Cecily’s century is packed with drama

Cecily Ketcher, who turned 100 earlier this month
Cecily Ketcher, who turned 100 earlier this month

A ‘FEISTY’ woman was the centre of attention at a care home in Rustington as she celebrated her 100th birthday.

Cecily Ketcher celebrated reaching her triple-figure milestone at the Fairlight Nursing Home, in Worthing Road, earlier this month.

Cecily held a party to mark the day with her son Michael and his wife, as well as friends and staff from the nursing home all in attendance.

Michael, who lives in the village, said the day was a great occasion.

Speaking of his mother, he said: “She is inspirational. She has had a difficult life at times and she has come back from a lot of adversity and illness but it’s never stopped her.”

Cecily was born on March 11, 1915, in Brixton, London.

She was born at a tumultuous time in Britain’s history – and for her family, with her father off fighting on the Western Front in the First World War, in the battle of the Mons.

“Her middle name is actually Mons,” explained Michael. “She didn’t actually get to meet her father until she was three, when the war finished.”

After the war, with the family finally reunited, a young Cecily moved to Whitton, in Middlesex.

In her adult life, Cecily became a ‘clippie’ on the London buses during the Second World War, when the Luftwaffe were conducting heavy bombing raids on the capital.

After the conflict, she married her husband Cyril Stanley Ketcher.

Cecily worked as a dressmaker and seamstress in Croydon.

In 1951 their son, Michael, was born.

Michael said: “She was a person who liked to keep busy and she was never one to just sit down and do nothing. She was a bit feisty – in fact, she still is pretty feisty.”

Cecily continued to work making school uniforms and dressmaking for her family up until her retirement.

After her husband died, Cecily moved to the seafront in Worthing where she stayed until moving into Fairlight, in 2008.

The Queen sent a card to mark Cecily’s birthday.