Sheffield & South Yorkshire

Sheffield woman Winnie Blagden turns 100

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Media captionWinnie Blagden and her carer Darren Pinder show some of her birthday cards, including one from the Queen, as she celebrates turning 100

A woman who received 16,000 birthday cards from around the globe after an internet appeal went viral has turned 100.

BBC Radio Sheffield launched a Facebook campaign after learning Winnie Blagden had no surviving family.

It urged well-wishers to send cards to the centenarian, who reached the milestone age on Sunday.

Mrs Blagden told the BBC she would be having a shandy to celebrate her birthday.

A surprise party organised by the radio station earlier in the week saw Mrs Blagden lavished with gifts and cards.

She told the crowd at the city's town hall she was "overwhelmed" by the response to the appeal.

Image caption Winnie was treated to cake and champagne at the surprise party
Image copyright Lauren Potts
Image caption Cards and gifts came from all over the world

"It's been lovely. I don't know why everyone's making such a fuss, it's [normally] for people who have done marvellous things," she said.

Mrs Blagden, from Sheffield, never had children, and has no relatives following the death of her husband George 30 years ago.

She is looked after by Serenta Homecare.

Image caption The party was organised by BBC Radio Sheffield

Sue Pinder, who owns the company, said: "Winnie just can't understand everyone's kindness, in her eyes she's a normal lady who's done nothing.

"But she brings so much joy and pleasure to people, especially those carers, she can't see what she does to everybody."

Mrs Blagden received cards from all over the world, including Taiwan, Singapore and the US.

She will now add a birthday message from The Queen to her collection and a signed card from Dowtown Abbey actor Brendan Coyle, a show which Mrs Blagden is a fan of.

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