Ramzy Alwakeel, Reporter
Tuesday, November 6, 2012
A lifelong Hornchurch and Upminster resident with a special connection to the borough’s animal lovers celebrated her 100th birthday at the weekend.
Jean Wylie’s centenary party, which took place on Saturday, November 3, saw children, nieces and nephews fill a room at Meadowbanks Care Home, where she and her husband Richard, 98, live.
Jean, who was born in Hornchurch, moved after her marriage in 1938.
Back in the 1930s, Richard ran the Wylie veterinary surgery that still bears his name today, even though it is no longer a family business..
“I moved to Upminster because my husband’s work was there,” Jean remembered. “He was a veterinary surgeon and he had his own practice.”
So how does the London borough of today compare with the Essex towns of Jean’s youth?
“You have no idea,” she said. “It’s a different place.”
But that doesn’t mean Jean has lost her love of the area. “I wouldn’t want to live anywhere else,” she said. “I’ve been here all my life.”
The Hall Lane resident said there was no great secret to her long life. “I’m still surprised myself,” she chuckled.
But the key to her successful marriage is simple. “We just love each other,” the mother-of-four told the Recorder.