What centenarian Bill has seen over a century

Bill Hatfield celebrating his 100th birthday with staff from Butterley House Residential Home
Bill Hatfield celebrating his 100th birthday with staff from Butterley House Residential Home

A man who has lived in Ripley for his entire life has recently celebrated a landmark birthday as he reached the grand age of 100.

William Hatfield, affectionately known as Bill by his family and friends marked a century at the start of the month surrounded by family and friends at Butterley House Residential Home.

Born in Waingroves on 
September, 9 1914, not long after the outbreak of World War One, Bill spent his youth 
growing up in the area before following in the footsteps of his father, grandfather and great-grandfather working in the Gas Industry.

All three family members before him had been foremen at Ripley Gas Works.

Bill started work in 1928 at the age of 14 as a meter collector for the Gas Company, and in 1941 he succeeded his father as foreman to continue what was a proud family legacy.

In 1958 he further climbed the career ladder becoming a gas holder inspector in 
Derby for what was then British Gas.

He reached the pinnacle of his career in 1978 when he was proudly awarded a British Empire Medal for his services to the gas industry for over 50 years.

Outside work Bill has always been a keen gardener keeping an allotment spick and span until he reached 93.

Bill was married to wife Mary Hatfield for 73 years 
until she sadly passed away in 2013 at the age of 98.

Bill has one son, Robert and daughter-in-law Gill, he is grandfather to Katy and 
Stuart a great-grandfather to Ben and Emily.

Bill has been a resident at Butterley House Residential Home in Ripley since 2010.