Yarmouth woman with Downs Syndrome celebrates 50 years at community hub
07:00 31 December 2015
When Janet Peake gave birth to her daughter she was told in no uncertain terms that her life would amount to very little.
However, undaunted by the prospect of raising a child with Downs Syndrome she resolved to do all she could to nurture Elizabeth and give her the best life she could.
Now aged 55, with wide circle of friends and a busy social life, a celebration was held to mark her popular daughter’s golden contribution to a community hub.
At five years old she attended John Grant School, then in Suffolk Road, Gorleston, and rather than move with it to Caister she stayed on at 15 when it became a community hub.
Now under the auspices of Independence Matters she has clocked up fifty continuous years of attendance at the site which is like a second home.
Staff and helpers dressed in clothing from across the five decades and arranged a display tracing the changing decades and details like the cost of living.
Over the years bubbly and active Elizabeth, the eldest of four children who lives with her mother in Caister, had held a variety of jobs at the adult training centre, including rolling bandages and making pet bedding.
In 1999 the adult training centre became Great Yarmouth Day Services and the emphasis was more on providing customers to join in the local community and any activities available.
A spokesman said: “Throughout all this time and up to the present day Elizabeth has fully participated in many activities and is also an advocate for her peers, equal lives (an advocacy group for people with learning disabilities) and many other partnership boards.
“She speaks up for herself and others and is an integral part of the fibre of our hub.
“Elizabeth Peake we salute you and long may you continue to part of our lives.”