A centenarian celebrated her birthday playing a card game she has been playing for the past 69 years.

Mollie Smith, from Bourne End, turned 100 this week playing bridge at Lane End Bridge Club surrounded by friends and fellow players.

Mrs Smith was first introduced to the game when her husband started learning it after his work with the scouts.

She said he was coming home in the early hours of the morning and when she asked him what he was doing, he told her he was learning to play bridge prompting her to declare: “Well if you can play bridge so can I.”

Mrs Smith was born Edith Lee in Wolverhampton and got married just before she turned 31. She said her name Mollie came about after her father saw her after she was born and said: “This is Mollie.”

She and her husband spent a number of years on Sark after falling in love with the island on a previous holiday, taking on the management of a guest house and serving guests three meals a day for a decade.

She said: “Sark is such a wonderful place. It still is even though it has changed.”

Speaking about her milestone birthday, Mrs Smith said: “I just can’t believe it. I have got so many cards – around 60 or more – including one from the Queen, and a telegram from Work and Pensions.

“I’ve never had a telegram before.”

Mrs Smith has been celebrating with her loved ones at different parties thrown in her honour, including one with family, surrounded by her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren, and one with her friends at the bridge club.

She added: “At one of the parties I had three cakes – I didn’t realise at the time that the cakes were actually a number 100.

“It was amazing.”

Mrs Smith moved to Bourne End after her husband’s death and has been there for almost two decades.