• Samantha Humble, Head of Operations at Gentoo Group, Gentoo tenant, Mrs Mary Murray and Andrew Routledge, Neighbourhood Co-ordinator for Gentoo

Gentoo Tenant Celebrates 100th Birthday

Mrs Mary Murray, a resident of Rainton Bridge had a bumper Bank Holiday yesterday (27 May 2019) when she celebrated her 100th Birthday. 

Mary has lived happily in her Gentoo home for over 43 years. Mary said: “I love living in my home. I have fantastic neighbours who bake for me and they keep my garden looking beautiful. I wouldn’t want to live anywhere else. I love to stay at home and I still like popping the hoover on and doing a little bit housework.”

Mary worked in London during World War II as a domestic looking after Batchelor flats. Mary said:” I met my husband Dave in London. He was in the Airforce Police and patrolled our area to ensure all curtains were closed. He asked me on a date and we were engaged eight days later! My engagement ring needed altering and when he went back to collect it, the shop had been bombed, so he had to look for a replacement. 

“After the wedding, we returned to the North East and we opened an off-license attached to a grocery shop and bakery so we were kept busy. It was aptly called Jock’s Shop as Dave is Scottish and we ran it for over 30 years.” 

Mary’s family and friends held an open house yesterday for friends and family to call by to wish her well and her two daughters, three granddaughters, six great granddaughters and two great grandsons were all delighted to help Mary with her celebrations. 

Mary received a special Birthday card from the Queen and was presented with a beautiful bouquet of flowers from Samantha Humble, Head of Operations at Gentoo Group. Samantha asked her what her secret was for a long and happy life. Mary said: "I have a spoonful of honey on my cereal every day and I don’t drink or smoke. I gave up drinking at 92 though!”

Samantha said: “It was an absolute honour to spend some time with Mary today. It is such a fabulous achievement, and I am thrilled to be part of such a special celebration. Mary is a delight and she truly is an inspirational lady. On behalf of Gentoo, I would like to wish her many happy returns.”