South Shields resident who was born in Zimbabwe and travelled the world marks 100th birthday surrounded by family and friends

A South Shields resident who was born in Zimbabwe and travelled the world has celebrated her 100th birthday surrounded by family and friends.

Lorna Hannan, who lives in Aldwych House, South Shields, celebrated her 100th birthday on Tuesday June 21, was joined by 27 members of her family for a meal at Italian restaurant Ristorante Bravi in South Shields.

The guest list included Lorna’s children, grandchildren, great grandchildren, nieces, and nephew, many of whom had flown in from across the globe including America, Australia, South Africa and Spain.

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From left Warren Blencoe, Lorna Hannan, Lorna’s daughter Lorna Blencoe and Karbon Homes’ Lindsey Porter

Lorna was born in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe as one of three children and as a young child was sent to boarding school in South Africa, at the age of seven.

In 1940 at the age of 18 she joined the RAF, where met her now husband Roy Hannan, who had just arrived at the training base from Liverpool and the pair were later married, having four children, Bev, Ed Lorna and Shirley.

Roy sadly passed away in 1996 after 55 years of marriage and in 2007, Lorna, who was living in South Africa at the time, decided to visit her daughter, also called Lorna, who had moved to South Shields and fell in love with the town.

Lorna then applied for a home and was offered a flat in Aldwych House and decided to go for it, making South Shields her new home in 2007.

Lorna has been a regular member of the Baptist Church, attending services and all their social functions and until recently loved baking, knitting and crochet.

Despite her eyesight deteriorating, Lorna is still a regular member of local church coffee mornings in the community.

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Mark Pears, team leader of Supported Housing at Karbon Homes, said: “I have known Lorna now for over 10 years as her housing officer and now as team leader. Lorna has been a fantastic resident, always attending communal activities in the lounge and joining us for every resident meeting.

“It goes without saying that I speak for the whole of the supported housing team in wishing her a happy 100 birthday and hope she enjoys catching up with family on the day.”