The family of Win Vine have described her as “lively” and “an absolute character” after the 107-year-old sadly passed away last week at home.
Win was well-known in the city, having lived in Eastern Avenue, before moving to Glinton and later Northborough, and is believed to have been one of the oldest residents living in Peterborough and its surrounding villages.
She was perhaps best known by regulars of the Blue Bell Inn in Glinton, which she would eat at twice a week with her son Colin Wootten and her daughter-in-law Vera. Her visits to the pub was something she was able to keep up right until the beginning of lockdown, with red wine her favourite tipple.
Upon her 100th birthday in 2015, Win was awarded a Pride of Peterborough Special Recognition Award by the Peterborough Telegraph and was so highly thought of by locals at the pub that they held a whip raise £400 to replace the amount stolen from Win when she fell victim to a burglary in 2016.
Vera said: “On the outside, she looked just like a sweet old lady but she was an absolute character and everyone that met her loved her.
"She was so lively and had a lovely smile. Her memory never left her and neither did her love of socialising. Right up until the start of the first lockdown, she was still regularly visiting the Blue Bell. It was a real shame and losing that was hard for her."
Win, whose full name was Ada Winifred Vine, was born during the First World War, in 1915 and lived to see so many changes throughout the decades. Her family said that she embraced them all, expect computers!
She was born Stowgate, just north of Deeping, and grew up on Wliderness Farm in Deeping St James; the third daughter of nine children. She used to help her mother sell eggs and butter at her grandfather’s greengrocer’s shop in Gladstone Street, Peterborough. She spent the rest of her childhood mostly looking after her siblings and tending to the cows on the roadside of her rural community.
She left school at the age of 11 and went into service but held a number of roles in later life, including in catering at Peterborough District Hospital, an office filer at Baker Perkins, as well as running her own paper shop in Newborough.
Vera added: “She was very astute. If she had finished school, she could would have been Prime Minister!”
She was twice married, first to William, who passed away in the 1960 and later to George, who lost his battle with cancer 17 years ago.
In her later year, Win would keep herself occupied with quilting, sewing, knitting and word searches but retained an interest in the theatre, museums and used to love attending The Proms at the Royal Albert Hall.
Win’s son Colin added: “She was such a people person, she loved talking with everyone she met and had so many stories. She loved travelling with her husband George and went all across the UK, as well as to America to visit her sister, who had gone moved over there as a war bride at the end of the Second World War.”
Win’s funeral will take place at Peterborough Crematorium on June 8 at midday.