UK’s oldest woman dies aged 112

Enfield's super-centenarian and the UK's oldest woman has died aged 112.

Judy Ingamells who was born on January 12, 1894 died at Chase Farm Hospital on March 1, after a life spanning three centuries.

For the past six years, Mrs Ingamells had resided at Springview Retirement Home in Crescent Road, Enfield, where she recently celebrated her 112th birthday with family and friends.

She will be best remembered for her forthright attitude on life.

At her birthday celebrations, she told the Independent: "I just go sailing on. You've had it, you've enjoyed it, you've finished with it, and then you move on."

Born in Maidenhead, Mrs Ingamells trained as a milliner and moved to Covent Garden when she married Percy, a wholesale florist. The couple had three daughters.

The outbreak of World War II led the family to relocate to Enfield in 1939, but nowhere was completely safe, and Mrs Ingamells recalled taking cover in a shelter as a bomb landed in her back garden.

After the war, Mrs Ingamells moved to Surrey to be with her daughters, returning to Enfield in 1990.

Mrs Ingamells was crowned the oldest woman in the UK in December 2005, following the death of 113-year-old Lucy D'Abreu, of Stirling, Scotland.

On her 112th birthday, Mrs Ingamells was serenaded by a Pearly King singer, but wartime hits were not on the repertoire.

She said at the time: "I don't like war songs. Who wants to remember something as horrible as the war?"

During her lifetime, Mrs Ingamells had seen 21 prime ministers come to power, six monarchs and two world wars.

Granddaughter Lynda said: "Nana claimed not to know the secret to her long life, but she always believed in looking to the future, rather than dwelling on the past.

"She also maintained a good sense of humour and was a great help. Anyone who knew her would bear this out.

"Nana was a great believer in the art of gentle exercise and luckily never suffered from arthritis or rheumatism.

"She had a healthy, varied diet, invariably finishing with a good helping of ice cream. As her mother was a Devonian, we suspect this may have had something to do with it.

"Nana will be sorely missed by friends and family. She was a truly inspirational lady."

Mrs Ingamells leaves two daughters, five grandchildren, four great grandchildren and two great, great grandchildren.

A private cremation will take place in Enfield today.

It is estimated there are just over 60 super-centenarians in the world today, an accolade awarded to those aged 110 and over.

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