Care team throw surprise party to mark Kathleen’s milestone 100th birthday

Elworth Grange resident, Kathleen Wood, has celebrated turning 100 years young with a special surprise party thrown for her by the care home team.

Kathleen enjoyed a fun-filled day of celebrations along with her family, her friends and the care team at Elworth Grange care home in Sandbach.

The care home was decked with flowers and balloons and Kathleen received a special toast before being whisked off by a chauffeur driven limousine to enjoy lunch with her family. On her return to Elworth Grange, the care team organised an afternoon tea with birthday cake, party games and music from the 1920s, the decade she was born.

Kathleen was born in Cardiff in 1922. She was a secretary for the civil service during the war and also took on air raid duties. She married Stanley, a chief engineer in the Royal Air Force, and they had two sons, Brian and Michael. As an RAF family they moved extensively, living in South Africa, Malta, Germany and the United States as well as at various RAF bases in the UK.

In the 1970s, Stanley was awarded an MBE for services rendered in defence of the realm and the whole family went with him to Buckingham Palace where he received his award from the Queen Mother. Kathleen’s brother David, now 96, and her son Brian have also been awarded MBEs over the years, a huge achievement for one family!

After Stanley passed away in 2002, age 82, Kathleen sadly lost her youngest son Michael in a road traffic accident and decided to move to Macclesfield to be close to her eldest son, Brian and his family. She now has a six-year-old great grandson, named after them, called Stanley Michael.

Kathleen, who moved to Elworth Grange two years ago, said: “Everyone has been so kind, and my birthday was a very special day.”

When asked about her long life, Kathleen said: “I have done lots of wonderful things and have helped others when I can.”

Sarah Rodger, care home manager at Elworth Grange, said: “Kathleen is such a kind lady with a wonderful sense of humour, she’s always smiling and is still very independent, helping out around the home. She enjoys reading the daily papers and keeping up with the news and what’s going on in the world.

“She has received so many birthday cards from our local community, including the local preschool, who all wanted to wish her well. She also received a very special card from the Queen! Our residents made banners which we hung around the lounge, and we spent a lovely afternoon playing games, singing and dancing.

“We were honoured to be able to spend this special day with Kathleen and her family.”

Elworth Grange on James Brindley Drive (off Booth Lane) in Sandbach, is a residential and dementia care home operated by Ideal Carehomes.