said: “At the end of the performance she was presented with a lovely basket of flowers and a birthday card signed by every child at the school.
“Lily was overhwelmed. She thought she was coming to a performance. Little did she know there would be a presentation and the whole school community of Clent would be singing happy birthday.
“She was absolutely delighted. It was a wonderful occasion, bringing together young and old.”
On Lily’s milestone birthday itself - friends and relatives flocked to her Clent cottage, which she has lived in for 70 years, to wish her many happy returns.
Inundated with flowers, plants, chocolates, presents and cards - including one from The Queen - she said: “It was a lovely day.”
As part of birthday celebrations, Lilian was also interviewed on her favourite radio programme - the Carl Chinn show on BBC Radio WM.
Despite her advancing years - the great-great aunt, who worked as a domestic help in her youth, still cooks a hot meal every day and makes sure she keeps herself fit by doing exercises each day.
Friend and villager Carole Hodgson described her as “amazing” - adding: “She’s very thoughtful and she likes a joke.”
Widowed 23 years ago - Lilian puts her long life down to having a good routine, never smoking, eating good food and enjoying a glass of wine with dinner.
She added: “I don’t feel 100, I feel about 70. You just have to keep on going. I’m very lucky that I can get about.”
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