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Party time for a special lady

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By Abbey Morton
Party time for a special lady

A SPECIAL birthday was celebrated in style at Bankfoot House in Moffat last week.

Centenarian Nan Irving, nee Roddick, enjoyed a party with staff and fellow Bankfoot residents and was delighted to have a visit from her family, albeit through the window due to Covid-19 restrictions.

Balloon and banners decorated Bankfoot for Nan’s big day, and a supersized cake covered in chocolate was brought out for everyone to enjoy.

She also received many cards, including one from Her Majesty The Queen.

Nan was born in Parliament Square, Langholm, in 1921, the elder of two sisters.

She did well at school in Langholm and was meant to advance to Dumfries Academy in 1935, but her parents felt they could not afford this, the attitude of many in those days being that girls would not benefit from higher education.

During WWII out she volunteered for munitions work at The Broom, near Powfoot.

She then spent her war underground, working in several inches of water making PETN high explosive.

After marrying her husband Archie on his return from the RAF, she went on to work as a pharmacy dispenser in Langholm for 33 years before retiring at 70.

She has one son, John, grandchildren Nicola and Craig, and a little great granddaughter, Charlotte.

Nan attributes her longevity to having been an active walker and badminton player into late age, and admits it probably helped being a teetotaller and non-smoker all her life.

She was also an enthusiastic member of the Old Parish Church choir for 40 years, and in fact lived in the same house in Langholm from 1933, before moving to Bankfoot, where she has stayed happily since 2018.

Bankfoot House director Janet Tildesley said: “Despite the unusual arrangements, this very special day was enjoyed by everyone, particularly by Nan.”

And a member of staff said: “We are absolutely delighted to be sharing this very special day with Nan and her family.

“Reaching 100 years of age is a remarkable achievement.

“Born just after the end of the First World War, Nan has witnessed enormous changes in the world over her lifetime.

“It is a privilege to be able to care for her.”

BIRTHDAY CELEBRATIONS . . . Nan’s son John and grandson Craig at Bankfoot on Friday *** Local Caption *** BIRTHDAY CELEBRATIONS . . . NanÕs son John and grandson Craig at Bankfoot on Friday
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