Page last updated at 16:33 GMT, Friday, 1 January 2010

Great great grandmother turns 110

Ellen Watson
Ellen Watson saw the blaze in the Crystal Palace in 1936

A woman who was born during the reign of Queen Victoria and outlived five monarchs has turned 110.

Ellen Watson, a great great grandmother, celebrated her birthday with family and friends at Anchor Homes' Meadowside in Staines, Surrey.

Mrs Watson, who was born in Croydon but moved to Staines in 1959, witnessed the Crystal Palace fire.

Celebrating her birthday on New Year's Day she credited her longevity to laughter and a healthy lifestyle.

I've always eaten healthy food, but the most important thing is laughter and having a good sense of humour
Ellen Watson

Mrs Watson moved to Staines with her second husband Samuel and daughter Audrey and her husband.

Mr Watson died days after the couple celebrated their golden anniversary in 1974.

More than 20 years later Mrs Watson moved into the care home.

The soon to be great great great grandmother has witnessed many events, including seeing a Zeppelin fly over her home during World War I and the fire at the Crystal Palace in 1936.

Mrs Watson said: "I've never smoked and rarely drunk alcohol apart from a sherry at Christmas and birthdays.

"I've always eaten healthy food but the most important thing is laughter and having a good sense of humour."

Print Sponsor

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Sign in

BBC navigation

Copyright © 2020 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific