104 and plenty to remember

Pictured is Cath Leicester celebrating her 104th Birthday.Cath surronded by 5 generations of family
Pictured is Cath Leicester celebrating her 104th Birthday.Cath surronded by 5 generations of family
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Happy memories for great great gran as she celebrates birthday with family.

If you want to know something about Sheffield over the last 100 years or so – why not ask the ultimate expert?

At 104, Cath Leicester is one of the city’s oldest residents.

And the great, great grandmother shared a few of her tales when she celebrated her birthday surrounded by family.

Not only does Cath remember the smallest details of her own childhood, but has a great memory for stories passed down by her own parents.

She was a pupil at Owler Lane School in Grimesthorpe and points out the huge differences there are between schooling now and then.

Cath said: “We didn’t get the holidays like they have today. We only got two days at a time – a Friday and a Monday – even at Christmas. The teachers were always very strict too.

“I didn’t get chance to do much schooling. I was sent away from May to October to my aunt who lived in the country.”

As with most young women at that time, Cath left school and got her first job at the age of 14.

She said: “I went to work in a butcher’s shop before I went into service. I liked it very much.

“We got a day off a fortnight and then the next fortnight we got a whole weekend. I earned £2 a month working at the butchers.”

As a young teenager when she again had to leave her Sheffield home.

Cath said: “I went into service at a home in Hope. I was there for two and a half years as a parlour maid. I had to do everything from serving to washing.”

She left the job when she married her husband, George. The young couple lived in Page Hall and both worked at the No 1 Bakery.

Over the years, Cath also worked at Brown Bayleys steelworks before taking on a role at Bassetts where she made liquorice rock.

Cath still lives in her Ecclesfield home and loves nothing more than a family get-together.

She has one daughter, Marian, three grandchildren, six great grandchildren and five great, great grandchildren – the eldest is 17 and the youngest just two.