Centenary Birthday Celebrations, organised by Community Warden
Published on 30 January 2024 12:00 PM
Connie turned 100 yrs old this month and enjoyed a big surprise.
Living in Ramsey all her life, she reminisces about the local area, how it has changed, and contentedly reflects on her memories. *See her biography below.
Not wanting her birthday milestone to pass by without a big celebration, Ramsey Community Warden, Sara Matthews, organised a party for Connie at the Ramsey Senior Lunch Club. It was a community group effort; the cake was made by another warden service users’ daughter, cupcakes donated from another, and one of Connie’s daughters and granddaughter, pretending to take her shopping, brought her along to the surprise event.
Sara wanted to collect a 100 Birthday Cards for Connie and put a call out to Age UK CAP staff and in the local Spotted In Ramsey magazine. The response was amazing, from the junior school to the Mayor of Ramsey, there was an outpouring of cards from local residents given to Sara to deliver to Connie on her Birthday. In fact 193 cards, almost double Sara's target, were presented in a large box to a very suprised Connie, who is delighted to be gradually working her way through opening and reading every single one!
Connie said “"This has all been such a wonderful surprise and amazing! I can’t remember another Birthday where I’ve had so much fun and excitement! People have been so kind, and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed everything."
Could the Community Warden Service help you?
The Age UK Cambridgeshire and Peterborough (Age UK CAP) Community Warden Service assists older people to continue to live independently at home by providing daily contact (Monday to Friday) and support, either by a personal visit or telephone call, to ensure a sense of security and wellbeing. The service also works alongside family and carers, helping to share support needs.
A warden can help with things such as
- Listening to your concerns and linking you to helpful information and guidance
- Advice on other local community services
- Small items of shopping
- Collecting prescriptions
- Reading post
- Making phone calls on your behalf, if requested
- Ensuring your safety and wellbeing
Find out more about the Community Warden Service:
- For the Ramsey Service contact Sara directly on 07900 340 265
- To enquire about other areas of service delivery email: firstname.lastname@example.org, or phone either Marion Arnold 07944 181 307 or Kelly Mason 07812 496 004
Age UK Cambridgeshire and Peterborough is an independent local charity. Please support our local charity and Get Involved.
Connie Biography summary:
Born January 1924 in one of a row of houses near the Bluebell Public House at the top of Hollow Road Forty Foot Bridge, Ramsey, Connie was the youngest of 3 siblings. She attended Forty Foot School and was said to be the brightest child in school, appearing in the Sunday Express, aged 7, when her head teacher, Mr Willis, wrote to the paper about how some of the children he taught were “exceptional”. Connie would have liked to attend Grammar School, but her parents couldn’t afford it, so she had to leave education at the age of 14yrs.
Connie kept her connections with the school, helping to clean it every day with her mum, after work, until it closed. Connie also used to help clean St Felix Church until it was demolished to make way for the new village hall.
Connie went to work on the land for various local farmers from singling sugar beet, riddling potatoes and onions, picking strawberries, raspberries, and daffodils. It was very hard work, but she made a lifetime of friends. She still likes to have her ‘dockey’ (a snack) at 10.30 am!
Connie liked to spend her spare time cycling with friends to surrounding towns such as Peterborough, March, and St Ives. “There were fewer cars, and everyone was so friendly.”
She moved with her family to her current home in the village in 1938. One evening she went to the Grand Cinema in Ramsey and a lad accidently caught the back of her heel on the stairs, this is how she met Frank who was stationed at RAF Upwood. The couple wed in 1941, when she was 17, and only a few weeks later Frank was sent to Egypt by the RAF, and they spent 4 years apart.
During the war (WW2) Connie helped the British Red Cross, passing all the exams. On Frank’s return they settled in Ramsey Forty Foot and raised four children. Connie continued to do land work around bringing up the children and was a lunch-time helper at Ramsey Spinning Infants, Ramsey Abbey and Ailwyn Schools.
Connie was known locally being involved with many organisations, to include WI, Royal British Legion, and on the committee for both the Old and new Forty Foot Village Hall. She and Frank loved ballroom dancing and also enjoyed indoor and outdoor bowls, playing competitively across the district.
Connie still keeps her mind active doing daily wordsearch and reads at least nine library books a month! She likes to keep up to date with what’s going on in the world by reading the papers and watching the news on TV and often helped her grandchildren and now great grandchildren with their homework. Connie has six grandchildren and nine great grandchildren who she says keep her young.
Connie says that she’s had a lovely life and is very contented to be at home.