Independent woman Dorothy turns 100

Dorothy Luxton celebrates her 100th birthday with Sandra Dekle, Jill Bamber, Margaret Greenhalgh and

Dorothy Luxton celebrates her 100th birthday with Sandra Dekle, Jill Bamber, Margaret Greenhalgh and Ibby Harper. Ref shs 3400-08-15TI. Picture: Terry Ife - Credit: Archant

An ‘independent’ and ‘amazing’ 100-year-old celebrated her birthday in style, with family flying in from South Carolina for her special day.

Dorothy Luxton was joined by relatives on Wednesday for a buffet lunch at the Rose Lawn Care Home in Sidmouth.

Kerrie Howard, manager of the care home, said: “She goes out to the hairdresser’s and to the high street, independently, three or four times a day.

“She is just an amazing lady. She is great fun.”

Dorothy received a card from the Queen and a telegram from the Home Secretary wishing her a happy birthday.

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After she blew out the candles on her cake, Dorothy said: “I do not feel a day over 70. Actually, I do not feel any older than 60!”

Born in Eastbourne on February 18, 1915, she moved with her mother and two brothers to Sidbury after her father was killed in the Battle of Viney Ridge.

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A talented seamstress, Dorothy was often given sewing to do by the headteacher, Mrs Prendergast, rather than attending class. After leaving Sidbury Primary School at the age of 14, she became a trainee dressmaker at Fields.

At the age of 24, Dorothy married her husband, Peter, moving around the country with their three daughters. The couple moved back to Sidmouth on Peter’s retirement.

Her niece, Ibby, and her husband, Dill, moved to Florence, South Carolina, in 1990, but enjoy coming back to Sidmouth, where Ibby was born.

Dill said: “It is great seeing all of her friends and socialising with Dorothy on her birthday. I am amazed at the number of cards and ones from the Queen and House of Commons. The President of America doesn’t do this.”

He added: “I have it on camera when she said,‘I can’t die yet -my bus pass hasn’t run out’.”

More family will be joining Dorothy at the Riveria Hotel, Sidmouth, tomorrow, including her three children, seven grandchildren and 12 great -grandchildren.

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