A lifelong Slough resident has celebrated her 100th birthday.

Joan Gillham has five grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren and celebrated her birthday at Windmill Care Centre alongside family and friends.

Joan has lived in Slough for most of her life and has resided at Windmill Care Centre for the past three years.

When asked what she thinks about reaching 100, Joan said: “Goodness gracious. I really can’t believe it. I’ve been so lucky”.

Born in Ramsbury, Wiltshire, on April 22, 1924, Joan, known to her family as “Bubbles” due to her auburn curls, grew up in Stoke Poges where her father took a job as Head Gardener at Stoke Poges Golf Club (Stoke Park), where Joan recalls enjoying birthday parties in the Club House.

After leaving school at just 14, Joan went to work at Horlicks and continued there through the war years.

In 1948 she married Gordon, the youngest of five brothers from Chalvey, at Stoke Poges Church. The couple lived in Chalvey, and had two children, Graham and Linda, born ten years apart, before moving to Cippenham in 1970.

Gordon was a stalwart member of the Cippenham British Legion and after his passing in 1987, Joan continued to enjoy the friendship and company of fellow members well into her nineties – attending the weekly raffle, bingo and joining the annual Remembrance Day parade.

Joan spent twenty-five years with Langley-based Nightingale Travel, as an escort on the daily coach runs to the day centres for people with learning difficulties, at times juggling this with dinner lady duties.

Joan continued to live independently well into her nineties, moving into Windmill Care Centre in 2020

Vanessa Cabulong, manager at Windmill Care Home, part of the Maria Mallaband Care Group, said: “We love having Joan with us here. She has lived a wonderful full life and still greets everyday with her trademark positivity - she is a joy to be around.

“We are all so excited to celebrate this incredible milestone with Joan and look forward to helping her enjoy a very happy 100th birthday.”

Windmill Care Centre is a purpose-built care home which specialises in the provision of the highest standards of nursing care, nursing dementia care and residential dementia care.