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Police horse surprise for Vera on her 104th birthday

PUBLISHED: 12:20 09 June 2020 | UPDATED: 12:40 09 June 2020

Vera Nobbs is greeted by Norfolk POlice mounted officers on horseback to mark her 104th birthday. Picture: Healthcare Homes

Vera Nobbs is greeted by Norfolk POlice mounted officers on horseback to mark her 104th birthday. Picture: Healthcare Homes

Healthcare Homes

The 104th birthday celebration of a Norfolk woman saw her receive a special visit from mounted officers from Norfolk police.

Vera Nobbs blows out the candle on her cake marking her 104th birthday. Picture: Healthcare HomesVera Nobbs blows out the candle on her cake marking her 104th birthday. Picture: Healthcare Homes

As someone who has always loved horses, Vera Nobbs, who lives at Olive House in Newton Flotman, was thrilled by the surprise, socially-distanced, visit from officers on horseback.

Her birthday on June 5 was also marked by immediate neighbours congregating around the care home to sing ‘Happy Birthday’, followed by a special performance from a Frank Sinatra tribute entertainer who sang for Vera from the gardens.

Vera also received a delicious cake made up of the numbers 104 and with orange icing – her favourite.

Vera Nobbs, 104,  listening to neighbours in Newton Flotman sing happy birthday. Picture: Healthcare HomesVera Nobbs, 104, listening to neighbours in Newton Flotman sing happy birthday. Picture: Healthcare Homes

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Vera was born in 1916 in Norwich and spent most of her life in Hellesdon.

She worked in retail for companies such as Dixons and also owned her own shop for a while. She has always enjoyed her beloved hobby of crochet.

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For many years she crocheted items for charities, including the Blind Association, and made shawls for hospitals in India who would give these to new mothers.

She moved into Olive House in late 2016 and is visited regularly by her daughter and grandson to whom she is very close.

When asked what the secret is to a long, happy life, Vera said: “My daughter, who is the apple of my eye, a good husband and a quiet, calm life.”

Adina Marginean, manager of Olive House, said: “We wanted to make Vera’s 104th birthday as special as possible and so arranged a number of surprises.

“It was really lovely to see Vera’s reaction when Norfolk’s mounted police arrived at the front of the home – she wasn’t expecting horses to arrive for her birthday!

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“It was moving to have our neighbours gather to sing ‘Happy Birthday’ to Vera – the community really have been very supportive.

“Social distancing was observed at all times, making it probably one of Vera’s more unusual birthdays, however it was very clear that she loved the treats that were arranged for her. “Everyone at Olive House is very fond of Vera and it was marvellous to see her enjoying her day.”

Vera’s day also included an interview on BBC Radio Norfolk, who were keen to hear about her life, achievements and memories.


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