ONE of the North-East’s oldest residents has celebrated her 106th birthday with a party surrounded by family and friends.

Gwendoline Darwin was born on February 29, 1908, meaning she has only celebrated 27 official birthdays during her life.

Mrs Darwin celebrated her 106th year with her family at The Lawns care home, in Ridsdale Street, in Darlington, where she has lived for three years.

Loading article content

Her son-in-law Andrew Cooke, who was married to Mrs Darwin’s only daughter, Mary, until her death in 2002, and granddaughters Sarah and Debbie were among ten family and friends who travelled to Darlington for the celebrations.

Staff at the care home put Mrs Darwin’s longevity and excellent memory down to the kipper she eats each morning for breakfast, although Mr Cooke noted that she also has a fondness for chocolate éclairs.