ONE of Wiltshire's oldest residents has just celebrated her 106th birthday with her family and friends.

Gertie Tippetts was the VIP guest at a small party held on Tuesday (January 18) for family, friends and residents at the Ridgeway care home in Royal Wootton Bassett.

Her grand-daughter Victoria said: "Due to a Covid outbreak at the home only myself, my husband David and her son-in-law Jack were allowed to visit as we are essential caregivers.

"The visiting rules are really tricky at the moment so no mayoral visit unfortunately. She was allowed out to the lounge on her floor and met with a few residents for a small party."

Many of the great-great grandmother's family live in the local area. She has five children (three of whom are still living), 15 grandchildren, 24 great-grandchildren and three great-great-grandchildren.

The sprightly 106-year-old was born on January 18 1916 in Avebury as the youngest of six children. Mrs Tippetts never met her father William Fishlock as he was killed in Turkey during the First World War.

Taken from her mother at the age of three because she was bedridden with paralysis, Mrs Tippetts went to live with her aunt and uncle on a small farm, along with three of her siblings and cousins.

She has since lived in Winterbourne Monkton, Clench Common, Yatesbury, Marlborough and in Royal Wootton Bassett since 1998.

She went to the Cadley National School in Marlborough and worked in service before she started her family with her husband Albion Tippetts, whom she met at Marlborough Fair and married on December 9, 1936. Mr Tippetts died in 1987.

Mrs Tippetts ran the post office in Winterbourne Monkton while her husband was serving during the Second World War and later at Yatesbury Camp.

After her family had grown up she then worked at Marlborough College until 1986 when she retired aged 70. Mrs Tippetts likes to knit and has a project on the go at the moment.

Victoria said: "She always reads the newspapers and keeps up-to-date with the news and current affairs.

"She loves anything to do with the Royal family and is so excited that she's received yet another birthday card from the Queen!

"She also loves sport of any kind and enjoys watching the football and bingo."

Nowadays, she still gets involved with activities going on at the home.