A passionate primary school teacher who grew up in Wimbledon and worked most of her life in Sutton has turned 100 years old.

Pauline Oates, who was born on November 26, 1917, celebrated her centenary year at her care home in Banstead on Sunday.

Her niece, Margaret Jones, 70, organised a birthday party at the Sunrise of Banstead nursing home.

She said beforehand: “Pauline sometimes asks ‘how old am I going to be’ and I reply saying she will be 100. She just can’t believe it.

“13 of her close friends are going to Sunrise on Sunday and we will be taking bits and pieces for her. My son is a chef in London and he is doing the cake.”

Pauline served as a primary school teacher at Gander Green Lane for over 30 years and even travelled to Canada as part of an exchange.

Her niece said Pauline has a great sense of humour and is well loved in Sutton and Wimbledon.

She added: “We asked her the other day what was one of her favourite things. She said it was going out at playtime with the children.

“In the end she was teaching the children of pupils she used to have. When she left Gander Green Lane they made an amazing scrapbook for her and told her how much they loved her teaching.”

Pauline never married and is visited regularly by her niece Margaret.

Margaret, more affectionately known as Maggie, also praised the staff of Sunrise in Banstead who have looked after her aunty for 11 years.