Former Queniborough charity worker Rosemary celebrates her 100th birthday

Rosemary Handley on her 100th birthday.
Rosemary Handley on her 100th birthday.
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A woman who was made an MBE for her fund-raising work has celebrated her 100th birthday.

Rosemary Handley marked her centenary on Thursday with family and friends at The Lodge in Thurnby, where she now lives.

Rosemary raised money for the Loros hospice for more than 30 years, only retiring from her fund-raising efforts a few years ago.

She began supporting the hospice from the moment she put a charity tin on the counter of her village shop in Queniborough in 1980. Both her parents had died of cancer and she wanted to help raise funds to build the hospice.

That year, she held her first fund-raising garden party and has raised thousands of pounds for the charity ever since.

In 2004, she was recognised for her charity work with an MBE which she collected from the Queen at Buckingham Palace.

Rosemary ran her shop for more than 20 years, becoming a well-known local personality. She was a regular volunteer in the Loros shop in Syston and held fund-raising sales outside her home. Other events she organised included cake stalls, fashion shows and attic sales.

Rosemary has also been dedicated to her local church and has helped on numerous committees.

Rosemary said the secret to her long life is “doing a word puzzle every day and having a sherry before lunch”.

Rosemary’s niece Jane Mount said: “She keeps everybody on their toes at the home. She is a remarkable woman.”