VIDEO: Two birthday cakes for 104-year-old Horsham lady with a soft spot for syrup

A 104-year-old has lead a long and happy life with the help of a generous dose of honey and syrup and the odd glass of Babycham.

Ethel Bull, of Hazelhurst Nursing Home, Kings Road, Horsham, celebrated her 104th birthday on Tuesday (February 11) and her family made her day with a generous supply of cakes.

Ethel Bull with son James, grandson Alan and granddaughter-in-law Joanna   Photo by Steve Cobb

Ethel Bull with son James, grandson Alan and granddaughter-in-law Joanna Photo by Steve Cobb

James Bull, known as Jim, 84, is one of Ethel’s four sons and he said Ethel’s secret to a long life had to be the copious amounts of syrup and honey she drizzled on all she drank and ate.

He said: “She had two jars of honey and a bottle of maple syrup every week. She had it in everything.

“She doesn’t stop eating! She didn’t drink much. Though she quite liked Babycham.”

The sweet treat must have worked as Ethel was strong and healthy enough to still be living on her own until last year.

James, from Crawley, and his son Alan spent the afternoon with Ethel and helped her make her way through two birthday cakes.

Alan, of Spencer’s Road, Horsham, said: “She’s still got a good appetite!”

Alan said he was always closer to his grandmother than his brothers Philip and Michael, because he was into sport and so was Ethel.

Ethel was the captain of her Darts team at her local pub in London.

Ethel lived in London, near Crystal Palace, for much of her life. She met her husband James at a fun fare at Crystal Palace,

She and James also had a flat in Hove which they would stay in at the weekends.

Alan said one of his fondest childhood memories was going to visit his grandparents at the flat.

“The field was just round the corner. We used to go play cricket and watch the horse racing.

“She took me to see the horse racing at Goodwood.”

When her husband passed away in 1972, she moved to Portslade for a short period, then to Crawley.

Ethel lost two of her sons, Ronnie and Robert, died when they were just eight-years-old and he other son Peter died when he was 63.

Ethel has five great grand children including Joanna Polly, from Horsham, and Mathew Bull, from Southwater, and one great granddaughter called Emma Polly, from Horsham.