Manor Park man celebrates 100th birthday in style

Ernest Fenn shows off the birthday card he received from the Queen to mark his 100th birthday.

Ernest Fenn shows off the birthday card he received from the Queen to mark his 100th birthday. - Credit: Archant

A centenarian said his 100th birthday party on Friday was such good fun that he’s planning an even bigger and better bash for his 105th.

Ernest Fenn, who has lived in Newham for more than 60 years, received 98 cards and 70 guests in person wishing him many happy returns - and he described the day as “one of the happiest of my life”.

Mr Fenn, of Browning Road, Manor Park, said: “It was wonderful to see so many friends, some of whom came considerable distances to see me, and to have my family with me. With the decorations and the amount of friends who came it was like a fairytale.”

The only thing that would have made the party perfect was if his “darling wife” Ivy, who passed away in October after 74 years of marriage, had been there, he said.

The retired shopkeeper, who ran Fenn’s Typewriter Services in High Street North for “donkey’s years” and served as church warden of St Barnabas Church in Browning Road, was also delighted to receive a telegram from the Queen.

When the Recorder asked the secret to Mr Fenn’s longevity, he said: “I don’t smoke or drink - I think it’s probably working hard and taking an interest in life in general and in the wonderful people you meet throughout your life and doing what you can to help others.”

Mr Fenn’s sons, Peter, 63, and Colin, 54, were among the guests tucking into cake at the celebration.

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Peter, his wife Evie, and his two step-daughters live in America but flew back to London for the celebration.

Colin, who has two sons, said he was pleased his dad had such a “fantastic time” at the party, and added: “He told me his next big day will be his 105th birthday - and I think he’ll expect an even bigger party then!”