Lady Mary celebrates 102nd birthdayEx tree surgeon, Mary Fowler, a Resident at HC-One’s Balfarg Care Home in Balfarg, celebrated her 102nd birthday with her family, friends and fellow Residents. 

Mary was born in the midst of World War I on 16th September 1916, the eldest of four sisters with an older brother. Her father was a boson in the Navy, originally from Newcastle whilst her mother was from Kirkcaldy. 

Her first job was working in a newspaper shop in Leslie, before taking a job in the mills to enable her mother to get a mill house for the family after her father sadly passed away. 

She met her husband at Kinglassie Dancing and her first impression of him was that he was “a bit of a show-off but he was very good looking, and a great dancer”, before marrying him and moving to Cardenden where he was a miner. 

It was a struggling community and her neighbours called her ‘Lady Mary’ as she owned two coats. She was also the only household in the area to own a chest of drawers, so when a local woman was pregnant, she would borrow the chest of drawers to put the baby in when it was born.

Mary moved to Kent in 1943 as part of the war effort where her husband was sent to work in the mines. Whilst in Kent, she went back to work and trained as a tree surgeon. 

To mark the special day, Balfarg hosted a party for Mary, with a piper kicking off the event by playing to Mary in the garden. Corks were popping in the decorated lounge as everyone enjoyed a glass of bubbly with entertainment by crooner, Jack High. Mary and her guests were treated to ice-cream cones before dancing the afternoon away.

Balfarg’s new chef, Anne-Marie Marshall pulled out all of the stops with a cake for Mary and the team at Balfarg presented her with a beautiful bunch of flowers. 

When asked what her secret to a long life is, Mary commented:

“Keep breathing, have a positive attitude no matter what life throws at you and laugh at your mistakes!”

Sylvia and Lesley, Mary’s daughters commented:

“Thank you so much for helping us to throw such a great part for mum’s 102nd birthday.

Everyone had such a great time and thank you for the beautiful flowers, mum was thrilled to bits.”

Balfarg’s Home Manager, Sharon Watson commented:

“Myself and the rest of the team at Balfarg are honoured and privileged that Mary chose to hold her 102nd birthday party here in the care home with her family and friends.

She feels Balfarg is her home, which is what we strive to make all of our Residents feel.”