A care home has been getting the party poppers out to mark the 99th birthday of one of its residents.

Southerndown Care Home, in Chipping Norton, has been celebrating Harold Wakefield's near-century milestone.

Born on February 10 1925 in Clanfield, Hampshire, his arrival brought joy and laughter to his family's home.



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After completing his primary education under the guidance of his first teacher, Miss Osborne, at Enstone Primary school, Mr Wakefield joined the Royal Air Force to serve his country at the young age of 18.

He carried out service work in the conflict-ridden territories, delivering dried milk packets for starving people, orphanages and nurseries.

Mr Wakefield's 21st birthday was marked with a celebration in Sylt, an island in Germany, beginning a lifelong connection with its residents, who later sent books about their island to him as a token of thanks for his service after he left the RAF.

He next joined joined the Forestry Department and eventually became its head.

Mr Wakefield served for 48 years and won the prestigious Long Service Award for his commitment.

His passion for conservation led him to plant over 2000 trees, creating a green legacy for future generations to appreciate.

The environment became something of a family affair, with his son Peter also following his path, serving for over 41 years himself.

Today, Mr Wakefield is a family man with a son, three grandchildren, and eight great-grandchildren.

As he turned 99, his loved ones gathered at his care home for his birthday.

The celebration saw Mr Wakefield planting a Magnolia tree as a symbol of growth, strength, and his passion for the environment.

Following the tree planting, the staff at the care home arranged a special birthday celebration by decorating the hall and cutting the cake, as well as music and snacks.

The care home's general manager, Shilpa Nair, said: "We’re delighted to be celebrating a truly remarkable man as he reaches this amazing milestone.

"Harold is such a popular resident who always has an interesting tale to tell, and we look forward to hearing many more stories from him."