Royal dancing partner and Welwyn bowls champion
PUBLISHED: 12:15 04 February 2016 | UPDATED: 12:38 04 February 2016
A grandmother who danced with a future king before founding Welwyn Bowls Club has celebrated her 100th birthday.
Betty Small, who danced with the future Edward VIII at Mar Lodge in Scotland, near where she was brought up, enjoyed a party at her current home in Stevenage this week.
Asked the secret of her long life, she said: “I really don’t know – maybe it’s just keeping busy,”
After working as a servant at Mar Lodge, a formal royal residence, she moved to Codicote in 1951, and later Welwyn, where she helped start the bowls club.
Her daughter Fiona, 57, said: “She spent many happy years bowling, locally and further afield. She was a competitive player and won many trophies including the Hertfordshire Ladies County Championship.”
Betty has lived in supported housing in Stevenage for 16 years, but is still involved with bowls as a non-playing club member.
She also has a son, Allan, and grandchildren Cara and Andrew.
Fiona added: “She was still out and about at age 97.
“She’s always been very independent, but these days she likes having people over for coffee, seeing friends and family and watching sport on the telly -especially horse racing, snooker and tennis.
“There are a lot of people who would get to her age and wish they could do what she can.”