February 5, 2023

Peggy’s 105th Birthday

The Royal British Legion, Kyrenia Branch, can boast they have the oldest member with Peggy MacAlpine who has reached the remarkable age of 105 and RBL arranged a gathering of friends, family and members to celebrate this occasion at the Levant Restaurant in Karmi on Tuesday 30th October.

There were around 30 people present for a lovely lunch of Chilli or Quiche and Salad and Peggy was surrounded by her daughter Elizabeth, grand-daughter Fiona and great grand-daughter Megan and close friends and I must say she looked so well and happy.

Brian Thomas, the Chairman of RBL, presented Peggy with a card and a bottle of Glenfiddick, and said he was proud to say that Peggy is the oldest overseas member of the Royal British Legion and although it cannot be verified he would like to think she is the oldest RBL member in the world.  The birthday card was decorated with poppies and had the inscription “A special birthday greeting being sent your way, with many happy wishes for a truly perfect day – Happy 105th Birthday”   Brian mentioned that the oldest Chairman of an RBL Branch is in Chile and he is 101, so as Brian is stepping down as Chairman  this year, he thought Peggy might like the job!

This was then followed by a speech from from Les Evans, Vice Chair of RBL, who said that Peggy’s late husband was a Freemason and it was tradition with the local Bellapais Masonic Lodge to send a card and gift and Les presented Peggy with a card signed by the Brethren and a lovely bouquet of flowers.

In the entrance hall to the restaurant there was a beautiful cake made up in sections 1 0 5 with many cards from well-wishers and during the afternoon group photographs were taken of the cake and Peggy with her guests and everyone sampled the birthday cake after the meal.

Peggy said a few words after the meal, thanking everyone for coming and for their good wishes for her birthday which she was thoroughly enjoying.

This remarkable lady has made 3 tandem paragliding jumps, one to celebrate her 100th birthday which took her into the Guinness Book of Records, another to regain her title as the oldest person to do a jump earlier this year and another, just for the fun of it a few weeks ago, to celebrate her forthcoming 105th birthday.  She also had a trip around Kyrenia on the back of a Harley Davidson motorbike when she was around 100 years old.

Reflecting on the number of years Peggy has been around makes you think of all the events and changes which have happened during her lifetime, not only in the UK and North Cyprus but also worldwide.   Peggy was born in 1907 so she has lived through 2 World Wars, there have been 5 British Monarchs, 24 Olympic Games, the first spacecraft, the first man on the moon, just to mention a few momentous events and of course there are so many others with the birth of the aircraft in 1903 which gave rise to the first passenger aircraft, the first round the world flight etc. which have also happened in Peggy’s lifetime.

I am sure at the age of 105, Peggy must suffer from those aches and pains which come with aging, but she is always smiling and may she go on smiling for many more years to come.

One of the guests mentioned that this was the first 105th birthday he had ever been to, and for me too, so we all look forward to attending,  for the first time again,  a 106th birthday next year.

By Margaret Sheard

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