PEOPLE from Studley and further afield pulled together to give Haywood Lodge Care Home resident Ralph Heaven the ‘best day ever’ for his 100th birthday.
An appeal was launched for Ralph with people being invited to send him a birthday card for his century celebration – and the public obliged with him receiving 665 in total – more than six for every year of his life.
Haywood Lodge Caretaker Terry Whiston dressed up as the cruise ship captain to surprise Ralph and his family were all waiting in the dining hall to sing happy birthday as he entered the room.
The birthday boy had a three-course meal before being presented with his huge stack of birthday cards, including that all-important ‘new centenarian’ one from Her Majesty The Queen.
His former employer Harrods gave him a hamper and Ralph was paid a visit by Studley Councillor Adrian Smith and the Mappleborough Green Town Crier.
Later on the local Emma Charlotte’s Dance Academy performed some tap dancing for Ralph, and he also enjoyed an evening buffet with loved ones.
He said: “I’m absolutely overjoyed with all the cards, gifts and lovely messages.
“I especially loved the dancers who came to perform for me – meeting the children made me feel young again.”
Haywood Lodge regional director Ilze Careless added: “Ralph has become such a big part of our Haywood Lodge family; we couldn’t wait to give him a birthday he’ll never forget.’