Former spy, 109, may be oldest recipient of Covid-19 vaccine

English women's cricketer Eileen Ash, now 108, with the bat signed for her by Sir Don Bradman on New

English women's cricketer Eileen Ash, now 108, with the bat signed for her by Sir Don Bradman on New Year's Day in 1949. Photo: Bill Smith - Credit: Archant © 2013

A 109-year-old former spy and international woman's cricketer will this week become possibly the oldest person to receive her second dose of the Covid-19 vaccine.

On Tuesday, Eileen Ash from Norwich will receive her second dose of the Pfizer vaccine, having been given her first jab at the Norfolk and Norwich Hospital on December 22.

It will see her number among the oldest people in the world to have received both doses of the vaccine, and one of at least two people over the age of 100 to have been given them in Norfolk.

Ms Ash, who is the oldest living international cricketer in the world, represented England for the first time in June 1937.

Her son, Chris Ash, said: "She lived through the Spanish Flu crisis as a child and is almost never ill. To us, she's probably the one person most unlikely to get it [coronavirus].


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"I can obviously understand why she has got it [the vaccine] and is just as entitled to it as anyone else.

"It does make me cross when people suggest older people shouldn't be prioritised - their generation lived through wartime and made sacrifices for us all so it is the least they deserve."

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Ms Ash is believed to be the oldest living person in Norfolk and was seconded to MI6 during the Second World War. 

In 2011, she became the first female Test cricketer to reach her 100th birthday and passed her driving test at the age of 105.

Mr Ash added: "She was absolutely fine after having her jab."

On Friday, Violet Denton, who lives in Ormesby, became another centenarian to be given her injection. 

Violet Denton receives covid jab

Violet Denton, 104, yesterday became the oldest person in Norfolk to be vaccinated - Credit: Wanda Sandell

In her first day out of the house since March last year, Ms Denton visited The Park Surgery in Great Yarmouth to receive her first dose of the same vaccine.

The 104-year-old, originally from Birmingham, admitted she felt apprehensive but afterwards said she would "do it all again tomorrow".

She said: "People shouldn't be worried; there's nothing to be afraid of. There was nothing in it at all.

"Everyone should get the vaccine - it's about protecting us all."

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