A CENTENARIAN with a love of music and theatre celebrated a milestone birthday with a telegram from the Queen.
Evelyn Thompson, who is also known as Eva, celebrated her 100th birthday surrounded by her loving family and friends.
Evelyn, who lives in the Hart Lane area of Hartlepool, was born in Sunderland but has spent the past 75 years in town after marrying Irving Thompson, who was known as Bob and worked for the Hartlepool Mail.
Before moving to the town she had worked for a solicitor.
She is mother to renowned violinist Irving Thompson, 78, who lives near Ottawa, in Canada, and Christine Ascough, 59, who lives in Dalton Piercy, on the outskirts of Hartlepool.
Christine, who is married to Garry, 67, said: “She has kept young by being an active person and she has always been cheerful.
“When she was younger she loved dancing and was interested very much in music.
“My brother is a well-known professional violinist and she has always loved classical music and other styles.”
Evelyn, who has been a member of Grange Road Methodist Church for around 50 years, received a host of gifts, cards and flowers from her loving family and friends.
Christine added: “I’d like to say how lovely the Women’s Fellowship at the church, who sent gifts, have all been to my mother.”
Evelyn, whose maiden name was Ratcliffe, is grandmother to Irving Thompson junior, 50, Paul Thompson, 47, Alex Gatenby, 29 and Jonathan Gatenby, 27.
She is also great-grandmother to 16-month-old Oscar Gatenby, who helped to mark his great-grandmother’s big day at a party that was also attended by Oscar’s mum and Alex’s partner, Charlotte Kitching, and Jonathan’s partner, Joanna Thorne.