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Frank finally gets his civic award—after 101 years

PUBLISHED: 18:28 22 April 2009 | UPDATED: 14:18 05 October 2010

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Carmen Valino

IT WAS Frank Whipple’s great moment at the Town Hall last night (Tuesday) getting his civic award. He only had to wait 101 years to receive the highest honour London’s East End can give its citizens, one of 10 men and women receiving civic awards

Frank Whipple (pictured centre) surrounded by his family, left-to-right, great-granddaughter Jessica, daughter Peggy, grandson Andrew and son Harry

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IT WAS Frank Whipple’s great moment at the Town Hall last night (Tuesday) getting his civic award.

He only had to wait 101 years to receive the highest honour London’s East End can give its citizens.

Frank, at the grand age of 101, was one of 10 men and women receiving civic awards from Tower Hamlets council.

The still-active Millwall football fan was nominated by the East London Advertiser for his role in improving quality of life in the community, despite his age, caring for his disabled daughter Peggy who is herself 64—he is probably Britain’s oldest official carer.

Also nominated by the Advertiser was historian Tom Ridge, whose campaigning saved the East End’s Bancroft Archive Library last year after winning support from Downing Street.

STANDING OVATION

Frank got a standing ovation at the Town Hall after the Advertiser’s News Editor Mike Brooke gave the story of his achievements.

He and his late wife Lily were told when Peggy was born 64 years ago to put the baby in a home and get on with their lives, as she was not expected to live beyond her 30s.

But they ignored the advice and instead cared for Peggy, who is living a normal life today with Frank at their home in Limehouse—twice the age doctors predicted.

He received his award from the Deputy Lieutenant of Tower Hamlets with his family present, his daughter Peggy and 69-year-old son Harry, grandson Andrew, 42, and great-granddaughter Jessica, 10.

OUTSTANDING SERVICE

Civic award winners for “outstanding service to the community” also included NHS activist Dr Anna Livingstone who runs the Limehouse clinic, for learning the Bangladeshi mother tongue to be able to communicate with her many Bengali patients, and pharmacist I Bird who runs Arms chemist’s in Poplar High Street for personally delivering prescriptions to many elderly patients through all weathers.

Other award winners were Pearl Charles, Peter Vincent, Ricky Blackett, Atik Miah, Jackie Cloves and Margaret Tracey.


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