One of Sutherland Shire’s oldest residents, May Chester celebrated her 106th birthday at Thomas Holt Villages, Sutherland yesterday.
Born May Palmer in Sydenham, London and migrated to Australia with her parents in 1925.
Growing up, she did casual work but spent a lot of her youth looking after her mother who was in poor health.
May Palmer was about 15 when she met William Chester and the two married when she was 23.
"I went to the church and Sunday school at the Congregational Church Hurstville and that is where I met my husband," Mrs Chester said.
They married in 1936 and moved to Hurstville that year.
They had two children, Donald and Helen, six grandchildren, 14 great-grandchildren and one great-great grandchild.
Mr Chester died in 2007 after 71 years of marriage.
Her daughter-in-law Kay said that Mrs Chester still loves to read and likes a chat.
“She still reads her English magazines we buy her every week,” Kay said.
“And she likes a chat, usually about England.”
Mrs Chester said her mother-in-law puts her long life down to a strict no alcohol policy.
“I think she lived cups of tea and very plain food,” Kay said.
Mrs Chester celebrated her 106th birthday with her family and friends at Thomas Holt.