Royal messages for two centenarians

Joan Sharman celebrates her 100th
Joan Sharman celebrates her 100th

Bedfordshire has celebrated not one, but two, senior residents’ 100th birthdays.

Gladys Pengilley reached her century last Tuesday, which was marked by festivities at her Ampthill home, followed by Joan Sharman, who turned 100 three days later.

Gladys’ daughter, Beryl Pengilley, said: “The birthday card from the Queen arrived and mum was very proud of it.

“She showed it to everybody.

“She actually had three parties, one with 19 members of her immediate family, one with her friends who live at the extra care housing, and another with her nephews and nieces.”

Joan Sharman celebrated her centenary at her Bedford flat with her family.

Reminiscing about her time in the town she said: “In my 20s, I would play tennis at Russell Park, and swim in Newnham Baths by the river, with the fish!

“I also enjoyed dancing at the Corn Exchange and at the Du John dance hall, and playing badminton at Bradgate Tennis club.”

Joan worked at Wells Furniture and China shop, by Market Square before she married Bedford’s rugby fly-half Nicky Sharman, at St Cuthbert’s Church, in 1938.

Among her party guests were her two grandsons and four great-grandsons.