Thriving at 100 thanks to ‘ordinary life’

Janet Patterson celebrates her 100th birthday today (thursday) with son Alistair, his wife Jean (back left), along with granddaughters Colleen (centre) and Maria.
Janet Patterson celebrates her 100th birthday today (thursday) with son Alistair, his wife Jean (back left), along with granddaughters Colleen (centre) and Maria.

A JEDBURGH grandmother celebrates her 100th birthday today.

And among the family surrounding Mrs Janet Patterson will be granddaughter, Maria, returned from South Africa to celebrate with her grandmother.

The Common Riding baby born in Hawick in 1911 and now living at Milfield Gardens residential care home in Jedburgh said the secret to living to be 100 is to “lead an ordinary life”.

And she added: “If there was anything else I’d tell you!”

Her relatives told us also that the Teri neither drinks nor smokes and has an active interest in what is going on around her.

She had an early birthday surprise, too, on Tuesday when Hawick Cornet Michael Davidson, Lass Kirsteen Hill and other principals visited to wish Mrs Patterson many happy returns.

And the happy birthday girl joined in when her Hawick visitors sang Teribus.

Mrs Patterson’s son Alistair and his wife Jean, his daughters Colleen, all from Surrey, and Maria are in the Borders for four days and they expect Alistair’s cousins Betty Turner from Galashiels and Margaret Mabon from Hawick and friends to join them today to celebrate Mrs Patterson’s centenary.

Also expected are greetings from the Queen.

Mrs Patterson, who was a machinist at a Hawick hosiery company, married Alexander in 1933 and the couple moved to Jedburgh, living in Bountrees, where Alexander worked as a textile designer in Boyds Mill and in Sturrocks lawyers office (now Lindsays incorporating Turnbull Linsay & Sturrock).

Their son Alistair left the town in 1959, joining the British South African Police in Rhodesia where he remained, retiring as assistant commissioner in the CID after 25 years. He returned to Britain in 2006.

Mrs Patterson was a member of the womens guild for 50 years and a committed church goer, attending Jedburgh Old Parish. She also volunteered for many years for Age Concern

Alistair said: “She’s absolutely marvellous.”

His father Alexander died in 1985.