CARING Alice Taplin celebrated her 90th birthday on Thursday in the company of the grateful grandchildren she fostered.

Mrs Dawn Percival (45) of Meadowcroft, Radcliffe, and her sister Rae (40) were cared for by Alice after their mother died in the 1960s, while their baby brother was adopted by their aunt. Mrs Percival said Alice and her late husband, Clifford, gave them the happiest childhood they could imagine, giving the family added reason to help her celebrate the landmark birthday in style.

Mrs Percival said: "My mother died just before Christmas in the 60s, so my gran had to provide a special day for us, and then organise a funeral for my mother in the January. It must have been so hard for her, but she was amazing."

Alice, who lived in Leeds until three months ago, worked as a tailor until she was in her 80s and went dancing three times a week until last Christmas. She has two children, five grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren. Her birthday will be celebrated with family and friends at Moorfield Sheltered Housing Scheme in Wordsworth Avenue where she has lived since arriving in Radcliffe to be nearer to her family.