Constance Peace Hailstone (Connie), who was born on Armistice Day and given a name to reflect her parents’ hope for future peace, celebrated her 103rd birthday at The Hermitage in Whittlesey on November 11.
Connie was surrounded by staff at the Whittlesey care home where she lives as she celebrated her special day this Remembrance Day.
She was the third of five children of Jessie and John Bothamley from Peterborough, who were inspired when they named her. Connie said: “The doctor who delivered suggested I should be called Joy or Peace. My parents liked the line of thinking and decided on Constance Peace in hope that their little girl would enjoy her life in constant peace and in the hope she would enjoy her life free of fighting, given the last few war years before I was born.”
Connie was born on the day when the peace truce was signed to mark the end of World War One.
Connie remembers her childhood as ‘very happy’, her father was a cattle dealer in Peterborough and her mother stayed home to look after the family. Sadly, her father died when Connie was just seven-years-old when her mother was expecting their last baby. Connie went on to marry her late husband Thomas in the 1940s and had a daughter, Barbara. The loving family continued the family business of celery growing in Whittlesey until Thomas retired. Both Connie’s husband Tom and daughter Barbara passed away eleven years ago. Connie swears the secret of her long life is ‘working outdoors and a very happy marriage.’
Connie is the doting grandma to Mark and her two great grandchildren Liam and Jade who celebrated another milestone birthday with her and sent beautiful cards, balloons and banners.
Judy Wilson, manager of The Hermitage care home in Whittlesey where Connie lives, said: “I think this is rather special to reach 103 years old.”