A care home surprised one of their oldest residents with a Shetland pony as part of their one-hundredth birthday celebrations.

Lilly Martin, who lives at Ashbrook Court care home in Waltham Abbey, was delighted to meet Amy the pony on her milestone birthday on Tuesday, November 5.

Known for her love of animals and lively personality, the care home team wanted to surprise Mrs Martin with something unforgettable at her party.

The centenarian was also presented with her birthday card from the Queen by Town Mayor Antony Watts while her niece, Carole Cairns and her husband Steve travelled from France for the big day.

Home manager, Claire O’Neill said: “It is such a pleasure to have Lilly with us here. She has a contagious smile and is such a joy to be around. We were delighted to be able to make her day so special”.

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Lilly Mitchell and her late husband Cyril.

Born in 1919 in Hackney, Mrs Martin worked as a machinist, sewing zips onto army uniforms where she met her husband Cyril whom she married in 1977.

It was only until a few month ago that the centenarian was still living independently before moving to Ashbrook Court.

Lilly’s top tip for longevity is: “Love and enjoy life – and play sport.”