106th birthday celebrations at Ferndown care home

6th August 2017

Residents and staff at Care South’s Fairlawn care home in Ferndown helped one of their residents mark a very special milestone birthday. Margaret Dowsing Hovell, better known as Peggy, celebrated her 106th birthday with family and friends and was delighted to receive a telegram from the Queen, as well as the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, the Rt Hon, David Gauke, MP.

Born in 1911 in Farnham Common, Buckinghamshire, Peggy was the second youngest of four siblings. At a young age she developed a talent and passion for playing the piano and performed in many recitals, one of the most memorable aspects of her childhood, along with the frequent camping holidays she enjoyed with her family.

Peggy worked as a secretary, before marrying John Herbert, a dental surgeon in 1937. They shared a passion for travel, moving to India together, where John worked for the Raj.

Peggy learned to drive in 1925, ten years before compulsory driving tests were introduced. Incredibly, Peggy opted to take her driving test in 2009, aged 98, having been a member of the league of experienced drivers for some 59 years!

When asked the secret to her long life, Peggy said it was important to live well and keep busy. She also praised the wonderful care she received at Fairlawn.

Peggy was visited on her special day by the Mayor of Ferndown, Councillor Cathy Lugg, as well as Simon Bird, Property Director and Deputy Chief Executive at Care South, who presented her with beautiful bouquets of flowers.

Peggy was also joined by her son, Richard, and daughter-in-law, Gillian, who took her out for a celebratory lunch at Haskins, the local garden centre, where she also enjoyed looking at all the beautiful flowers on display. Back at the home, staff and residents gathered to sing ‘Happy Birthday’ and presented Peggy with a delicious cake, baked by the Home’s chef.

Peggy has been a resident at Fairlawn for four years, joining the home in 2013. She enjoys reciting her favourite poetry to staff and fellow residents, as well as taking part in the Oomph! exercise sessions that are run at the home.

Karen Curtis, Home Manager at Care South’s Fairlawn care home, added: “Peggy is a very special lady, who loves dancing, recently stealing the limelight at a tea dance some of our residents attended. We were delighted to help her celebrate her big day.”