A woman believed to be the oldest surviving female World War Two veteran in the UK has died at the age of 108.
Gladys Anne Logan “Anne” Robson (nee MacWatt) from Duns was born on September 14, 1911.
Anne has witnessed the suffragette movement, over 20 prime ministers, 4 monarchs, 2 world wars, the first space launch and the advent of rapidly advancing technology.
Anne trained as a physiotherapist in 1933 before becoming a teacher later that year.
It was while she was teaching that WW2 broke out. After hearing that a women’s section of the army was being formed, she decided that there was no better way to get involved.
She joined the Auxiliary Territorial Service in 1942. Initially she served as a PTI (Physical Training Instructor) and then went on to complete her service in the rank of Senior Commander (Major) as Assistant Inspector ATS Physical Training. Anne stayed in the Army until the end of WW2. She is said to have remembered VE-Day very fondly, and “had a naughty twinkle in her eye” when recalling the celebrations.
Anne remained in service for another two years after the war ended when she became a senior lecturer at the Avery Hill College of Education in London.
She then married primary school headmaster, Jack Robson, in 1953, and the happy couple moved to Newcastle where Anne took up the position of deputy head at the Longhenton Secondary Modern School. Jack passed away in 1972.
After Jack died, Anne moved back up to her homeland Scotland and lived in St Andrews.
Anne also managed to fit in serving as a Justice of the Peace in Blaydon and Penrith. She remained there for numerous years until she moved into residential care in Edinburgh. As the oldest resident of the care home, Anne used to take to the stage at Christmas and give a speech over dinner.
Many described Anne as reserved and a very “gentle woman.”
Despite this though she was also “fiercely independent,” perhaps shown in the fact that she was driving up until the age of 90!
Her “naughty sense of humour” would often have people laughing and she was regularly visited in her care home due to this love for laughter.