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'Everybody who meets her, loves her': Dagenham woman celebrates 100th birthday

PUBLISHED: 07:00 11 September 2019 | UPDATED: 08:26 12 September 2019

Joan Self has celebrated her 100th birthday with family and friends at a church hall in Dagenham. Picture: Sylvia Baynes.

Joan Self has celebrated her 100th birthday with family and friends at a church hall in Dagenham. Picture: Sylvia Baynes.

Sylvia Baynes

A Dagenham woman has celebrated her 100th birthday surrounded by family and friends.

Joan Self received a card from the Queen and a letter from the secretary of state for work and pensions Amber Rudd to mark the occasion. Picture: via Debbie Winter.Joan Self received a card from the Queen and a letter from the secretary of state for work and pensions Amber Rudd to mark the occasion. Picture: via Debbie Winter.

Around 50 people from the community in Goresbrook Road turned out to mark the milestone with Joan Self on September 8 at St Martin's Church Hall.

"Everybody who meets her, loves her," said Joan's cousin, 80-year-old Sylvia Baynes. "She's so sweet and lovely and kind."

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"Joan doesn't have any children of her own, but she's been drawn into people's families. There were babies and toddlers, all ages really - Joan being the oldest."

She added: "It was a heart-warming event, because Joan was surrounded by lovely friends and the community."

Joan's husband, Reg Self, died around seven years ago. Sylvia said he and Joan were very much in love, and that he was a joker in the community. He loved to make people laugh.

When he died, Joan began to be more active in the neighbourhood.

Still living in her own home, Joan is helped by friends and neighbours with things like getting the shopping.

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