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Salisbury care home resident celebrates 104th birthday

James and Family celebrate 104th Birthday

World War 2 Veteran and Prisoner of War, James Wren, a resident at Old Sarum Manor, recently celebrated his 104th birthday surrounded by loved ones and staff. Enjoying a day filled with joy and surprises.  

The staff transformed the beautiful Sky Bar at Old Sarum Manor, creating a festive atmosphere with balloons and birthday decorations. A delicious cake, chosen especially by James, took centre stage. 

Adding a heartwarming touch, the Royal Marines in Plymouth sent a personalised video message. The Royal Marines band sang Happy Birthday to James, a special gesture that acknowledged his service. 

James’s life story is one of remarkable resilience. Originally from East Grimstead, he served as a Royal Marine aboard HMS Repulse during World War II. When the ship was sunk by Japanese bombers in 1941, James miraculously became one of the few survivors. Captured as a prisoner of war, James endured harsh conditions for over three and a half years. 

Throughout the day, James’s family visited to celebrate. James and his wife of 74 years Maragret built a loving family. His son, Barry, travelled all the way from Australia, while his daughter, Denise, resides closer in Salisbury. James also has two grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. 

James expressed his sincere gratitude to the staff at Old Sarum Manor for making his birthday so special. He also extended his thanks to his loving family for their unwavering support throughout his life. 

James Wren’s 104th birthday was a testament to a life well-lived. His story of courage, resilience, and family love is truly inspiring. 

Emily Luckhurst Old Sarum Manor’s Head of Lifestyle shared: “We’re always thrilled to celebrate our residents’ birthdays and make them as special as possible. James’s life story is truly remarkable and inspiring, and we wanted his birthday celebration to reflect that. We’re so happy he enjoyed the day and everyone could get together to celebrate James.” 


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