A LOVING family is the key to long life according to one Oswestry resident, who celebrated her 100th birthday at the weekend.

Eithwen Phillips, or Sally to those who know her, reached a century on Saturday, October 5 and was joined by friends and family to celebrate.

Born in Dulwich, South London in 1919, Eithwen has two sons, seven grandchildren, two step-grandchildren, seven great-grandchildren, and three step-great-grandchildren, plenty of which came to visit her at her residence at the New Fairholm care home in Oswestry.

Eithwen lived in Geneva in Switzerland, as a young girl where she spoke fluent French, before returning to Dulwich at the age of eight.

During the Second World War she worked at The Prudential and was regularly on duty as an air raid warden.

She married her long-standing RAF fiancé, Arthur, during the air raids, so they married in the crypt of the church.

After the war they moved to Newcastle-Upon-Tyne where Arthur was the manager of an SPCK Book Shop.

While living here they had their two sons, David and Malcolm.

Throughout her life Eithwen has been very involved in a number of roles in the Church of England. She has also often been involved in amateur dramatics, and has always been very sociable.

She has always been a dog lover and her family life has included many much loved dogs.

Eithwen and her family moved to the Midlands in the early 1950s and then to Surrey in the mid 1950s.

She worked as a PA in a hospital in Surrey and later, as a freelance agent in the book trade in London with Arthur, until they both retired.

They moved to Lelant in Cornwall in the early 1990s and then to Shrewsbury in 2007 where Arthur sadly died later that year.

Eithwen has lived at New Fairholme since November 2015 and says she is very happy there.

"What a wonderful birthday," said Eithwen. "I've had a lovely lunch with my family. Thank you all for being here."

And when asked of her secret to living until 100, Eithwen said it was from "lots of love from family."