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  1. ITV Report

Dame Vera Lynn to be honoured as she celebrates her 100th birthday

Dame Vera Lynn's image was projected on the white cliffs of Dover on Monday as part of her 100th birthday celebrations.

The 350ft image was projected onto the cliffs and Spitfires were due to fly overhead - although they were cancelled due to bad weather - to honour her famous 1942 song 'White Cliffs of Dover'.

A 350ft image of Dame Vera Lynn has been projected on the white cliffs of Dover to mark her 100th birthday Credit: Decca Records/PA Wire

The singer, affectionately known as The Forces' Sweetheart, also celebrated the release of her new album, Vera Lynn 100, on the day she becomes a centenarian.

The renowned wartime singer turns 100 on Monday. Credit: PA
Dame Vera, pictured in 1991. Credit: PA

Dame Vera became the oldest living artist to land a UK number one album in 2009, and it is believed she will become the first person to release a new album as a centenarian.

The album - which also marks the wartime singer's 93 years in the music industry - will also feature a previously unreleased version of Sailing in a surprise move, as it was not widely known she had recorded the track.

Dame Vera performed for British troops across the world during the Second World War, and often sung signature hits including 'We'll Meet Again' and 'A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square'.

Dame Vera, pictured in 2009. Credit: PA
Dame Vera Lynn said she was 'truly thrilled' by the 'wonderful gesture' of having her face projected on the cliffs Credit: Decca Records/PA Wire

She said: "It is an unprecedented honour to have my birthday marked in such a beautiful way and I am truly thrilled by this wonderful gesture.

"As we look to the white cliffs on Monday, I will be thinking of all our brave boys - the cliffs were the last thing they saw before heading off to war and, for those fortunate enough to return, the first thing they saw upon returning home.

"I feel so blessed to have reached this milestone and I can't think of a more meaningful way to mark the occasion."

  • Stars pay tribute

The other day I was in the car and I suddenly found myself singing The White Cliffs Of Dover, and I began to cry.

My wife said 'What's wrong with you?' and I couldn't begin to explain, because there's too much history.

Dame Vera has been in my life since I was a child, I was born in 1940 and her music, her singing and what she meant to the British during the darkest, darkest days of the Second World War was so important.

– Sir Patrick Stewart

Dame Vera, we've met a lot of times over microphones.

I'm so thrilled that you've hit that 100 mark, I didn't doubt it for a minute.

– Gloria Hunniford

Dame Vera you are a complete star and congratulations. It's a wonderful, wonderful achievement.

– Lesley Joseph

You are, without doubt, a living legend. Congratulations.

– Eamonn Holmes