Charlotte Hughes (supercentenarian)
|Born||Charlotte Marion Milburn
1 August 1877
|Died||17 March 1993
(aged 115 years, 228 days)
|Known for||Oldest British person ever|
|Spouse(s)||Noel Hughes (1940–1979)
Charlotte Marion Hughes, née Milburn (1 August 1877 – 17 March 1993) is the longest-lived person ever documented in the United Kingdom, or in England at 115 years 228 days, despite longevity myths such as that of Thomas Parr.
Hughes grew up in Middlesbrough in Yorkshire, where her father ran a music shop. She worked as a teacher in a religious school from the age of 13 and married Noel Hughes, a retired army captain, after she retired at age 63. She was married until her husband died in 1979 at the age of 88. Hughes was the fourth undisputed person in history to reach age 115, after Augusta Holtz, Jeanne Calment and Lucy Hannah.
She remained in robust health into extreme old age and achieved public recognition for her longevity, including tea with then Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, in 1985, whom she jokingly admonished against cuddling up to her, as Hughes was a Labour supporter. Thatcher replied by saying "Oh well, never mind, let's have a cup of tea". However, Hughes admitted to personally liking Thatcher, and described the Prime Minister as "A very nice woman". For her 110th birthday, she flew on Concorde to New York City, one of only two supercentenarian air passengers ever recorded. She stayed at The Waldorf-Astoria Hotel for four days on an all-expenses paid visit and met the mayor Ed Koch.
She became the oldest person in the United Kingdom when Scotland's Kate Begbie died in 1988, and broke the national longevity record, held until then by Anna Eliza Williams, in early 1992. Several British women including Eva Morris (who died at age 114 years 360 days) have reached 114 since, and Annie Jennings (1884–1999) reached age 115 years 8 days, but the record set by Hughes still stands. Hughes lived in her own home in Marske-by-the-Sea until 1991, when she moved to a nursing home in Redcar due to becoming too frail to look after herself. She also spent her final years in a wheelchair, though she remained mentally alert and sharp to the end of her life. She was the last surviving British person with an 1870s birthdate.
See also 
- Maier, Heiner (2010). Supercentenarians. Springer. p. 293. ISBN 3642115195. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
- "On this day, 1 August 1989: Britain's oldest person turns 112". BBC News. 1 August 1989. Retrieved 19 November 2007.
- Validated supercentenarians who lived and/or died in the UK The Gerontology Research Group
- "Oldest Briton dies aged 115". The Guardian. 18 March 1993. p. 5.
- "Mrs Charlotte Hughes". The Guardian. 5 August 1987. p. 3.
|Oldest person in the United Kingdom
27 December 1987 – 17 March 1993
Anna Eliza Williams
|Oldest person from the United Kingdom
26 February 1992 – present