A RETIRED nurse from Canada who has spent many years of her life in Bromsgrove celebrated her 100th birthday at the weekend.

On Saturday, Mrs Grace Cooper had a big party attended by friends and family and a cake topped with 100 candles.

The resident at Burcot Grange, Bromsgrove, ran out of space to put the 84 birthday cards she received.

Her actual birthday was on Monday, July 21 but she decided to wait until the weekend to make sure her guest would be available to attend.

Born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, the centenarian came to England when she was 16 after her parents decided to move for financial reasons.

She said: “I didn’t really want to live here. I got used to it eventually I did find it hard to make friends in that time. I think it would be easier now as people travel a lot more nowadays.

“They did not seem to welcome strange people who came into their country. I am sure they would be more welcoming now.

“I learnt a lot about Canada after I retired because I had more time to travel.”

At the age of 19 she started her nursing career at Hampstead General Hospital, London, she went on to work at various hospitals learning midwifery and orthopaedics before finishing her career at the cottage hospital in Bromsgrove as a Matron.

The retired nurse, who completed her training just before the start of the Second World War, added: “had a very busy time during the war but that is a long story.”

Mrs Cooper became a stepmother to three daughters and one son when she married Reverend LJ Cooper in 1970 at Bromsgrove Baptist Church in New Road.

After four years of marriage she retired from nursing at the age of 60.