GREETINGS from the Queen, a visit by her son from Australia and congratulations from Poole’s mayor – it could only add up to a very special birthday for Ellie Guest.

She celebrated her 100th birthday with a party for family and friends in the garden of the Marlborough House nursing home in Parkstone where she has been looked after since falling and breaking a leg six weeks ago.

Before that she lived at home at Wallisdown where she has resided since coming to the area at the age of 37.

Her husband Harold, to whom she was married for around 54 years, died around 25 years ago.

“She’s a very straightforward and honest type of person,” said son John, who lives in Sydney. “That’s the sort of quality she embeds in other people too.

“Everybody loves her,” he said. “Nobody has a bad word to say about her because there’s not a bad word to say.”

Born in the village of East Knoyle in Wiltshire, she loves wildlife, particularly birds, which she fed at her home. “She has an affinity with animals, birds especially,” said John. “She’s the bird lady of Wallisdown.”

From a “huge family” of eight children, she is not the first centenarian, her sister Alice lived until she was 102.

Eleanor, known as Ellie, worked as a tea lady at an electronics company in Wallisdown and as housekeeper for a wealthy family. Teetotal all her life, she was also vegetarian until recently.

Poole Mayor, Cllr Peter Adams, who presented her with a basket of flowers and a card said: “One of the real pleasures of being mayor is meeting people like this.

“They have done so much for the generations and they lived through such difficult times.”