Littlehampton lady's milestone birthday makes her one of the oldest people in Sussex

A lady from Littlehampton has celebrated a birthday that puts her in an elite group of centenarians in Sussex.

On Sunday, April 5, Irene Sleight celebrated her 106th birthday - and according to this database, there are only two West Sussex residents older than her.

Despite not being able to have visitors due to the coronavirus lockdown, Irene celebrated her momentous birthday with a cake and balloons at Gratwick House Rest Home in Norfolk Road, Littlehampton.

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Manager Lorraine Barclay said: "Irene is a lovely lady the staff absolutely adore her, she walks without support up and down the stairs, is fiercely independent and cares about everyone.

Irene Sleight has celebrated a milestone birthday

"She still loves to plait her hair and wear her lipstick, and she likes to help around the home."

According to Lorraine, Irene was born in Hull, the third youngest of 11 children and the only girl.

She left school at 14 and worked on the counter at Liptons grocery store, and got married in her early twenties.

Irene had one son who Lorraine said she 'cherished', but has sadly since passed away. She has outlived all her siblings and has one granddaughter.

Irene Sleight has celebrated a milestone birthday

Having previously lived in Rustington, Irene moved to the care home in 2015.

Lorraine said Irene had a 'fantastic sense of humour', adding: "Irene loves to go down to the beach in the nicer weather with staff for a coffee and cake.

"She truly is a remarkable lady and we all adore her."

Irene Sleight has celebrated a milestone birthday