IT WAS cake and candles time for bright-as-a-button Alice Horne when she celebrated her 101st birthday at her Oswaldtwistle home.
Alice, who was awarded the Freedom of the Borough in 2005, recei-ved a visit from the Mayor and Mayoress of Hyndburn, Councillor Tony Dobson and his wife Trish, and council leader Peter Britcliffe who presented her with flowers.
She said: "I have had a lot of lovely flowers and cards. People keep saying to me that I don’t look 101 but I always ask them what they expect me to be like. I have enjoyed seeing everyone and I’m still able to get around.
"The other day when I went for a hospital appointment, one of the doctors said he was going to have a look at me to see what makes me tick after all these years."
Alice’s charity work began early in life following a visit to a workhouse, when she was so touched by the plight of the inhabitants that she started making clothes and baking food for the poor.
In 2005, she met a former childhood resident of the workhouse, who said she remembered spinster Alice as the first person who ever gave her a hug or showed her any kindness.
During the Second World War, she was billeted in Liverpool where she worked in a Spitfire plant and ended up buried under the rubble of a matchstick factory for nine-and-a-half hours after the building near Lime Street Station was bombed.
An accident when she was 50 left Alice confined to a wheelchair but she didn’t let it stop her, learning to swim at 70 and doing many sponsored swims over the years.
She has been involved with the Disabled Assoc-iation for Sport in Hynd-burn for more than 35 years, taking part in bowling, javelin and darts events, and in 1986 she was even named Britain’s Most Active Pensioner.
Councillor Britcliffe said: "Alice is as bright and lively as ever and we were delighted that we could be with her on her birthday. She continues to be actively involved in the community.
"She is a tremendous lady and we gave her our best wishes on her special day."