A WOMAN believed to be the Isle of Wight’s oldest resident celebrated her 108th birthday on Saturday, at Inver House in Bembridge.

Born in Kent in 1911, Gwen Allen was one of three sisters, working as a children’s nanny until the start of Second World War.

Following the war, she took a job as a clerk at Saunders Roe in East Cowes.

Although never marrying or having children, Ms Allen remained close to her two Island-based nephews, one of whom spent her birthday with her.

They opened more than 60 cards from wellwishers together and enjoyed reading through all of them together.

Some of these were from the Postcards of Kindness initiative supported by Inver House, with cards coming in from all over the country.

Ms Allen is a popular member of the care home, with support from staff enabling her to indulge in a range of hobbies, including jigsaw puzzles, pampering sessions and a love of country and western music, most notably Johnny Cash.

She also enjoys a good one-to-one chat.

A spokesperson for Inver House said: “Gwen used to love needle work and flower arranging, previously attending a weekly flower group.

"The fact that she drove a Triumph car up until she was in her 90s gives you some insight into the special lady she is.

“Our chef made a beautiful cake which she shared with residents and staff, who celebrated the day with her.”