PATIENTS at Basildon Hospital were invited to a tea party this morning to celebrate the 100th birthday of Dame Vera Lynn.
Staff joined ’older patients’ on the hospital’s Kingswood Ward for the 1940s-themed event.
Dame Vera was known as the forces’ sweetheart during the Second World War, when she travelled around the world performing for the troops.
Event co-ordinator Debbie Hewitt recorded the patients’ memories of Dame Vera and plans to send them to the singer.
She said: “Activities like this improve the wellbeing of our patients and are a welcome distraction from the hospital routine.
“Celebrating Dame Vera’s birthday is the perfect opportunity to let everyone share memories and have some fun.”
Patient Audrey Cresswell, who was born in 1931 and grew up in Tilbury, attended the event.
She said: “I remember hundreds of German planes flying over on a lovely, sunny day, and my mum pushing us three kids and the dog into the shelter and putting a mattress over us.
“Our house was damaged by a blast and for a while we went to live with relatives in the north of England.
“We all loved Vera Lynn. My dad collected all her records.”