Harold Wood woman described as “lively” celebrates 100th birthday

18:00 30 April 2014

Rose Caiquo with Cllr Brian Eagling. She turned 100 today and St Ethelburga Court care home where she lives held a surprise party for her.

Rose Caiquo with Cllr Brian Eagling. She turned 100 today and St Ethelburga Court care home where she lives held a surprise party for her.


Despite reaching her 100th birthday, one woman is livelier than ever and shows no sign of slowing down anytime soon.

Rose Lench, who now lives at St Ethelburga Court, in Ethelburga Road, Harold Wood, celebrated one hundred years of memories at her party earlier this month.

Social secretary at the care home, Avril Newman, said: “She doesn’t act like she’s 100! She is always asking if she can do anything to help us out and do things the other residents who are a lot younger than herself!”

Born in 1914 in Bethnal Green to Louise and Herbert Thorn, Rose went to Wilmott Street School, where she loved anything to do with playing games and sports.

But once she left school, Rose tried her hand at different jobs from dress making to envelope licking at a factory where she met the love of her life Joseph Lench, who worked at the company as a painter.

Rose said: “My first thoughts were that he was that he looked very nice and when I got to know him more I realised he was an even nicer man.”

Once the couple married at St Andrews church in Bethnal Green, the pair began travelling all over the world, including Austria, Italy, Bulgaria, Egypt, Turkey, Brazil and Malta, just to name a few.

She said: “I love to travel and to explore different places but I still think marrying Joseph is the best memory I have.”

Rose’s husband sadly passed away shortly after moving to Spain, but on her return to the UK, she moved into Harold Wood care home, St Ethelburga Court where the party was held.

Rose’s daughter Barbara Stonely, said: “She is truly an amazing and lively woman and I hope that I will live as long as she has done!”

Councillor Brian Eagling (Residents’ Group, Harold Wood ward), also went to the party, having one of the first dances with the woman of the hour.

Cllr Eagling said: “She is a very lovely lady and someone who I am very honoured to meet and enjoy such a wonderful party with.”

Rose said: “The party was really wonderful. There were so many people there and I’ve received around 200 cards which I’m very grateful for.”

She added: “I think the secret to a long life is just to work hard and to be happy.”


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