A MUCH-LOVED grandma has celebrated her 100th birthday surrounded by loved ones.

Louisa Barbara Joan Jenkins, fondly known as JJ among her friends and family, celebrated her remarkable milestone on Sunday, February 25, at Shipton Bellinger Sports and Social Club.

The centenarian, born on February 25, 1924, in Shipton Bellinger, was one of 10 siblings - only she and her sister Esme, aged 97, remain.

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Andover Advertiser: Joan Jenkins cutting her 100th birthday cakeJoan Jenkins cutting her 100th birthday cake (Image: Contributed)

Growing up in a close-knit community, Joan attended the local school and later worked at the Hants & Wilts Laundry before becoming a beloved dinner lady at Shipton Primary School.

Joan's journey of love began when she met her late husband, John Jenkins, through her older brother Frank.

Their romance blossomed in Station Road Tidworth, where Frank worked as a baker, and John lodged above a shop.

They married on October 23, 1943, at St Peter's Church in Shipton Bellinger, and together they raised two daughters, Barbara and Teresa, followed by the joy of two grandsons, Jonathan and Richard.

Andover Advertiser: Joan with her family celebrating her 100th birthdayJoan with her family celebrating her 100th birthday (Image: Contributed)

Throughout her life, Joan cherished moments of joy, especially during holidays spent with family and friends, often remembering the adventures shared with her late brother and sister, Frank and Daisy.

Among her treasured memories was the Coronation of George VI and his wife, Elizabeth, in 1937, and her youthful triumph of securing third place in the girls' 100-yard flat race during the coronation sports day at the age of 13.

Reflecting on the secret to her longevity, Joan credited the love and companionship of two good men in her life: her late husband, John, and later, Roy Hiscock, a dear companion.

Andover Advertiser: JJ's 100th birthday cakeJJ's 100th birthday cake (Image: Contributed)

She attributed her robust health to the wholesome diet of fresh home-grown vegetables, meat from the local butcher, daily deliveries of milk and bread, and nowadays a nightly indulgence of a nip of brandy.

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Despite life's challenges, Joan expressed happiness, saying she wouldn't change a single moment.

Andover Advertiser: The birthday card she received from the KingThe birthday card she received from the King (Image: Contributed)

She said: "I've had a good and happy life, filled with cherished memories and the love of family and friends. Despite the challenges, I wouldn't change a thing. Here's to a century of laughter, love, and the simple pleasures that make life beautiful."

She continues to embrace life with good health, humour, and the occasional game of bingo or live entertainment at the Sports and Social Club.

Joan extended her heartfelt thanks to everyone who celebrated her special day, and expressed special gratitude for the thoughtful card received from the King, along with the abundance of cards, presents, and best wishes that filled her heart with joy.