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06th Jun 2023

108-year-old woman says secret to long life is to have dogs and not children

Steve Hopkins

She has no children or grandchildren

A 108-year-old woman has revealed some rather surprising advice on how to life a long life.

Ada Daniel says the secret to longevity is to raise dogs instead of children.

Ada “had a lot of greyhounds” in her younger days.

The centenarian was surprised with nearly 300 cards to celebrate her birthday after Codnor Park Care Home, in Codnor, Derbyshire, sent out an appeal. They had hoped to receive 108.

Ada also had an afternoon tea celebration with, balloons, banners, cakes and flowers.

Kelly Goucher, the activity coordinator at Ashmere, which runs the home, told the BBC: “Ada hasn’t got a lot of family left.

“She never had any children so she doesn’t have any grandchildren so we just wanted to get her as many cards as possible. She quite likes the fact that people know about her because of her age.”

Goucher launched an appeal on a local Facebook page and was overwhelmed by the amount of people that wanted to pass on birthday wishes to Ada, saying: “I woke up to 135 messages the following morning of people wanting to send cards.”

The care home launched a similar appeal to mark Ada’s 105th birthday – which happened to fall during lockdown – and received more than 200.

Goucher told the BBC that she had once asked Ada what her “secret was” and she was told “it was to have dogs, not kids”.

She added: “She’s definitely a character.

Goucher added to Derbyshire Times that Ada was particularly excited about this birthday:”She’s literally been on about her birthday since April and she’s been on countdown to the big day.

“We didn’t tell her we had made the appeal and the amount of messages we got was just through the roof. We’ve also had a lot of donations – so people have given us banners with her picture on and balloons with her name on.”

Ada, who is the 65th-oldest person in the UK according to the website Oldest in Britain, was born in the nearby village of Ambergate in 1915 and worked at Belper Mill for 27 years.

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