A much-loved great-great-grandmother enjoyed a “beautiful” 100th birthday as two sets of five generations joined in the celebrations.
Sarah Jane Holst, who has lived in Seaham all of her life, was showered with love as a party was held to mark the major milestone.
It took place at Stockton Lodge Nursing Home, on Stockton Road, Seaham, where she is a resident.
Sarah Jane – nicknamed Jennie – is a mum-of-three, while she has eight grandchildren, 13 great-grandchildren and three great-great-grandchildren.
Many of them were at the nursing home to celebrate Sarah Jane’s big day.
The excitement started when she received a telegram from the Queen, before the birthday bash was held in the afternoon.
The day was fantastic. All of the family were there, and it was beautifulLesley Atkinson
Her granddaughter, Lesley Atkinson, said: “The day was fantastic. All of the family were there, and it was beautiful.
“My nana was over the moon to receive the telegram, as the whole family was. The card is beautiful.
“She really enjoyed the day, and had been up from the early hours waiting for her telegram.
“All of the staff at the home were fantastic as well, and it was just a lovely day.”
Sarah Jane used to be a cook in a nursing home during her working days, while she also had a spell at a clothing factory.
Even as she passed into her 70s, Sarah Jane and her late friend Clara Bolton would wallpaper in homes in Seaham.
Among her biggest hobbies over the years have been bingo and knitting, while her family has always been very close.
The family ranges from Sarah Jane’s children Audrey, George and Moira, through to her great-great-grandchildren: Alex, 10, Matthew, two, and Joshua, six months.
Another great-great-granddaughter, Abby, tragically died at the age of six-and-a-half.
Lesley added: “We have two sets of five generations in the family, so we’re a very big group, and we all look out for each other. Everybody is very close.
“It was fantastic to bring everyone together for such a special occasion.”
Sarah Jane married her husband of 54 years Jack when she was just 16, and he passed away aged 73.