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Maud scores a century

PUBLISHED: 10:55 09 November 2001 | UPDATED: 10:49 03 March 2010

AN Ipswich great grandmother with a head for heights has celebrated her 100th birthday.

In the week Concorde soared back into the sky it brought back special memories to centenarian Maud Gaskin, who travelled on the supersonic plane as a birthday treat 14 years ago.

AN Ipswich great grandmother with a head for heights has celebrated her 100th birthday.

In the week Concorde soared back into the sky it brought back special memories to centenarian Maud Gaskin, who travelled on the supersonic plane as a birthday treat 14 years ago.

"It was a real treat," said the sprightly 100-year-old special birthday celebration at the Prince of Wales Residential Home in Prince of Wales Drive.

"We were served champagne and caviar, but I didn't like the caviar. I don't like fish and someone told me it was fish eggs."

Mother-of-five Mrs Gaskin has always been reaching for the top since she was a teenager in her home village of Banham in Norfolk.

When she was 14, she clambered up the village church tower – much to the displeasure of the parson. "The vicar gave me a real ticking off," she said.

The housewife who lived in Clarence Road, Ipswich, for more than 60 years, before moving to her current home said she satisfied her taste for heights with a trip in a helicopter and a light aeroplane taking off from Ipswich Airport at the grand old age of 82.

Three of her sons where there with their families to help celebrate her special day. Derek Gaskin, 73, put his mum's long life down to hard grind. "She is a hard worker and we always had plain food – there was never anything fancy."

Mrs Gaskin was married in 1927 to Alf a workshop foreman with Ipswich based British Road Surfaces after moving from her childhood home of Kenninghall.

Today she has seven great grandchildren.

Poignantly one of Mrs Gaskin's earliest memories was seeing her brother going off to war during First World War. He was killed a week before the armistice was signed in 1918and the Gaskin family only learnt of his final resting-place last year.

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