Norah celebrates 100 years in style

PUBLISHED: 09:48 06 January 2006 | UPDATED: 11:27 04 May 2010

Norah celebrates her 100th

Norah celebrates her 100th

A LITTLE Thetford woman celebrated her 100th birthday over Christmas with more than 80 friends and family and a message from the Queen. Norah Bedford, of Witchford Road, Ely, had 88 guests at her home on her birthday on December 27, and she received a ca

A LITTLE Thetford woman celebrated her 100th birthday over Christmas with more than 80 friends and family and a message from the Queen.

Norah Bedford, of Witchford Road, Ely, had 88 guests at her home on her birthday on December 27, and she received a card from the Queen wishing her a happy birthday and a merry Christmas.

Mrs Bedford was born in Bluntisham a century ago, before she went to the Girls' Collegiate School in St Ives. She met her husband, Cyril, at a tennis club, and the couple wed in 1930 at St Mary's Church, Bluntisham.

The newly-weds then moved into Braham Farm, off the A10 between Ely and Little Thetford, which they farmed for more than 30 years.

They had two sons, Denis and John.

Mrs Bedford said the area has changed completely since she originally moved to the farm.

"There were lots of people that kept cattle - but you don't see that anymore," she said.

Mrs Bedford is a member of the congregation at Little Thetford Church, where she was treasurer for 30 years, and she also served as chairman of Ely Diocesan Synod for 10 years.

She was county chair of the WI, as well as president of the Little Thetford branch and an Isle of Ely county councillor.

"I've always enjoyed meeting people," she said. "And I enjoyed the bustle of it all."

She was also a school governor, and is still treasurer of Stretham Mothers' Union today. She goes out for lunch twice a week, and lives with 82-year-old Mary Burling, who lived with the Bedford's at Braham Farm as a family retainer, carrying out domestic duties for the family.

Mrs Bedford's daughter-in-law, Enid Bedford, said: "She is still very active and does the crossword every day, as well as crochet work."

Mrs Bedford said it is important to be surrounded by family.

"My family are very careful of me and take very good care of me," she said.

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