100 not out for active Hartlepool centenarian dubbed 'Hurricane' by her family

Age has certainly never held back 100-year-old Hilda Maguire – whose energy has earned her the nickname “Hurricane Hilda”.

Friday, 10th December 2021, 9:44 am
Hilda Maguire on her 100th birthday with, standing left to right, son-in-law Alan Harris, son Brian Maguire and son-in-law Brian Peacock. Front, left to right, daughters Evelyn Harris, Irene Maguire and Sylvia Maguire. Picture and caption by FRANK REID

The active centenarian from Hartlepool has travelled the world, passed a diploma in Spanish when well into her 90s, loves singing and writes poetry.

She celebrated her milestone with lunch with her family at the Duke of Cleveland pub, on the Headland, which holds many special memories for the family.

It used to belong to relatives of Hilda when it was The Conservative Club and it is where Hilda helped out when she was a young woman.

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Hilda Maguire with a card from the Queen as she celebrates her 100th birthday. Picture by FRANK REID

Her daughter, Evelyn Harris, who lives in Spain with her sister, Irene Maguire, said: “It’s got a lot of history for us all and is somewhere mam loves to go to when we are home.”

Hilda was born Hilda Neish in Hartlepool on December 9, 1921. Her relatives all hailed from the Headland.

She was married to power station worker John Maguire, who passed away in the mid 1980s.

Together they had four children: Irene, 61, Evelyn, 63, Sylvia Maguire, 64, and Brian, 68.

Hilda Maguire as a young woman.

During the Second World War, Hilda made searchlights for our Russian allies.

After having a family, she worked nights at Hartlepool’s Siemens factory.

While in her middle age, Hilda went back to school and passed her O-Levels.

Evelyn said: “She got better grades than all of us!”

She has also learned sign language, joined a mime group and contributed to local history books with a group called The Writers Circle.

Hilda has travelled the globe including Hong Kong, Paris and South Africa, and until recent years often visited her daughters in Spain where she has many friends.

Her family gave her the nickname hurricane after she got up on the dance floor with her walker at a party in Spain.

Evelyn said: “That just sums her up.

"She has got a really strong character and a wonderful sense of humour.”

Hilda, who keeps her mind sharp with puzzle books, became a grandmother for the first time aged 93 when Brian had twin boys Michael and Alex.

Her family are also throwing her a big party with entertainment at the weekend.

She said the secret to a long life was: “Eat well, sleep well, have lots of friends and a good social life.”

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