No drink or cigarettes have paid dividends for the borough’s latest 100-year-old.
Stripping out three ton lorries during the Second World War, Ivy Hunt looked back on her life as she brought up the century earlier this month.
Not mincing her words, the humble Mrs Hunt jokingly remarked that the paper “shouldn’t have wasted its time” reporting her 100th birthday, but secretly she enjoyed the attention.
Originally from Russell Square, in central London, Mrs Hunt moved to Chailey Avenue, in Enfield, in 1946 with her husband, where they lived in the backroom of her mother-in-laws.
She said: “My husband’s mother never liked me when we moved in there. I think it was because I didn’t smoke or drink, it never interested me.
“I certainly wouldn’t have made it to this stage if I had done.”
Working as an insurance clerk, Mrs Hunt was drafted in to strip out lorries as part of the war effort in 1939.
She said: “I worked in Euston Road but then they called me up when I was 27 to get rid of Hitler and I did, well, sort of.
“I stripped out lorries for a lovely wage of ten pence an hour and a ha’penny if I got an engine out the bonnet. We worked nonstop and never took shelter when the bombers were up ahead, we didn’t notice them.
When asked about family life, she said: “My son Gordon is lovely boy and he visits as often as he can, he means everything to me.”
Mrs Hunt has been a resident at Bullsmoor care home since 2009 and said: “I don’t hold my horses with these things, I am doing well but my eyesight is not the best and my legs are going but I keep going.”
Angela Dickson, manager at the care home, said: “She is a very dry sense of humour and loves to speak to people.
“She is a great character and loves her son to bits. She is very private but she also loves banter between people that she meets such as the staff or her family.
“We are all very proud of her, she will always share things with everyone else, but I think she loves the attention when it’s on her.”