Gladys Hooper
Gladys Hooper
Gladys Hooper shortly before her 112th birthday
Birth: 18 January 1903
London, England, UK
Death: 9 July 2016
Ryde, England, UK
Age: 113 years, 173 days
Country: UK Flag UK

Gladys Ada Elizabeth Hooper (née Nash; 18 January 1903 – 9 July 2016) was a validated British supercentenarian who was the oldest living person in the United Kingdom from the death of Ethel Lang on 15 January 2015 until her own death on 9 July 2016.[1]

Early life

Hooper was born on 18 January 1903 in Dulwich, South London.[2] In 1916, she witnessed the German airship Schütte-Lanz SL 11 being shot down by Leefe Robinson, who was later awarded the Victoria Cross for his actions.[3] Hooper also met Thomas Edison, co-inventor of the lightbulb, when he visited her school.[4] Hooper went to college with aviator Amy Johnson, the first woman to fly solo from England to Australia. They became friends, with Hooper saying "She was good fun and a very good friend". Hooper was also a concert pianist, and played with famous bandleaders such as Jack Payne, Debroy Somers and Maurice Winnick.[5]

In 1922, at the age of 19, Hooper married Leslie Hooper, who had been a pilot in the Royal Flying Corps during World War 1. The couple had one child, Derek, who later became a pilot.

Later life

Hooper was married to Leslie for 55 years until his death from Parkinson's disease in 1977. She moved to Sandown on the Isle of Wight in 1979, to be closer to her family.[6] She lived independently until the age of 101, when she moved to the town of Ryde, also on the Isle of Wight, to live with her son Derek.

Hooper celebrated her 110th birthday, becoming a supercentenarian, on 18 January 2013. On 7 February 2014, her age was validated by the Gerontology Research Group.

Hooper outlived all of her siblings after her the death of her youngest sibling Joyce in 2014, at the age of 92. On 15 January 2015, three days before her 112th birthday, she became the oldest validated living person in Britain after the death of Ethel Lang, who was 114 years old.

In October 2015, Hooper fell and shattered her right hip. She became the oldest person to have a hip operation later that month; at the age of 112, she broke the record of John Randall who had hip surgery at the age of 102 in November 2011.

Hooper died on 9 July 2016 at the age of 113 years, 173 days. [7] After her death, Bessie Camm became the oldest living person in the UK.



United Kingdom's Oldest Living Person Titleholders (VE)

Jane Raby • Frances Smith • William Walker • Ann Russell • Eliza Roff • Ellen Palmer • Rachel MacArthur • Rachel Swain • Mary Davey • Thomas Pope • John Christian Francklow • Rebecca Lees • Sarah Fitt • Elizabeth Sellwood • Matilda Coppins • Elizabeth Whitehead • Emma Rooke • Margaret Lunn • Sarah Humphrey • Caroline Beale • Fanny Hopkins • Elizabeth Etheridge • Sophia Wellstead • Rhoda Harris • Emma Weeks • Edith Grellier • Mary WorthingtonJane Stoneman • Ellen Dart • Elizabeth Kensley • Hannah Smith • John Mosley Turner • Ada Roe • Alice Stevenson • Elizabeth Watkins • Frederick Butterfield • Rose Heeley • Agnes Helyar • James Harrow • Sarah Morgan • Lilias Williams • Florence Pannell • Jeanetta Thomas • Alice Brewster • Anna Eliza Williams • Kate Begbie • Charlotte Hughes • Daisy Adams • Rebecca Hewison • Annie Scott • Rachel Wieselberg • Lucy Jane Askew • Annie Jennings • Eva Morris • Amy Hulmes • Nellie Bradley • Gladys Hawley • Lucy d'Abreu • Edith Ingamells • Emmeline Brice • Annie Knight • Ada Mason • Florrie Baldwin • Eunice Bowman • Annie Turnbull • Elsie Steele • Margaret Fish • Violet Wood • Grace A Jones • Ethel Lang • Gladys Hooper • Bessie CammOlive BoarGrace C Jones