Great-grandmother who survived the Blitz celebrates her 100th birthday

Vera McDonagh, of Manor Top, who is celebrating her 100th birthday, is pictured with great grandchildren James and Jessica Hopkins, aged three and one.

Vera McDonagh, of Manor Top, who is celebrating her 100th birthday, is pictured with great grandchildren James and Jessica Hopkins, aged three and one.

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A great-grandmother who lived through the Sheffield Blitz has celebrated her 100th birthday with a family party.

Vera McDonagh was living in a house with her husband on Tennyson Road, Walkley, when it was destroyed during the Blitz in December 1940.

A small party was held at the Applegarth Close sheltered accommodation, in Manor Top – where still lives independently with support from carers.

Vera was born in Pitsmoor, Sheffield, on December 20, 1914 to Harriet Smith, a seamstress, and Robert Smith, a building contractor. She was one of six children, alongside Gladys, Eddie, Phyllis, Jack and Kathleen.

Vera started out as a tailoress on Norfolk Row, then went onto become a machinist at Stalker Drill Works until she married Martin McDonagh, in 1936.

The couple had two children, Vince and Dan. They remained together until his death in 1965.

Vera lived in Parkwood Springs, Walkley, Foxhill, Stannington, Barnaby Court and Deepcar, before moving to Manor Top in 1977.

Vince said: “Until fairly recently, her hobbies were needlework and reading. However, with failing eyesight, plus arthritis, that has now become impossible.

“She still likes to sit in front of the TV though.”

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