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Ton-up gran can't Adam and Eve it

PUBLISHED: 16:44 27 August 2008 | UPDATED: 15:14 25 August 2010

SURPRISE: Maude Box was overjoyed to be congratulated by Pearly King and Queen Johnny and Peggy Scott.

SURPRISE: Maude Box was overjoyed to be congratulated by Pearly King and Queen Johnny and Peggy Scott.

TRADITIONAL Cockneys have been celebrating the 100th birthday of a woman born in the heart of east London.

TRADITIONAL Cockneys have been celebrating the 100th birthday of a woman born in the heart of east London.

Maude Box, a resident of Wombwell Nursing home, Wombwell Gardens, Gravesend, was visited by the Pearly King and Queen of Tower Hamlets at her birthday celebrations last Friday.

Well known for their fundraising work and striking clothes that feature pearls on the seams, the Pearly Kings and Queens of London are a symbol of cockney London.

Mrs Box, who has seven grandchildren and nine great grandchildren, was born in Bethnal Green, East London in 1908.

Trying her hand at several jobs, she lived there until the 1950s when she moved to Kidbrooke, then Welling, and finally Dartford, before settling at the nursing home in December, last year.

Her son Ronald Box and daughter Angela Greenwood, 64, who now lives in Cumbria, attended the celebration along with other members of her family.

Mrs Greenwood, who hasn't seen her mother for more than 10 years, said: "I am very, very proud of my mum for reaching 100 years of age. She is having a wonderful time, and the home have done a fantastic job looking after her, and they have made it really special for her today."

Daughter-in-law Rene Box added: "She is fantastic. It is such a tribute to her to get the Pearly King and Queen here - it was a total surprise for her. I think she was quite nervous about today, but she is very pleased they have turned up and she is having a lovely time."

Jonny and Peggy Scott, the pearly King and Queen, congratulated Mrs Box and sang and danced at the event. She was presented with flowers and gifts from family members who also attended.

The Pearly Queen said: "We like to help everybody and we were invited to come down today to see Maude, we were more than happy - we knew it would brighten up their day.

"To see their faces makes it all worth it. Am I enjoying myself? I always do, I enjoy myself breathing!

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