SOMERSET'S oldest resident has died a month after her 107th birthday.

Pat Aldridge passed away peacefully at Nynehead Court care home on Monday, December 27.

She was born in Solihull on November 26 1914, four months into the First World War, the fifth of eight siblings.

She was christened Dina because her father misspelt Diana when registering her birth. The family called her Pat, her middle name.

Her parents were Richard Boycott, a butcher, and Rose Overton.

Pat grew up in Solihull Lodge, a village on the eastern outskirts of Birmingham.

Although the nature of the business meant they always had enough to eat, Pat remembered children in the neighbourhood not having enough food or proper shoes. She also remembered writing on a sand tablet.

Pat left school at 13 to help with the business and the home. She had to care for her sister who had curvature of the spine and died young.

In her her late teens she took an apprenticeship with Marshall and Snelgrove, a large Birmingham department store, working in sales and purchasing.

She met her future husband Ken at the local tennis club when she was 17 and he was 18, and they married in 1937.

Somerset County Gazette:

YOUNGER DAYS: Pat in her 20s.

They moved to London, where Pat worked for Selfridges, then returned to the Birmingham area during the Second World War.

Their four eldest children, Richard, Andrew, Diana and Mary Jane, were born and raised in Alvechurch, while Sarah, the youngest, was born in 1960. For many years, Mary Jane (later Yates) taught science at Court Fields School, which her two children also attended.

In 1968 the Aldridges retired to open a post office and general store in Cornwall, claiming they had never worked so hard.

After their retirement, they moved to Wellington in 1981 to be closer to their family. Ken died in 1990 after more than 52 years of marriage.

Pat immersed herself in community life and took up various hobbies, in particular Honiton lace.

She contracted pneumonia four years ago, which eventually led to her death from bronchial pneumonia.

She lived independently with increasing external support until November 2019, when she moved to Nynehead Court, where she was very happy.

In April 2020, Pat contracted Covid and became the oldest patient ever discharged from Musgrove Park Hospital after being allowed home after five days treatment.

As well as five children, Pat leaves 13 grandchildren and 19 great grandchildren.

Her family are holding a private funeral.