A FORMER land girl, newspaper editor and artist has celebrated her 100th birthday.

Kate Beckett marked her milestone day with friends and family at her Colne Housing care home, Quay Courtyard, in Manningtree.

Born in North London, Kate started her working life as a fever nurse in the South-Western Fever Hospital.

At the outbreak of the Second World War, she joined the Ministry of Information, eventually moving on to the Land Army, where she spent two years working on a farm near Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire.

In 1943, Kate left the Land Army for Moscow, where she assisted in establishing a new newspaper called British Ally, remaining in Russia until the end of the war.

In later years, having travelled extensively throughout Europe and Asia, Kate and her second husband Geoffrey, moved to Mistley, where she became a prolific local artist - many of her artworks are still displayed around the town.

Kate said: "I'm thrilled that I have received a telegram from the Queen and everyone has just been so kind."